As a worker in the United States you are protected by several important federal laws, including the Fair Labor Standard Act, or FLSA. The FLSA covers two important aspects of employment — minimum wage requirements and overtime wages.
Unless you are an exempt employee you are entitled to overtime pay for all time worked beyond 40 hours in a workweek.
Like many employees, however, you may rightly be concerned about retaliation and how your employer will react if you file a complaint based on the fact that you are not being paid overtime wages.
Specifically, you may want to know the answer to the question “Can I be fired for pursuing a claim for overtime?”
The FLSA is relatively straightforward with regard to overtime wages. All non-exempt employees must be paid overtime wages at the rate of one and one half times their regular wage for all time worked beyond 40 hours in a workweek.
Despite all this, some employers continue to not pay overtime to their employees.
LISTEN AS I SHARE EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FILING AN OVERTIME CLAIM
Sometimes an employer fails to pay overtime wages on the basis that the employer has (mistakenly or fraudulently) classified an employee as exempt.
Other employers don’t even offer an excuse for not paying overtime wages to employees who are clearly entitled to overtime pay.
Regardless of the rationale of your employer, if you believe you are entitled to overtime pay and are not receiving it you may file a claim against the employer.
If your employer chooses to retaliate against you for doing so your employer will be violating federal law.
Though the law cannot prevent your employer from firing you, demoting you, or otherwise making your life miserable at your job after you file an overtime claim, the law does make retaliation for doing so a violation of the law.
In fact, the law protects you from retaliation whether you have filed a formal complaint or only made and informal complaint.
Therefore, if your employer does fire you, or otherwise retaliate, after you pursue your rights to overtime pay under the FLSA, the employer’s retaliatory actions can be added to the complaint you just filed and may ultimately entitle you to additional compensation from your employer.
If you believe you made a good-faith complaint against your employer for non-payment of overtime wages and your employer then fired you, or retaliated against you in another manner, you should consult with an experienced Florida employment law attorney right away to discuss your legal options.
The law does protect you from an employer who violates the FLSA, but the law also limits the time frame within which you must pursue your rights. If you are facing employer retaliation – contact our experienced Florida employment law attorneys at Celler Legal, P.A. by calling 954-716-8601 or filling out the form on the right to schedule your appointment now.