My supervisor asks the sales team to stay late on projects in return for buying us dinner on the company credit card—but shouldn’t we be making overtime pay for these extra hours?

Although many employees may think buying dinner for the team is a nice gesture from an employer, these kinds of gestures are not a substitute for paying legal wages. Sales representatives are often pressed to stay late or put in extra hours on projects, and it is only fair that they should be paid in accordance with the law for their hard work. Unfortunately, employers do not always follow the rules, trying instead to wheel and deal their way out of paying overtime. 

You Can’t Give Up Your Right to Legal Overtime Pay—Even If You Want To

Many sales representatives are eligible for overtime under federal labor laws, and they cannot simply agree to work these hours without pay in exchange for dinner on the company card or some other alternate form of compensation. Instead of making deals, your supervisor should be keeping track of the hours you work and counting any time you put in over 40 hours each week toward overtime—even if you are paid a salary. If your employer wants to spring for takeout on a long night, it is a nice incentive. However, it does not legally make up for the pay you are missing out on.

Every Situation Is Different, but Help Is Available

If you are eligible for overtime and you work more than 40 hours in a week, then you should receive time-and-a-half pay for your overtime hours. However, it is not always that simple. Some sales representatives are eligible for overtime and some are not. The only way to tell for sure is to look over your job duties in addition to your hours, pay rate, employee classification, and more. If you have questions about your overtime pay as a sales representative, speak with our team today for clear answers and a free review of your overtime situation.

Galvin B. Kennedy
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Galvin Kennedy is a founding partner of Kennedy Hodges. He focuses his practice to overtime and wage claims.