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Your employer expects you to work a certain number of hours every week. When your employer asks or requires you to work more than this expected number of hours, they could owe you overtime pay.

Federal overtime provisions contained in the Fair Labor Standards Act state that all employees who work more than 40 hours in a workweek should receive overtime pay. The amount they receive should not be less than 1.5 times their regular pay rate.

Defining A Workweek

The overtime provisions contained in the FLSA apply on a workweek basis. Employers base your workweek on a fixed, recurring period that spans 168 hours, or seven 24-hour periods. A workweek can start on any day of the week and at any time of the day, as long as it extends consecutively for seven days.

Exemptions To This Law

Overtime laws do not extend to all employees, depending on what types of duties they perform and their regular work schedule. For example, if you are an exempt employee, you may not qualify for overtime pay, even if you work more than 40 hours within a seven-day period. Some employers are also exempt from following overtime standards, depending on their business’ industry.

If you should have received overtime pay for working an extended period of time during a prior workweek, but your employer has yet to provide this compensation, talk to your supervisor or human resources department about the issue. If they do not correct the problem, you may want to seek legal counsel.