Many workers in Tennessee rely upon overtime pay to put bread on the table and even to get ahead a little. When employers owe overtime pay but do not pay it, employees are left with questions, grievances and financial concerns. Not everyone who is denied overtime pay deserves it, but many do. You may have a valid unpaid overtime claim if any of the following circumstances apply:
- You worked more than 40 hours in a workweek but were not paid time and one half for the time you worked in excess of 40 hours
- You worked overtime but made less than $10.88 per hour (the overtime minimum wage in Tennessee) for your time in excess of 40 hours
- You were not paid overtime because you are classified as exempt (typically reserved for managerial positions), but your actual job duties do not warrant this classification
Overtime laws apply to many classes of workers, not only those who clock regular hours. If you are a tipped or commissioned employee and put in more than 40 hours in a workweek, you also deserve overtime pay.
Many different circumstances give rise to overtime claims. Even the most well-meaning of employers can make mistakes and fail to follow complex overtime laws to a T. In some cases, unscrupulous employers knowingly break the law. Regardless your circumstances, you have strong state and federal laws on your side.
What can I do?
If your employer wrongly denied you overtime pay, you have two years to bring a claim (or three years if your employer knowingly violated the law). It is not wise to delay, however, as these claims require evidence and the sooner you act the more information will be at your disposal.
An experienced employment law attorney can help you pursue compensation for your backpay and other damages such as attorney’s fees. In less common circumstances, punitive damages may be available. It may be stressful and even intimidating to bring a claim against your employer, but with a skilled lawyer on your side, you can rest assured that your rights will be protected.