Am I Entitled to Overtime Pay?

By Thomas McKinney

You may be entitled to overtime pay if you are a non-exempt employee under the law.  It doesn’t matter how your employer labels you (exempt, contractor, salaried, etc.) because the law controls how you are actually paid and whether you are entitled to overtime.  Exempt employees are not entitled to overtime pay because they are exempted by the New Jersey Wage and Hour laws and the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  Exempt employees include professional employees, administrative employees, executive employees, outside sales employees (80% of time spent selling out of the office), taxi drivers, seasonal employees, recreational employees and certain employees working in the field of agriculture.
If you do not fall into one of the categories mentioned above, you are most likely non-exempt and may be entitled to overtime pay at time and a half for any hours you work over 40 hours in a week.  Your employer is not permitted to average your hours over a 2 week or month long period in order to reduce your overtime.
You cannot waiver your right overtime compensation.  Any agreement between you and your employer to waive overtime pay or to accept less than time and a half is unenforceable and you are entitled to the full pay.
You are also entitled to overtime even if your employer did not ask you to work extra hours.  The law only requires that your employer know that you were working additional hours.  If you show up to work and your employer does not let you clock in and you are performing work, you are entitled to payment for the time you are working and overtime pay.  For example, you may be at work at 8:30 a.m. and reviewing emails at your computer.  Your employer knows you get in early, but won’t let you clock-in until 9:00 a.m.  You are entitled to an additional 30 minutes of pay and possibly overtime.

If you believe that you are entitled to overtime pay and have been denied overtime, please contact us for a free consultation.  For more information please read “Are you entitled to overtime.”

Dated: April 7, 2010 – Tom McKinney

About the Author
Tom McKinney is an experienced NJ Employment Lawyer in all major areas of labor and employment law, including discrimination, harassment, overtime violations, wage and hour claims, sexual harassment, wrongful discharge, Title VII, ADA, ADEA, FMLA, LAD, FLSA, and all other employment law claims. Tom is admitted to practice in the States of New Jersey and New York, United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, Southern District of New York, District of New Jersey, and United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Prior to forming the firm, Tom practiced at Gibbons P.C. in Newark, NJ. If you have any questions regarding this article, contact Tom here today.