When you own a company, there are federal, state, and local laws you must follow in order to stay in business. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), U.S. employees have the right to receive a minimum hourly wage, in addition to “time-and-a-half” overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours within a seven-day period. It also prohibits the employment of minors in “oppressive child labor” conditions. If business owners do not adhere to these rules and regulations, then workers may file lawsuits against their employers if they can show that the company is in violation. However, the company can defend against such charges as long as they can prove they did not violate any laws. An experienced employment attorney can help employers with providing this “burden of proof” in Illinois.
There are several ways that a company can be in violation of FLSA rules, such as not paying its workers at least minimum wage or classifying them as non-exempt or contractors when they should be exempt or salaried. In other cases, upper management may use harassment tactics or discriminatory language to intimidate employees into doing certain tasks. The main areas in which an employer can be sued include:
Any other labor law issue
Once an employee brings a lawsuit against his or her company, the employer will need to prove that they were not in violation of the FLSA because an exemption applies to them. In other words, there is an exception that fits the situation.
In terms of demonstrating compliance, if the employer’s records show inconsistencies with regard to hours worked and wages paid, the Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) can question the accuracy or assume the employer did not pay the appropriate amounts. Also, if the employer fails to provide adequate records, the employee’s records will be considered accurate.
It is important to note that Illinois may use rounding in their record-keeping of hours if they meet three requirements:
The rounding increments do not exceed 15 minutes.
The protocol or policy is posted and understood by employees.
The employee is accurately paid for the time they worked.
As a business owner, it is imperative that you understand the laws that apply to you to operate your company legally. At The Miller Law Firm, P.C., our reputable Illinois employer defense attorneys provide high-quality legal guidance to small and midsize businesses. We will work with you to find solutions to labor law issues concerning your employees, regardless if they are classified as exempt and non-exempt. Call us today at 847-995-1205 to schedule a free consultation.