According to the Economic Policy Institute, in the ten most densely populated states, 2.4 million workers lose $8 billion annually. Florida makes up for approximately 7 percent of this unpaid income. Employment law is regulated by both state and federal legislatures and is considered among the most complex forms of law. If you feel that you’re employment rights have been violated and you are owed unpaid wages, it’s critical to hire an experienced Tampa wage and hour lawyer.
As Tampa wage and hour lawyers, we know several of the tactics employers use to avoid paying employees their rightfully earned wages. In this two-part article, we will cover some of the most common ways employers violate these workplace laws. In the second section, we will focus on when employers fail to pay overtime.
Unpaid Time Worked
One of the most common ways employers fail to compensate employees is during meal breaks and when employees perform work “off the clock.” Although Florida doesn’t have any laws pertaining to meal breaks, if an employee is performing work tasks during their lunch break they should be compensated for that time worked. Similarly, any work performed at the end of the day (cleaning, storing items or equipment) should be considered compensable time as well.
Although vacation time may vary depending on the job and the employment contract an employee signs, you are entitled to compensation for any vacation time accrued throughout your employment tenure. So if you have ten days of vacation time accrued at the time of your resignation or termination, you should be compensated for that paid time off.
Many retail and sales jobs feature commissions and bonuses that reward excellent performance of the employee’s job tasks. Unfortunately, many times these promised bonuses are not honored by employers. If these bonuses are highlighted in your employment contract and the employer fails to compensate you then they are violating the law.
Misclassification as Independent Contractor
Many employees are classified as an “independent contractor” meaning that they are considered by law a self-employed worker. However, often the employee is unaware that they are classified as this or should not be classified this way. If this is the case, the employee may be entitled to some additional compensation including overtime pay.
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.