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3 ways to protect yourself with the upcoming changes in overtime rules

Later this year, the rules that govern overtime pay in the U.S. will be changing. The change will raise the earning threshold for overtime eligibility, making more employees eligible to receive time-and-a-half pay for any hours worked over 40. To learn more about the details of this change, you can read this article from the U.S. Department of Labor.

What does this change mean for Wisconsin employees? Elements of your job could be adjusted in the coming months in a number of different ways. Some employers may give a raise in an effort to make you exempt from overtime pay; others will change time-tracking methods. Whatever happens, you want to be sure you are compensated fairly and properly during this transition.

In order to do this, you should reassess and monitor a few elements of your job.

  1. Your role: If you get a promotion that makes you exempt from receiving overtime, make sure the promotion is not just a new, creative title for performing the same work. Your actual job should fit the guidelines set in the Fair Labor Standards Act in order to be exempt from overtime compensation.
  2. Time-keeping methods: If your employer requests that you work over unpaid breaks; work after clocking out; or, be available during your time off, your employer could be violating FLSA rules. Accurate time keeping is essential in making sure your pay matches the number of worked hours. In order to protect themselves, employers may enforce stricter work schedules, so be prepared for that as well.
  3. Hourly pay: With new transitions taking place, make sure you closely and regularly review pay stubs, including your hourly rate. If the pay rate is off or if you are not receiving the full 150 percent of your hourly rate for overtime, you will want to address this discrepancy right away.

While employers are required to make requisite adjustments necessary to comply with state and federal wage laws, you can and should take steps to protect yourself and your employment rights. If you uncover any inconsistencies, discrepancies or violations of wage or hour laws, consult an attorney to discuss your legal options.

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