FLSA Claims and High-Level Employees
The Fair Labor Standard Act (FLSA) primarily sees claims regarding unpaid wages, overtime, and improper exemption status of an employee, and managers, directors, or officers may be held personally accountable by an employee making these claims.
Discharging an individual from a business is no pleasant task, but it may particularly spell trouble if the proper steps in discharging the employee aren’t taken, or if the discharge of the employee can be deemed as retaliatory in nature–as in, occurring after said employee blew the whistle on wrongful acts by the company or employer, or if said employee made complaints about their wages.
FLSA suits can occur even if there has been no foul play by a company or employer and even when management has kept proper employee records and timekeeping. Many claims under the FLSA arise as a result of improper timekeeping and employee record keeping as required by the FLSA itself, as well as improper salary payment and lack of proper overtime as required by law.
Misconceptions about FLSA Claims
It’s believed by many companies that when an employer and employee come to an agreement on compensation such as salary–regardless of the time worked by the employee–it’s enough to provide them with a safety net in the event of an employee’s suit, but this is not the case.
Even if we were to assume that the employee had agreed to their salary and not made any complaints about overtime if they worked more than forty hours in a workweek, that same agreement, between employer and employee, is not an adequate defense against an FLSA claim of improper wage compensation.
It is the responsibility of the employer to prove that the employee is, in fact, an exempt employee. Otherwise, no matter how well-intentioned the employer may be, they will be liable to the complaining employee for not only damages but attorney fees, which are more often than not quite a high price in FLSA cases.
Timekeeping and Remote Workers
With remote workers being more prevalent in the current climate than ever before, it’s imperative for employers to know what kind of trap the required timekeeping in relation to them can be, including lunch breaks and improper deductions for paid time off.
A company’s policies must be clear for the timekeeping, time off, and compensation of remote workers, and have sufficiently strict record-keeping procedures for these workers to ensure compliance with the policies themselves.
Exempt Employee Status
It is vital that both management and employers be incredibly careful when categorizing or considering categorizing an employee as exempt, as many cases will find that the employee is not actually considered exempt status and must be paid proper overtime for any actual work that exceeds the 40-hour workweek standard.
It is because of this possibility that it is highly recommended for employers to take the safer route by cautiously ensuring that an employee is paid by the hour, including any overtime pay if such is applicable. If you’re looking for further great information, look no longer- We can provide other great legal tips at Thompson Law.