You can’t help but notice there’s a growing societal interest in raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour.  In 2015, selective cities, states, and counties passed legislation that will phase in a $15 an hour minimum wage over a period of time. The state of California recently passed legislation that will raise minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2022.  Likewise, New York City fast food workers will be paid $15 an hour by 2018, and by the year 2021 the state’s minimum wage will be raised to the same amount.

In the 21st Century, people fight to make a living wage, but do they know where the fight for fair wages began?

The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 was a controversial legislation for its time which was signed into law by President D. Roosevelt. The Fair Labor Standards Act was considered to be an important piece of legislation due to the fact that it would have a powerful impact on the labor movement in America. According to the United States Department of Labor, the FLSA “banned oppressive child labor and set the minimum hourly wage at 25 cents, and the maximum workweek at 44 hours.” Since the inception of the FLSA, there have been over twenty amendments made, most of which encompass raising the Federal minimum wage.

What does the Fair Labor Standards Act do for employee rights in 2016?

The FLSA continues to establish workers’ rights and the right to fair wages through setting a 40 hour work week, establishing a federal minimum wage, restrictions on child labor, and determining the requirements for overtime pay. Sadly, some workers don’t even realize the Fair Labor Standards Act is designed to protect them especially in cases where an employer is exploitative. Here are some of the ways employers may violate the FLSA:

  • Violating the “Tip Credit” – In order for an employer to claim a “tip credit” they have to pay their employee an hourly wage of $2.13. If the tips and hourly wage do not equal the minimum hourly wage the employer MUST make up the difference. If your employer is not making up the difference in wages contact TMH Law to see if you have an FLSA claim.
  • Failure to Pay Overtime – If you’ve been denied overtime pay, you may have an FLSA claim. Overtime pay is determined by your job duties, and not by your job title. A non-exempt employee is entitled to overtime pay at one and half times the regular pay rate over a 40 hour work week.
  • Failing to Pay For All Time Worked – When you’re hired to do a specific job, you also are paid to do that job. So at no point should you not being getting paid for all your time worked. If you’ve been asked to work “off the clock” more times than you can remember it might be time to let the Law Office of Thomas More Holland remind your employer of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

For more information contact TMH Law today at (215) 543-6771.