Due to the rampant increase of wage violations in the construction industry, our Clearwater construction attorneys believe it is vital that every professional understand the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division classification guidelines as well as the ramifications for misclassifying workers.
In Part 1 of our article series, we discussed the difference between independent contractors and employees. In this second part, we’ll continue our discussion further. Companies looking to cut corners to avoid paying taxes, worker’s compensation, or overtime wages should beware of the increasing risk of prosecution for breaking the law.
Why it Matters
Classifying workers isn’t a task to be handled carelessly. Properly classifying workers is a matter of federal and state law. When employees are classified correctly, it ensures they receive the compensation legally required according to their status. This includes receiving overtime pay, workers compensation, and minimum wage. However, when employers misclassify employees they are affecting the government’s ability to collect federal and state mandated taxes appropriately. This also affects other employers who classify their employees as legally required.
Penalties for Employers
It’s one thing to misclassify a worker by mistake, but intentionally misclassifying workers comes with the harshest penalties and fines. While it usually occurs with workers in lower paying jobs, it is still a major problem in many companies, so companies should be aware that misclassifying employees is a felony in Florida. If you are faced with a claim of worker misclassification, we recommend you contact one of our Clearwater construction lawyers to discuss your rights and obligations under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.