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Overtime Pay

When Are Employees Eligible for Overtime Pay?

For Tennessee workers earning wages, your time is your livelihood. Employees working more than 40 hours in a week may be eligible for overtime pay in Tennessee. Employers are required to pay time and a half to any eligible employees working over 40 hours in a week. While the law requires that employers pay employees overtime pay for working beyond 40 hours, employers may attempt to get around overtime laws. If you believe that your employer has wrongfully withheld overtime pay from you, contact one of our Tennessee wage and hour attorneys at The Higgins Firm.

Calculating Overtime Pay

Overtime pay is calculated based on the amount of time spent working in a workweek. Typically, a workweek will be a seven-day period. In addition under overtime law, a day is a 24-hour period that begins at a time of the employers’ choosing. Upon working the first minute beyond 40 hours in a workweek, a worker is eligible to receive time and a half for the amount of time worked until the end of that workweek. To determine your time and a half rate, multiply the worker’s regular rate of pay times 1.5. Although an employer may tell you otherwise, overtime pay is not optional. Employers must pay overtime to eligible workers.

Employers May Attempt to Avoid Paying Overtime

There are a number of ways that employers may attempt to avoid paying overtime to workers. One of the most common techniques is an employer shifting hours between workweeks. If your employer often changes when your workweek begins or ends, you may have an overtime compensation claim. In addition, employers may attempt to deduct time taken for breaks while on the job. However, any break under 30 minutes must be paid and counted towards your workweek.

Are Salaried Employees Eligible for Overtime?

Although employers are required to pay overtime to eligible workers, not every worker is eligible for overtime pay. Salaried employees meeting two conditions are not eligible for overtime pay. Salaried employees must (1) earn a certain minimum salary for their work and (2) perform certain job functions. These requirements act to prevent employers from withholding overtime pay merely by paying a salary. Those employees earning less than $23,660 per year are eligible for overtime pay even if the position is labeled as “salaried.”

In addition, management employees and administrative employees may be exempt from overtime pay. However, these positions also have certain requirements that must be met for employers to be exempt from paying employees overtime. A management employee must supervise at least two individuals and manage a department or enterprise. An administrative employee must directly influence the business of the employer and have discretionary powers. However, employers may try to get around these requirements to avoid paying overtime. While many jobs have titles that are exempt from overtime pay, the job must include certain duties. If your employer has not met these requirements for your position, you may have a claim for overtime pay.

What Jobs May Be Eligible for Overtime Compensation?

There are a number of jobs that commonly result in overtime compensation claims. Some of those jobs include:

  • Nurses including assistants, aides, shift leads, LPNs
  • Financial managers, loan officers, analysts, brokers
  • Facilities managers, book keepers, tech support, on call support
  • Salespersons, clerks, account executives, relationship managers

If you have questions about your overtime compensation claim, we encourage you to contact The Higgins Firm at 1-800-705-2121.

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