The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) defines a “day rate” (sometimes referred to as a “job rate”) as when an employee is paid a flat sum for a day’s work, or for doing a particular job, without regard to the number of hours worked in the day or at the job. Day rate workers are paid a fixed flat amount for each day worked, no matter how many hours they put in during each work day. Although it is legal for employers to pay day rate workers this way, the FLSA requires employers to pay day rate workers overtime for all hours worked over 40 in a work week. Some state laws also regulate the number of hours an employee can work within a 24-hour period before requiring overtime payments.
To calculate overtime for day rate workers, the FLSA generally requires that the worker’s regular rate be determined by totaling all pay in a workweek and dividing by total hours actually worked. The worker is then entitled to extra half-time pay at this rate for all hours worked in excess of 40.
This is an example of how overtime is calculated for a day rate worker:
- Day Rate = $200 per day
- Work days in the work week = 5 days
- Hours per day = 12
- Total weekly pay = $1,000
- Total hours worked = 60
- Regular rate calculation = $200 x 5 days = $1,000 ÷ 60 = $16.67
- Overtime pay calculation = $16.67 x .50 x 20 overtime hours =$167.00
- Total pay for the week = $1,000 day rate + $167.00 = $1,167.00
Employers in many industries use day or job rates to pay their employees but do not pay overtime. Such workers are deprived of thousands of dollars a year in hard-earned overtime pay. This practice is common in industries such as oil and gas, refinery, healthcare, and field workers. Day rate worker jobs often include operators, inspectors, technicians, tool pushers, coordinators, field engineers, drivers, home healthcare workers, live-in aids, physician assistants, safety inspectors, pumpers, landmen, mud engineers, and pipeline inspectors.
Some day rate workers may have signed contracts or agreements stating that overtime is not paid. However, the FLSA provides that overtime cannot be waived by agreement between a worker and employer. Likewise, company policies that state overtime work is not permitted, or must be authorized in advance, are generally not enforceable.
Contact Our Baton Rouge, Louisiana Overtime Attorneys
If you are paid a day or job rate and you work more than 40 hours in a week, you may be eligible to receive overtime under the FLSA and state laws. There are time deadlines for filing unpaid overtime lawsuits so it is important that you contact an unpaid overtime attorney immediately. You may lose some or all of your rights to recover your unpaid overtime if you delay filing a claim.
For a free confidential consultation to determine if you are eligible to file a day rate wage claim, contact the unpaid overtime attorneys at Bohrer Brady, LLC. We have the knowledge, resources, experience, and expertise to represent you in your unpaid overtime claim. There are no legal fees or costs unless you receive a settlement.