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Wage and Hour Laws Archives

Understanding minimum wage and overtime laws in the U.S.

Paychecks are the major motivation for most of the workforce in the U.S. Compensating employees for their good work is the least employers can do. Federal and state governments recognize that wages are important for the workforce, and enforce strict laws to make sure employees receive their fair share of wages. Each state decides its own minimum wage, depending on living conditions and the costs of living.

Democrats adopt $15 minimum wage in party platform

The Democratic Party, due to the urging of Senator Sanders, has adopted a $15 minimum wage as a party platform. The party platform refers to the positions that the Democratic Party will take during the election and the goals that they will try to achieve. The $15 minimum wage marks a significant victory for Senator Sanders, which made that a central tenet of his campaign.n.

Home care workers wage rights are protected by law

Home care workers, like certified nursing assistants, are among the most over-worked and under-paid professions in the United States. Many home care workers often work two or three days straight without any significant breaks. These situations force workers to take brief naps in their car, grab a bite in between clients and other quick fixes. It is a disservice to the patients and families they help and it crushes many home care workers who are dedicated, hard-working and love their job.

Gig Economy Continues to Grow

The gig economy is all over the news. Recent stories about class actions against Uber and new contracts with Lyft drivers dominate the news cycle. But many of these stories overlook the true impact of the gig economy. The Internet enabled the growth of small businesses and contract work, this trend has been ongoing long before smartphones and apps overtook the phone market.

The Department of Labor issued a new overtime rule

Typically, you go to work, clock in and earn your paycheck. But what happens if your employer needs to keep you late? In those situations, you are entitled to overtime. Generally, overtime kicks in if you work more than 40 hours a week. For each hour worked over that threshold you get overtime, or time-and-a-half pay.

Uber lawsuit settles

The "gig" economy is continually evolving. Government regulators, industry insiders and workers do not know what, if any, protections extend to "gig" workers. Are they entitled to a minimum wage? Are they employees or independent contractors? How do they fit into the tax system? Should a new classification of worker be invented that blends employee and contractor rules? Uber and several thousand drivers just settled a major lawsuit that may partially answer some of these questions.

You may be entitled to the Prevailing Wage

Most everyone is aware of the minimum wage but that is not the only minimum wage out there. There are different wages for a variety of jobs, including small employers, waitresses and workers who work on public works projects. Public works projects mean jobs contracted out by the government to accomplish public works like bridges and roads. That special wage rate is referred to as the "prevailing wage." This article will go over the prevailing wage and how it could apply to you and your co-workers.

Is your job exempt from overtime pay? Part 2

It would be easy to say that 90 percent of jobs do not fall under these exemptions. Unfortunately, this is not true. As discussed in a previous article, overtime is not an automatic right for many jobs. This article will continue discussing the various exemptions from overtime.

Is your job exempt from overtime pay, pt. 1?

The Fair Labor Standards Act (or "FLSA") establishes many minimum standards for workers' rights. Among these standards is mandatory minimum and overtime pay. The minimum wage, depending on your job, is typically $7.25. Overtime generally activates when you work either (a) more than eight hours in a single shift or (b) more than 40 hours in a week. But, these rules are not monolithic. Certain jobs are exempted from these requirements. This article will go over some of the jobs that are exempted.

New minimum wage rule for contractors

Way back in February 2014, the Obama administration proposed new minimum wage rules for contractors hired by the federal government. The new minimum wage was raised to $10.15 and was finally implemented January 1st of this year. This is a $.05 increase over the original proposal as set forth by the Obama administration. From now on, all contractors working for the federal government must be paid this minimum wage.