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What Constitutes a Wage and Hour Dispute?

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Our South Jersey Employment Lawyers at The Gold Law Firm P.C. Can Fight to Protect Your Rights at Work

Issues surrounding compensation and hours are commonplace in many workplaces. Whether you are an employer striving to meet legal requirements or an employee advocating for fair treatment, wage and hour disputes can lead to serious conflicts and the need for legal intervention.

Wage and hour disputes pertain to issues with compensation and working hours. Common examples include:

  • Unpaid wages or overtime: Employees may file claims if they believe they were not adequately compensated for hours worked beyond the standard 40-hour workweek.
  • Misclassification: Employers may mistakenly categorize workers as exempt from overtime pay when they should be classified as non-exempt. This often occurs with salaried employees who do not meet the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) criteria for exemption.
  • Meal and rest break violations: Some states, including New Jersey, have specific laws regarding meal and rest breaks for employees. Violations of those can lead to wage and hour disputes.
  • Off-the-clock work: Employers may also require employees to perform work-related tasks outside of their regular hours without compensating them for this time, which is illegal.

How Can Employers Comply with Wage and Hour Laws?

Employers can undertake several proactive measures to prevent wage and hour disputes. They should regularly audit payroll records to identify discrepancies or potential violations. Employers should also provide employees with explicit policies and procedures concerning wages, overtime, and break times.

Here are more tips:

  • Training managers and supervisors on wage and hour laws to minimize violations.
  • It is advisable to seek guidance from legal counsel to review employment practices and policies for compliance with federal and state laws.
  • Implementing robust time-tracking systems to accurately record hours worked by employees is essential.

What Steps Should I Take if I Believe My Rights Have Been Violated?

We recommend documenting all pertinent information if you suspect your rights under wage and hour laws have been transgressed. This includes hours worked, wages earned, and any instances of unpaid overtime or denied breaks.

Reviewing company policies and employment contracts is also important, as they should explain the rights and obligations of the involved parties. Discussing the issue informally with your employer or HR department to seek a resolution is also a good idea.

When these methods do not resolve the issue, you might consider complaining to the appropriate government agency, such as the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor or the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development. If you need help, an experienced employment attorney can explore your legal options and devise the most effective course of action.

What Legal Remedies Are Available for Wage and Hour Disputes?

Employees who prevail in wage and hour disputes may be entitled to a variety of legal remedies:

  • Recovery of unpaid wages, overtime pay, and any other outstanding compensation owed.
  • Meal and rest break premiums.
  • If the employee’s claim is vindicated, attorneys’ fees and court costs may also be recoverable.
  • Injunctive relief may be granted, such as reinstatement or revisions to company policies or practices to ensure compliance with future wage and hour laws.

Our South Jersey Employment Lawyers at The Gold Law Firm P.C. Can Fight to Protect Your Rights at Work

Do you need legal assistance for your wage and hour dispute? Contact our skilled South Jersey employment lawyers at The Gold Law Firm P.C. today for experienced guidance and advocacy. Call 215-569-1999 or complete our online form for a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia and Pennsauken, New Jersey, we serve clients in South Jersey, including Cherry Hill, Haddonfield, Marlton, Moorestown, and Mount Laurel.

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