Ohio Wage and Hour Laws
The ADP Research Institute found that more than 70% of employers in Ohio are not in compliance with the state’s wage and hour laws. Some employers rely on the blind trust of their employees to get away with paying unfair wages. They do this only to increase their bottom line. Make sure you understand the wage and labor laws in Ohio and know your rights as an employee. If something seems wrong, reach out to an experienced wage and hour attorney for help.
The minimum wage for most employees in Ohio is $8.15 per hour. This is $0.90 an hour more than the federal minimum wage of $7.25. Tipped employees like restaurant servers and bartenders are an exception to the rule. The federal minimum wage for tipped employees is only $2.13. But Ohio requires employers pay tipped employees at least $4.08 per hour worked. However, employers cannot pay server wages to employees that do not earn enough in tips to make minimum wage. Federal law states if an employee earns less than $7.25 an hour (the federal minimum wage) in tips and wages, the employer must make up the difference.
The law entitles commissioned employees to minimum wage (and often overtime pay) as well. However, there are exceptions in which the standard minimum wage is not required. The state and federally mandated minimums do not apply to children under the age of 16. They also preclude those with mental or physical disabilities, volunteer workers, or those who work at someone’s home on a “casual basis,” like babysitters.
Overtime pay is generally “time and a half.” This means employers compensate any time worked over 40 hours at a rate of 1.5 times the normal hourly wage. Employers have exploited the system for years by designating employees as salaried. In other words, they are not paid by the hour. However, many salaried employees still qualify for overtime pay.
To be exempt from overtime pay, you must earn at least $455 a week AND your company must classify you as one of the following employees:
- outside sales
- computer sales
If you do not meet both of these qualifications, your employer should pay overtime. This is true even as a salaried worker.
Other Wage & Hour Issues Protected by Law
State and federal laws, such as the Ohio Minimum Fair Wage Standards Act and the U.S. Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), provide other protections for workers as well. They include:
- regulations against working off the clock
- protection from unfair deductions
- protection from unlawful designation as an independent contractor
There are caveats to almost every employment-related law. But the exceptions may not be as encompassing as your employer may want you to believe. If you have questions about your status as an independent contractor, commissioned, tipped, or salaried employee, ask a trusted employment law attorney.
Need Legal Help?
If your employer is unlawfully underpaying you for the work you have performed, an experienced wage and hour lawyer can help you recover the wages owed. Contact Tittle & Perlmuter today to schedule a free consultation.