What do I do if my employer hasn’t paid me overtime?

Working in excess of 40 hours a week is not something people typically enjoy doing. However, for non-exempt employees across New York, it can be financially rewarding thanks to overtime pay. 

Eligible employees who work overtime are entitled to receive one-and-a-half times their regular pay rate for every hour over 40 worked in a week. However, some employers fail to pay overtime for any number of reasons, from intentional wage theft to inadvertent employee misclassification. Whatever the reason may be, if you are owed overtime, then there are steps you can take to collect the money you deserve.

Keep track of your schedule

Whether you clock in and out with a time management system or record your hours yourself, keeping accurate records of time you worked is crucial when it comes to building a claim seeking unpaid wages. Make sure you track your hours, making special note of overtime hours.

Talk to your employer

Resolving unpaid overtime issues could be as easy as talking to your employer. In cases where there is a miscommunication or reporting error, simply calling your employer’s attention to the issue could be sufficient in getting a resolution.

File a formal complaint

If talking to your employer is not possible or ineffective, then filing a formal (and confidential) complaint with the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division can become necessary. The agency will investigate your claims and determine if you are owed back wages.

No matter what you decide to do, know your rights

You have rights as an employee, and if you are eligible for overtime pay and work overtime, then you should receive overtime pay. If your employer violates your rights and overtime laws, then you can and should take action to resolve the situation.

With legal guidance and a thorough understanding of your options, you can take the appropriate steps to pursue the money you deserve. 

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