When an employer incorrectly decides that an employee should not receive overtime pay, the employer commits an illegal wage and hour violation. It happens often in the retail industry.
Employee Misclassification in the Retail Industry
Incorrectly deciding that an employee should not receive overtime pay is considered “employee misclassification.” Some employers deliberately misclassify workers. Other employers simply do not understand how to correctly classify workers. Retail employers are no exception. These employers frequently misclassify assistant store managers. These assistant store managers are then unfairly denied overtime pay.
Test for Overtime Pay
To be exempt from overtime pay laws, a worker must meet certain factors. One factor concerns the employee’s job duties.
In general, if an assistant manager has the authority to make decisions about other employees, the assistant manager should be classified as an exempt employee. An assistant manager who is correctly classified as an exempt employee is not entitled to overtime pay.
But, many assistant managers do not have such powers. Instead, they perform non-managerial job duties. These duties include:
- Operating cash registers
- Stocking shelves
- Cleaning the store’s bathrooms
- Answering telephone calls
- Taking out the garbage
- Organizing product displays
- Loading customers’ cars
An assistant manager who performs these non-managerial job duties likely is entitled to overtime wages. In some cases, an assistant manager may be owed substantial back pay. The actual amount owed will depend on how many hours per week the assistant manager worked and how many weeks the employer violated the law.
Wage and hour violations happen across the nation in almost every industry. Some people may think of wage and hour violations as being limited to people who work as laborers, in factories, or in other “blue collar” jobs. But, wage and hour violations also frequently impact people who wear suits and work in a skyscraper. Wage and hour violation victims include auditors, accountants, bookkeepers, and clerks.
One wage and hour violation that frequently impacts white collar workers is an employer’s willful ignorance of the amount of time its employees actually are working.
There Is No Such Thing as Voluntary, Off-the-Clock Work.
An employee who is covered by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act cannot “opt” to work for free. That means a bookkeeper or clerk cannot:
- Volunteer to keep working after the employee has clocked out for the day;
- Offer to start working before the employee officially clocks in; or
- Work through a lunch break without compensation.
Some Supervisors Turn a Blind Eye to the Work Habits of Their Employees.
Some supervisors ignore the actual hours their employees work. This often happens if the company has a policy against overtime work. Rather than addressing the issue by asking the employee not to exceed 40 hours of work each work week, the supervisor allows the employee to report to work early, to work through lunch breaks, and to stay after the employee has clocked out. The supervisor essentially turns a blind eye to the extra work the employee performs. This means the employee may end up working hours of unpaid time.
Does Your Employer Ignore Your Overtime Work?
If so, you may be owed back wages. Call our South Carolina wage and hour attorneys toll-free at 1-888-449-2068. We may be able to help you collect unpaid wages from your employer.
Contact a South Carolina Overtime Law Attorney
Are you a retail assistant manager? Do you think you should have received overtime pay? If so, contact our South Carolina overtime pay attorneys. At Kennedy Hodges LLP, we help workers get the money they deserve. Contact our overtime pay lawyers today at 888-449-2068 or by filling out our online form.