Should I Hire a Lawyer for a Wage and Hour Violation?

If you believe your employer is not paying you fairly, whether by not paying you minimum wage, not paying you for all the hours you worked, or not paying you overtime, you may have a claim for a wage and hour violation under the Federal Labor Standards Act (FLSA) or state wage and hour laws.

At Brady & Associates, our employment lawyers can determine whether you were the victim of a wage and hour violation, and assist you in deciding on the best course of action to move forward.

What Is a Wage and Hour Violation?

A wage and hour violation occurs when your employer does not pay you for all the work you performed. There are a number of different ways your employer can violate your rights under the FLSA or state wage and hour laws. For example, you may have a clam for unpaid wages if your employer has failed to pay you:

  • Minimum wage
  • For break time or meal time as required by law
  • For all hours worked, including work done from home
  • For “off-the-clock” work
  • For “side-work” performed by tipped restaurant employees
  • For time needed to put on or take off safety gear or other work-related gear (doffing and donning)
  • Overtime pay for hours worked more than the 40 hour per week maximum (8 hours per day in some states)
  • For travel time during the workday that is related to your work

Do I Need a Lawyer for a Wage and Hour Claim?

Claims for wage and hour violations are not clear cut, and are often very complicated. For example, if you receive tips as a part of your income, your employer is only required to pay you the tipped minimum wage, which is less than federal minimum wage for non-tipped employees. But if your tips do not bring your hourly wage above the non-tipped minimum wage, you may have a claim for a wage and hour violation.

A skilled employment lawyer can help you analyze whether your employer has violated the FLSA or stateemployment laws, and can give you options on how to proceed. You may wish to file a claim with the state or federal labor department, have your lawyer send a letter demanding payment of your unpaid wages, file a lawsuit, or some combination of the three.

The employment lawyers at Brady & Associates will also advise you about any potential disadvantages to a given course of action. For example, if you file a claim with the state or federal labor department, you might forfeit the option of pursuing a lawsuit, or limit the amount of money you can recover.

How Should I Prepare for my First Meeting with my Wage and Hour Lawyer?

At your first meeting with your attorney, be ready to discuss details of your case. Your lawyer will want to know:

  • Who is your employer
  • What is your rate of pay
  • How many hours did you work
  • What hours do you believe you were not paid or underpaid for
  • A summary of key events, with dates (as many and as close as you know)
  • Names of the people involved in setting your pay rate and scheduled hours
  • Names of coworkers who might have information about your particular issue, for example, coworkers who did not receive overtime pay

Also bring with you any relevant documents, like pay-stubs, your records of hours worked, details about your employer’s pay practices, and the employee handbook, if you have one.

After learning about your situation, our attorneys will discuss with you your options on how to proceed with your claims.

Think You Have a Claim for a Wage and Hour Violation?

If you believe your FLSA or state minimum wage rights were violated, or if you have questions about your rights under the FLSA or state wage and hour laws, contact the experienced employment law attorneys at Brady & Associates today.

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