You get a new job, and everything seems to be going well. You even pick up some extra hours your first week, and everyone seems thrilled that you were willing to go above and beyond. You’re just excited to earn even more than you expected.
Then you get your check, and they just paid you your normal rate for overtime. You expected time and a half. You ask your employer what happened, and they tell you that you’re still on “probation” because you’re new to the company. After three months, you’ll become eligible for overtime pay. Is this legal?
All employees get overtime
This is not legal and it is a violation of your rights. All workers deserve overtime pay for overtime hours. This means you should have been paid time and a half — i.e., $15 dollar per hour for overtime hours if your normal rate is $10 per hour.
Your employer may have done this on purpose, as a way to save money. They may have assumed you just wouldn’t know what your rights were or that you’d be too nervous to lose your new job and you wouldn’t say anything.
On the other hand, your employer may actually believe that what they’re doing is legal. Perhaps it was poorly explained to them in the past and no one has ever complained. They’ve always done this and now they just believe that is how the wage and hour laws can be applied.
It’s time to explore your options
No matter why this happened, it is time to look into your legal options. Wage and hour violations have to be taken seriously.