Question: I have employees who need the money and want to work overtime, but I cannot afford to pay them overtime. A group of them have approached me and said that they will agree in writing to be paid straight time and not take 1.5 times their regular hourly rate for hours over 40, they just need the extra hours and money. I want to help them out, can I do this?
Answer: Unfortunately, no. An employer and its employees are not allowed to make special contracts that defeat the Fair Labor Standards Act. While federal law requires employees be paid time and one half for all hours worked over 40 in that weekly pay period, some state laws require overtime to be paid after 8 hours in a day. Please check your specific state law to ensure compliance.
Dave Wilson has spent over two decades litigating wage and hour, employment, real estate, maritime, and general commercial disputes in the state and federal courts of Massachusetts and New Hampshire. Dave spends a significant amount of his time acting as a business partner with his clients, counseling and training them in all areas of employment relations law. Please visit the Hirsch Roberts Weinstein LLP website for more information.