Many people telecommute at least one day a week. If you consider this an option, it is essential to know your rights and responsibilities under the law. Am I entitled to overtime pay if I am working from home? The answer depends on how many hours you work each day and whether or not you are considered exempt from overtime laws. This article discusses what constitutes “hours worked” for employees who work remotely – including information about who qualifies for overtime pay, when they are eligible, and how much they must be paid.
Workers who are covered by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) are entitled to overtime. The FLSA requires that covered nonexempt employees be paid one and a half times their regular pay rate for every hour worked over 40 hours in a workweek.
States may have overtime laws that are more or less beneficial to workers than the federal rules.
Working from home should not take away your right to overtime pay! If you work more than 40 hours in a week, the time worked at home must be included when determining whether or not you qualify for extra compensation if you do not receive it.
-the kind of work that is done;
-where the work is done, and -when the employee performs their duties. Your boss cannot simply say, “you can’t get overtime because you’re working from home,” without providing evidence that all three criteria have been met. For example, let’s say your office provides private spaces where employees can meet with clients or take care of personal business, and you do not use this space. If your boss cannot prove that the job duties could not be performed in a traditional office setting, you should likely qualify for overtime pay.
The FLSA does not require employers to offer employees any compensation at all (this includes hourly, salaried, commissioned workers). However, if an employer provides OT as part of their benefits package, they must follow the guidelines set by federal law. According to these rules, only those classified as “exempt” under FLSA wage regulations are ineligible for extra payment; nonexempt employees are entitled to receive time-and-a-half wages even when working from home. The FLSA defines an “exempt” employee based on the type of work, their salary level, and how much control a company has over them.
Salaried workers are exempt from overtime laws if they earn at least $455 per week according to FLSA standards (this is known as the “white collar exemption”). Employees who meet this criterion may be working 50 hours or more each week without receiving extra pay because there isn’t any hourly limit set by law for these employees.
Hourly wage earners must receive one and a half times their regular pay rate for all time worked more than 40 hours during a single workweek. Nonexempt employees can include home office time when determining whether or not they have reached the weekly overtime maximum.
As an employee, it is your responsibility to keep track of the time you spend working from home and ensure that your employer does not violate overtime laws. Employers are required by law to maintain accurate records of hours worked and wages paid for all employees (exempt or nonexempt). If you suspect that your company may be violating wage regulations because they hire many telecommuting workers without meeting federal requirements – or do not pay OT when they should – there are several steps you can take:
-Contact a lawyer specializing in employment issues, file a complaint with the Department of Labor, contact relevant state agencies where you work from home, and speak up about what’s going on in your workplace.
-If you are an exempt employee, take a closer look at the type of work you do and make sure that it indeed does not require physical presence or could be done elsewhere without interfering with personal matters.
-Ensure to follow company guidelines for taking care of personal business during working hours because this will help strengthen your claim if overtime laws have been violated.
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