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Wage & Hour

Overtime Calculations

Under federal law, the Fair Labor Standards Act, overtime compensation generally must be paid to covered employees (e.g., employees who are not subject to an exemption from the overtime protections) at a rate of at least 1.5 times their regular rate of pay for hours worked in excess of 40 per workweek. Some states have their own overtime laws as well.

Our overtime lawyers and staff are trained to recognize overtime calculation errors and are available to discuss whether your overtime pay is being calculated correctly.

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Overtime Pay Calculation Details

Below we provide some information about calculating overtime pay for those who may be covered by the overtime protections under federal law. For details about exemptions (or exceptions) from these protections, see the exemptions page on our website.

  • Workers Paid by the Hour
    If you are paid by the hour, your employer should pay you at least 1.5 times your regular hourly rate for each hour worked over 40 per workweek.
  • Workers Paid a Salary for a Regular or Specified Number of Hours
    If you are paid a salary for a regular or specified number of hours per workweek, your regular rate of pay is obtained by dividing your salary by the number of hours your salary is intended to cover. If you do not meet any of the exemptions to receiving overtime pay, you may be entitled to an additional 1/2 times your regular rate of pay for each hour you work over 40 per workweek, plus your salary.
  • Workers Paid on a Day Rate or Day Rate Plus Salary Basis
    If you are paid a day rate or a day rate plus salary, your regular rate of pay is obtained by dividing your weekly earnings by the number of hours you worked in a workweek. If you do not meet any of the exemptions from receiving overtime pay, you may be entitled to an additional 1/2 times your regular rate of pay for each hour you work over 40 per workweek, plus your day rate and/or salary.
  • Workers Paid on a Piecework Basis
    If you are paid on a piecework basis, your regular rate of pay is obtained by dividing your total weekly earnings by the total number of hours you work in a particular workweek. You are typically entitled to an additional 1/2 times your regular rate of pay for each hour you work over 40 per workweek, plus full piecework earnings.
  • Weekend and Holiday Work
    You are not generally entitled to an overtime premium solely because you perform work on a weekend or holiday. However, if this weekend or holiday work results in overtime hours worked in the workweek, you may be entitled to overtime pay.

Examples of Potential Age Discrimination

Below are examples of ways an employer may calculate the overtime rate of pay incorrectly.

  • Paying straight time (the employee’s regular rate of pay) for overtime worked, rather than 1.5 times the regular rate of pay. We commonly see this in the home health care industry.
  • Failing to include bonus and/or commissions earnings when calculating overtime pay. This is common in sales jobs.
  • Failing to include non-discretionary bonuses (such as production based bonuses) when calculating the regular rate of pay used to calculate overtime pay.
  • Paying on a day rate only, with no additional half time overtime premium for hours worked over 40 in a workweek. This is especially prevalent in the oil and gas industry.

The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. Read full Disclaimer.

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