Common FLSA violations

Even though the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) offers a strong framework to protect workers’ rights, employers still commonly commit FLSA violations. An employer who through carelessness or willful conduct violates the FLSA can be liable for civil money penalties (CMPs) of up to $1,100 for each violation for repeated or willful violations of the minimum wage and overtime requirements of the Act. CMPs may be assessed for repeated violations, which effectively show a pattern of disregard for the law and that the employer had knowledge that its conduct was illegal.

The FLSA is a law that covers a wide range of areas concerning employee rights and employer obligations. The following information shows common FLSA violations employers commit.

Misclassifying Employees

An employer may attempt to misclassify an employee’s status under the FLSA to an exempt employee, thus the employee can avoid paying required overtime pay.

Claiming that Overtime Work Was Voluntary

FLSA violations can occur when an employee claims that his or her employee worked overtime “voluntarily” and therefore not compensable. The FLSA does not recognize “voluntary” or “off-the-clock” work as such if an employee is working, he or she must be paid for that work.

Neglecting Recordkeeping Responsibilities

The FLSA requires employers to maintain records pertaining to wages and hours worked be kept for all non-exempt employees for at least a three year period. This includes the total hours worked each workday and workweek, daily and weekly earnings, total overtime paid, total wages paid, deductions or additions from wages, and the date of payment for each pay period

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