ATTN anyone with knowledge of US LABOR LAWS, I think my work is screwing me.

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by sief, Aug 7, 2008.

  1. sief macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2007
    #1
    I work at a health club, and I think they are screwing me out of time and a half when I work overtime. They have a very strange way of doing their pay and I am just unsure if there is a loophole in the labor laws that they are exploiting that I'm not aware of. I'll try to explain their methods the best I can.

    I will use last month for the example.

    We get paid on a bimonthly period. The pay period runs from the 1st of the month to the 15th of the month, then from the 16th to the 30th (or 31st). Then, we receive our checks on the 5th of every month and the 20th of every month. I work Monday through Friday, every day of the week. Last month, I worked a total of 12 days in the second pay period (July 16th - July 31st). They claim that since there are 12 days in this period, and assuming I work 8 hours a day, they claim that anything over 96 hours in this period is overtime. (Number of days worked in a pay period times 8 hours a day, 12 days at 8 hours a day = 96 total hours)

    So, I worked 102 total hours in this pay period, and only got paid for 6 hours of overtime!!!!


    Is this even legal? I have done some researching on labor laws, federal and state, and both say the same thing. Anything, ANYTHING, over 40 hours per week is mandatory time and a half.

    Is there some loophole they are exploiting?
     
  2. jplan2008 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    #2
    Yes. The "loophole" is that there are 52 weeks in a year, not 48, and some months have more weekdays than others. If you work Mon-Fri, they're right -- there were 12 workdays from July 16-31, so your normal hours would be 96. The good news is that your pay was higher -- in February you will work less hours, but get paid less ...

    Normally overtime is based on over 8 hours a day or over 40 hours a week. Doesn't have to do with number of hours per pay period.

    (there are also many real loopholes to labor laws that are generally different from state to state, BTW)
     
  3. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #3
    They should be posting the fair labor act fact sheets (both federal and state) somewhere on the wall at your place of work.

    Likely they are not.

    The fed one is minimum wage and overtime

    http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/flsa/ "Covered nonexempt employees must receive overtime pay for hours worked over 40 per workweek (any fixed and regularly recurring period of 168 hours — seven consecutive 24-hour periods) at a rate not less than one and one-half times the regular rate of pay."

    Then there is the one from your state, which may alter minimum wage but governs work hours and the breaks/meal periods you get.
     
  4. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #4
    Basically, your work week resets every 7 days, and overtime is based on the number of hours in a work week.

    They (and you) don't 'get' to average it over a 15 day period or any other different calculation. If you work 48 hours one week and 30 hours the next, you are still entitled to 8 hours overtime.
     
  5. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #5
  6. Kamera RAWr macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    Location:
    I'm where I need to be
    #6
    The company I work for uses this exact same plan. However, if you only work 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, doesn't matter how long the pay period is, you'll never get paid overtime. Has to be over 40 hours in a single week. Also, depending on what day of the week the pay period ends on, some over time may not be on the next check, but on the following check.
     
  7. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #7
    Different states have different laws regarding over time and you'd probably have an easier time getting correct info if you just called up your state labor board / department of labor. In CA, for example, anything over 8hrs a day or 40hrs a week is over-time (assuming your position qualifies for over-time). But in Indiana OT is only anything over 40hrs a week. So, you could work 16hrs in a day but as long as you stayed under 40hrs in a week you wouldn't get any OT.


    Lethal
     
  8. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #8
    This is why I am not a fan of calander day pay period for hourly employees. It leads to confusion as there are 52 weeks a year which leads to 26 two week pay periods. Compared to the montly one only 48 pay periods. So you have different number of days for each one. Salary on the other hand it works just fine but that is because it is a set amount that never changes.

    As for your missing over time. look at your next check. 40 hours limit for not over time for most company's is set Monday though Sunday. Your pay period glitch the 2nd part of that. so the over time for the 2nd week could be on your next check.
     
  9. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #9
    But w/salary you don't get paid OT and will mostly get screwed out of money because of it.

    That's how it is where I work now. Our checks really reflect the hours were are assumed to work in a given pay period (8hrs per day, 40hrs per week) not the hours we actually worked so any OT, missed days of work, or paid time off won't show up on the paycheck covering the pay period those events happened. They'll show up in the paycheck covering the pay period after those events which is just confusing as hell.

    When I was freelance I filled out a weekly time sheet and, yeah, I had to wait a week for it to get processed and have my check sent to me, but at least the amount of the check accurately reflected my hours worked for that week.


    Lethal
     
  10. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #10

    True I may not get over time pay salary but I still make more money over all compared to most hourly. That and I do not have to punch a time card, If I want to leave early one week no big deal.

    Mind you I work between 45-50 hours a week average with no over time pay. But Like I said I make more than most hourly people with OT.
     
  11. benmrii macrumors 65816

    benmrii

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    NC
    #11
    I've worked HR for a company that had the same (it seems) structure. To the OP: it's more simple than you're making it.

    The dates you are paid on, and the days that you are being paid for, don't have anything to do with overtime. What matters is the amount of hours you work every individual seven day period that has been determined by your employer to be the work week.

    The best example I can give for you to understand it is that overtime can be accrued through a week that is broken up by a pay period. For example, if last month you worked 10 hours on July 14 and 15 and then your normal 8 hours on July 16, 17 and 18 you would be paid for that week over two paychecks. The first paycheck (on the 20th) would include your salary for July 14 and 15, 20 hours of normal pay. The second check (on August 5) would include 20 hours of normal pay and 4 hours of overtime. You worked, in that week, 44 hours. It doesn't matter that the week is split into two for the sake of paychecks.

    In the same way, working a certain amount of days or hours within a pay period does not, on its own, warrant overtime. Since you worked 102 hours over what were 12 normal workdays, which without overtime would be 96 hours, then 6 hours overtime is accurate.

    In short: no, there's nothing shady going on and no loopholes are being exploited.
     
  12. aloofman macrumors 68020

    aloofman

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2002
    Location:
    Socal
    #12
    No, your employer is not screwing you out of overtime. Yes, you are poor at mathematics.

    But seriously, their reasoning is correct. You've only worked six hours of overtime during the pay period, so you should only get paid for six hours. Nice try though.
     
  13. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #13
    You earning more than most hourly workers has nothing to do w/salary vs hourly it just has to do w/the fact that you are in a higher paying job. If you held your same position at the same pay scale but were hourly then you'd make more money than you do now. There is a common perception that salaries are for high paying, professional jobs and hourly is for low paying, menial jobs but there are many professional fields where hourly, daily or weekly rates are common such as law, medicine, and most positions in the entertainment industry. There is a lot of money in Los Angeles and I guarantee most of it is earned by non-salaried professionals.

    I've worked hourly, or weekly, for about 5 years now and I've never punched a time clock. I fill out a time sheet each week and there's no one standing over my back making sure I note that I took 65 minutes for lunch on Thursday instead of 60. I'm in a professional field where we are expect to work our 8hrs (or 10 or 12 depending on the job) and we do. If I need to cut out early sometime that's fine 'cause I'll just pick it up on another day if I need to. Do you leave work early enough to balance out w/all the overtime you work? Working 45-50hrs a week works out to around 15-30 days annually you are working for free. That's just not right, IMO. Does your company at least have flex-time so the OT you work goes towards extra paid time off?

    Since OT costs my company money they don't let people work OT unnecessarily. I've actually had a boss come in and say, "Whatever you are working on can wait until morning. C'mon, it's time to go home." It's nice not to feel like you are being exploited by a boss who hits you w/"Oh, do you mind staying late..." all the time 'cause working you 10-12hrs a day doesn't cost them a nickel more than working you 8.

    Yes, I've had some bad experiences working on salary and yes it's made me a bit cynical.:D


    Lethal
     
  14. 63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Location:
    norcal
    #14
    Definitely look up the state and federal laws. Labor and employment law are far more intricate than what is on this thread. I got my bachelor's on the subject and now I am in law school.

    There are NO easy answers for this and the typical, and real legal answer is, "it depends".

    I used to be on the HR side of things and yes, they use bad math a lot of the time and come up with fake loopholes which don't even exist. Get the advice of an attorney on that subject in your state. Also realize that there are many ways even Supreme Court justices interpret any given law.

    People may be well meaning on this thread, all being fellow Mac users, but get a professional legal opinion. I hope this helps.
     
  15. Gray-Wolf macrumors 68030

    Gray-Wolf

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2008
    Location:
    Pandora, Home Tree
    #15
    2 things, it depends on the state, and are you salary? well 3 things, the job can be set that way to.

    Revised opinion. It may be legal, if they base it on pay period. My case, its per week, over 40, OT. I get payed every 2 weeks though.
     
  16. 63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Location:
    norcal
    #16
    The first is HUGE and no attorney in the world could know the specific laws of each state. There is just too much information. I spent a full year and a half before law school studying case law on my own.

    A first year law course in many law schools, Constitutional Law, shows that there are state laws and there are federal laws. It would be a fallacy to state that in every case, federal law trumps state law.

    There is a balance, which changes all the time.
     

Share This Page