Mortgage Industry Employees – Misclassification As Exempt From Overtime Pay
Jobs in the mortgage industry require a lot of hard work, and unfortunately, banks and mortgage companies have notoriously poor pay practices. As a result many loan officers, underwriters, and processors are denied their rightful compensation.
Frequent pay violations in the industry include:
Employees are often improperly classified as exempt from overtime pay when the nature of their work entitles them to overtime pay under the law.
Banks and mortgage companies have routinely misclassified their loan officers (also referred to as mortgage originators, loan originators, mortgage consultants, and account executives) as exempt from overtime pay and minimum wages. Over the past ten years, our firm has represented more than 10,000 loan officers from across the country in lawsuits against banks and mortgage companies for unpaid wages. In these and other cases, most courts have found that loan officers are entitled to minimum wages and overtime pay when their primary job duty is selling loans from inside an office.
These rulings are now supported by the United States Department of Labor, which recently issued an important publication reaching the same conclusion. Click here to read that publication. Just because you reached an agreement with your employer that you will be paid on a salary, salary plus commissions, or commission basis, does not mean that you are not entitled to your overtime pay. You cannot waive your minimum wage and overtime rights by an agreement with your employer.
Many employers have reclassified their loan officers and are now paying minimum wages and overtime pay. Loan officers who are reclassified may have a claim for the minimum wages and overtime pay they were denied prior to the reclassification. Even if the employer pays some of these pre-reclassification wages due, an employee may still have a claim if the employer did not compensate them for all the hours they worked.
If you are a loan officer and were not paid minimum wages or overtime pay, you may be able to make a claim for your unpaid wages.
Banks and mortgage companies often misclassify underwriters as exempt from overtime pay and minimum wages. A recent court ruling from the Second Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals confirmed that many mortgage underwriters are not exempt from overtime pay under the “administrative exemption,” and therefore, are entitled to overtime pay when they work more than forty hours per week. Click here to read this decision.
Many employers have reclassified their underwriters and are now paying overtime pay. Underwriters who are reclassified may have a claim for the overtime pay they were denied prior to the reclassification. Even if the employer pays some of these pre-reclassification wages due, an employee may still have a claim if the employer did not compensate them for all the overtime hours they worked.
Many mortgage companies and banks pressure their hourly employees to work off-the-clock and not record all their hours worked. Some have a policy that overtime is only paid when that time is pre-approved by management. Consequently, hourly mortgage employees regularly have to underreport their hours worked and, thus, are not paid the full amount that they deserve. Employees are entitled to be paid for the time they work, regardless of a policy that the time must be pre-approved.
Meal and Rest Break Violations
Many mortgage employees have to work through their meal or rest breaks because of the amount of work they have to get done and goals they have to meet. Employees are entitled to be paid for the time they work, even if they are working during a meal or rest break. Moreover, certain states require that employees be given their allotted breaks every day or employers will be held liable under state law.
Our firm has handled hundreds of minimum wage and overtime cases for mortgage employees. If you worked as a loan officer, underwriter, or processor in the last three years and were denied some or all of your pay, you may have a claim. If you have questions about this investigation or would like to discuss your potential claims, please contact us.