The right to fair pay is one of the most basic employment rights in Indiana and across the United States. Workers in any direct employment relationship with a company should receive pay for the time that they work that complies with both state and federal wage laws.
Employers generally need to provide at least minimum wage to workers. If their employees work particularly long shifts or come in on the weekends, they may have reason to ask for overtime pay. Sometimes, companies actively try to avoid overtime pay obligations. They may even lie to their workers about their rights.
Who actually has the right to receive overtime pay for the time that they worked?
Hourly and daily workers
Some companies pay workers on a daily basis. The workers receive compensation for each shift or day that they work. Many other companies pay their workers on an hourly basis and will compute what workers earn based on time clock records.
Both hourly and daily workers have a right to overtime compensation when they put in more than 40 hours per work week. Although some companies may have internal policies saying they do not pay overtime wages, if the workers put in the excess work, the company has a legal obligation to pay them for their time.
Non-exempt salary workers
Many people oversimplify overtime rules and will state that those who receive salary pay are exempt from overtime laws. However, there is a bit more nuance to the federal overtime rules than that. The Department of Labor maintains a minimum salary level.
Workers who do not earn at least $35,568 or $684 per week have a right to claim pay when they put in more than 40 hours. It does not matter that the company pays them on a salary basis if the salary does not meet the exemption threshold that was most recently updated in 2019.
Companies that have attempted to manipulate or trick workers into giving up their right to overtime pay often refuse to pay rightful wages even when employees bring the issue to the attention of the business. Filing a wage and hour lawsuit against the business may be one of the only ways of recouping unpaid overtime when a company has failed to abide by wage and hour laws.