Concern over how new overtime claim rules impacts workers

On Behalf of | Oct 3, 2019 | Employee Rights |

One of the biggest issues over which Minnesota workers embark on a dispute with their employer is due to an overtime claim. Since unpaid overtime can violate employee rights, it is imperative to understand the law and when it is possible to lodge a claim to receive what is owed.

A significant part of that is to know how the United States Department of Labor determines when workers should receive overtime pay. Another issue is how employers might try to manipulate worker hours and use technicalities to avoid paying. When there is a disagreement about overtime, having legal help can sift through it and assist workers in getting what they are owed.

A new rule from the Labor Department will expand the number of workers who can get overtime. It allows approximately 1.3 million workers to receive this benefit. However, there are concerns from worker advocates that there should be more workers who will be paid overtime if they go beyond a normal 40-hour workweek.

The previous rule granted overtime to workers who earned around $23,660 annually. This amount would generally mean that a worker is categorized as a salaried worker. When the new law goes into effect at the start of 2020, it rises to $35,568.

But, there was a prior proposal by the last presidential administration that would have increased that amount to $47,000. More than 3 million workers would then have been eligible for overtime. Some workers who were promoted from an hourly job to a salaried job found that they needed to work extra hours and did not receive overtime for it, thereby negating the benefits.

The salary level for overtime had not been changed since 2004. The new proposal was issued by the Trump administration. Another concern is that the minimum does not adjust based on inflation, so it might take a substantial number of years before it is changed again.

While some employers are fair with their workers regarding overtime, others are not so adherent to the law and might use these new rules to benefit themselves, get extra hours out of their workers and not pay them overtime. For people who believe they have had their employee rights violated when they have worked overtime, it is wise to understand the current and future rules and be fully protected.