Frequently Asked Unpaid Wages and Overtime Questions

Have questions about your legal matter and are afraid to ask? If so, head on over to our FAQ section in which we tackle a variety of important topics that matter to you. Find answers to questions regarding car accidents, medical malpractice, unpaid overtime, and a variety of other legal subjects that may be affecting you. 
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  • I work in IT, and my employer claims I am not entitled to overtime compensation. Should I pursue legal action?

    In order to protect the rights of employees, the Fair Labor Standards Act requires that many employees receive overtime Fingers Resting on a Keyboardcompensation when they work more than 40 hours in a week. The employees who are not entitled to overtime compensation are those who fall under one of the exemptions outlined in the Act. One such exemption is known as the Computer Professional Exemption. This exemption applies to workers whose job is primarily spent working independently or as a supervisor of other employers, and who spend their time creatively designing programs, writing code, or addressing new computer problems.

    3 Questions to Consider With Regard to the Computer Professional Exemption as it Applies to Overtime Compensation

    Determining whether your job falls under the Computer Professional Exemption is not always obvious. Many factors apply in order to decide whether your job is exempt or not. The following questions, however, are a good starting point for making this determination:

    1. Was your pay at least $455 per week?
    2. What is your job title? Is the title computer systems analyst, computer programmer, software engineer, or something similar?
    3. What are your main duties? Do these duties relate to the application of systems analysis techniques and procedures, design, documentation, creation, testing, analysis, or alteration of computer systems and programs, or the design, documentation, creation, testing, analysis or modification to computer programs relating to operating systems?

    Depending on the answer to the above questions, you may be entitled to overtime compensation even though you work in the IT field. For example, if you conduct manual work on machines, you are not exempt from receiving overtime. Similarly, if your job requires you to use computers or computer software programs, but it is not directly related to the operation or programming or analysis of computer systems, you are still likely required to receive overtime compensation when you work more than 40 hours per week. In these cases, you may need to take legal action in order to obtain the compensation that you deserve. We encourage you to check out our free guide, The 10 Biggest Mistakes That Can Hurt Your Wage & Overtime Claim to learn more.

     

  • I am considering pursuing a claim against my employer for unpaid overtime, how does the process work?

    Blue Overtime Folder Sitting Next to a CalculatorWhen your employer has not paid you the overtime compensation that you deserve, you may need to pursue legal action to recover the funds that are rightfully yours. Unless you have been through the litigation process in the past, this is likely all new territory. It is important to have a general understanding of what to expect before proceeding.

    8 Aspects of the Overtime Legal Claim Process

    What should you anticipate happening as you begin the process of trying to recover the unpaid overtime compensation that you deserve? The following is a general guideline:

    1. The first step in the process is to find an attorney. It is important to choose someone who is experienced handling wage and overtime violation cases. He or she can help you decide the best way to proceed. In addition, your attorney will help ensure that you meet all of the deadlines associated with pursuing a claim.

    2. The lawsuit process officially begins when you file a complaint or petition. This makes you the plaintiff in the action, and your employer is the defendant. The defendant will then file an answer wherein they either agree or deny with the legal items raised in your petition or complaint.

    3. One of the next steps in the process is for the parties to meet and outline a schedule of deadlines within the litigation of the case. The court will also issue the deadlines that must be followed. Every case is different; however, a general idea is that cases are set for trial one year after the complaint or petition is filed.

    4. During the discovery process, the parties have the opportunity to ask questions and seek out information. This may be done through oral depositions, document production requests, or written questions known as interrogatories. Discovery takes place after the defendant has filed the answer.

    5. After the discovery process is over, the defendant has an opportunity to file a motion for summary judgment. If the motion is allowed, the case will not proceed to a jury trial. If the judge denies the motion, the case then moves on to the jury trial proceedings.

    6. After the motion for summary judgment is denied, the trial begins. A trial can last days or weeks. The first day of the trial involves choosing the jury members. Once the trial begins, the judge must decide which information is allowed to be used as evidence during the proceedings.

    7. If you win your case, the defendant may file an appeal. To do so, the defendant must write legal briefs to appellate judges. The court can reverse the jury finding or it can reduce the damages that were awarded to the plaintiff.

    8. In some cases, the parties may opt to go to mediation instead of going to trial. Mediation is a process that may allow for a settlement to be reached before litigation occurs. The mediator must listen to both sides, and then meets with each side individually. Each side has an opportunity to offer a settlement or to make a counteroffer. Ideally, an agreement is then reached.

    When you are ready to move forward with your overtime claim, we are here to help. We encourage you to check out our many case results to learn more.