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Fort Lauderdale Employment Law Blog

Should National Minimum Wage Standards Vary By Region?

The first minimum wage law was passed in Massachusetts in 1912. Since that time, the legality, logistics, and effectiveness of a minimum wage have been hotly debated. There is a new push to change the one-size-fits-all minimum wage regulations in favor of a more flexible, and possibly more effective, regional minimum wage.

The Trump Administration's Department of Labor Is Changing The Way Employers Distribute Tips and Restaurant Workers Aren't Happy

Recently proposed changes to the handling of tip distribution may create major issues for restaurant employees. In July of this year, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced its intention to reverse current Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) rules expressly prohibiting the pooling of tips with anyone other than a valid pool of other tipped employees. These regulations, which went into effect in 2011 under the Obama administration, clearly designate tips as the property of the employees who earned them. As such, employers are prohibited from using this money for anything other than minimum wage tip credit.

Constitution Revision Proposal Could Require E-Verifcation By Florida Employers

A controversial proposal regarding employee verification methods in Florida has just moved one step closer to appearing on the 2018 ballot. A Florida Constitution Revision Commission panel voted unanimously to back proposal P29. If passed, it would require all Florida employers to use the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Employment Authorization Program, also called E-Verify, to confirm that all new hires are eligible for employment in the United States.

What Emerging Multiracial Plaintiff Cases Suggest About Employment Discrimination Law

Beginning in 2000, the United States Census Bureau began allowing respondents to choose more than one racial category. Following that census, 2.4 percent of the U.S. population identified themselves as multiracial. In the 2010 census, that number increased to 2.9 percent. There is speculation that the multiracial population in the United States may have been underestimated and the number of those who identify as such will continue to grow.

Employees Who Work on Vacation May Not Be Doing Employers Any Favors

The days of employees taking relaxing vacations away from their jobs are fading fast. Thanks to the constant connection created by technology, employees are finding it more difficult than ever to unplug and step away from their jobs. While they may intend to rest and relax during their vacation time, they inevitably find themselves checking email, answering work-related calls, or even working on projects.

How​ ​A​ ​Startup's​ ​Legal​ ​Battle​ ​Could Redefine​ ​Tech​ ​Workers'​ ​Rights

Contracts that prevent employees from working for competitors after terminating their current employment are commonly known as non-compete agreements. These agreements are common practice for many Florida businesses. They are designed to, among other things, protect your business from unscrupulous employees who may try to share trade secrets and other proprietary information with their new employers.

Florida Minimum Wage Set To Increase Jan 1, 2018: What Employers Should Know

Since the Florida minimum wage law was passed in 2004, Florida employers are responsible for keeping up with both state and Federal regulations. On January 1, 2018, the minimum wage in Florida is set to increase. Here's what you need to know.

The US Secretary Of Labor Has Had Enough: Confronting Visa Program Fraud and Abuse Nationwide

On October 9, 2017, U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta issued a statement announcing the Trump administration's commitment to battling Federal visa program fraud and abuse. He has instructed the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to vigorously enforce all laws under its jurisdiction and aggressively prosecute violators.

Understanding the Legality of Individual Arbitration Clauses in Employment Contracts

More employers have recently started adding individual arbitration clauses to their employment contracts. These clauses essentially state that employees who have a legal complaint against their employer cannot file a joint complaint with other employees who have had similar experiences.

When Does an Employer Have to Pay Overtime in Florida?

Employers in Florida have an obligation to familiarize themselves with overtime pay regulations. Employers are subject to the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) as well as state law.The Federal overtime rules state that all non-exempt employees must be paid a rate of 1.5 times their regular wage for any hours worked over the standard 40-hour work-week. These regulations are enforced by the United States Department of Labor (DOL).What is NOT Covered by Overtime Rules?For employees over the age of 16, there are no rules limiting the number of hours an employee can work in a single week. There is also no mandatory increase in pay for working on weekends, nights, or holidays unless the worker has exceeded a 40-hour work week.Understanding Overtime CalculationsEmployers may find themselves in violation of overtime rules if they fail to understand the calculation details. Here are some of the most common mistakes employers make.Improperly Defining the Work Week

The FLSA defines a work week as a regularly-occurring period of seven consecutive 24-hour periods. This does not necessarily have to be a calendar-week. The "week" can start on any day and at any time of the day as long as the 7-day period is consistent from one pay period to the next.It's important to note that hours worked cannot be averaged over a period of two weeks or more. Doing so will clearly put you in violation of the rules.Underestimating Base PayWhen calculating overtime pay, you must understand the base rate at which the 1.5 multiplier applies. In many cases, bonus pay is required to be included in this calculation.Failing to Pay on Time

When overtime applies, the additional wages typically must be paid on the regular payday for the week in which the extra hours were worked.Failure to ComplyEmployers who fail to comply with Federal overtime regulations may be subject to private lawsuits by their employees. In addition, if the DOL discovers violations, they will typically require employers to pay employees back wages owed and offer solutions to remedy the problem.Employers who have been found to willfully violate overtime rules are subject to a fine of $10,000 and criminal prosecution. If a second offense occurs, imprisonment is possible. Repeated violations can also result in civil monetary penalties that apply individually to each violation.Exempt Employees

Certain types of employees are considered exempt from overtime rules. Employers are not required to pay overtime wages for certain exempt positions. Details regarding exemptions can be found on the US Department of Labor website.The key to avoiding problems with overtime pay is to clearly understand your obligations to your employees. If you aren't sure whether your employees are exempt from overtime provisions or need further clarification regarding the calculation rules, contact your local Wage and Hour District Office for assistance or contact us at Danz & Kronengold, PL. at our website danzlaw.net.

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