Do I have a case regarding a right to back overtime pay?

When I started for a company I was homeless. They gave me a tent to sleep in and told me after the first week they would pay me salary and give me a house. After the week they let me move in to the house and paid me $609 a week. After a month, they gave me a letter stating the house was not part of my pay and they could kick me out at anytime. That’s when I quit. I then found an article that states the minimum pay for overtime exemption was raised to $913 a week 6 months ago. Does this mean the company owes me overtime pay for 44 hours a week? Also, they only gave us 1 30 minute break for lunch on a 12 hour shift. With no accessible bathrooms at the shops.

Asked on May 4, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

The increase in salary for the overtime exemption never went into effect: a judge (in Texas, I think) stopped it. The salary level for overtime stayed at approximately $23,600/year, or a bit over $400 per week. So your pay was over that threshold. That said, you *still* may have been owed an overtime premium for when you worked more than 40 hours per week: being paid a sufficient salary is only part of the test for whether overtime is due or not. To be exempt from overtime, your job duties and responsibilities must meet one or or more of the sets of criteria for exemptions, such as the administrative employee exemption, professional exemption, executive (really, "mangerial") exemption, etc. You can find those exemptions on the U.S. Department of Labor website: look them up and compare to your job. If your job did not meet at least one of them, then despite being paid a high-enough salary, you may be owed overtime. If you think that is the case, contact your state or the federl Dept. of Labor to inquire about filing an overtime complaint.


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