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Who Is Entitled to Overtime Pay? 

Duwel Law Dec. 29, 2022

Overtime Pay Concept Written on A PaperBoth federal and state laws require employers to pay overtime when employees work more than 40 hours in a workweek. However, the regulations surrounding overtime pay can be confusing for both employers and employees, which is why it can be difficult to know who is entitled to overtime pay.  

If you are an employer or employee who wants to learn more about overtime pay in Ohio, our employment law attorneys at Duwel Law are here to help. We assist both employers and employees in Dayton, Ohio, and surrounding areas, including Greene, Miami, Montgomery, Warren, and Darke counties. Seek legal counsel if you believe you were not properly paid for working overtime or if your employees are trying to take advantage of the system.  

Who Is Entitled to Overtime Pay?  

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) regulates federal provisions regarding overtime pay. Under federal law, employees are entitled to overtime pay if they work more than 40 hours in a workweek unless they are exempt (we will explain the difference between exempt vs. non-exempt employees later).  

When an employee is entitled to overtime pay, they should be paid for any hours worked over 40 in a workweek at a rate of “time and a half,” according to the U.S. Department of Labor. The FLSA defines a workweek as seven consecutive work days. For example, if you earn Ohio’s regular minimum wage of $10.10 per hour (effective Jan. 1, 2023), the overtime minimum wage should be $15.15 per hour.  

Unlike other states, Ohio does not limit the number of hours an employee can be paid overtime in a single workday.  

Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Employees  

Now that you know how overtime pay works, you need to understand the difference between exempt and non-exempt employees. Not all employees are entitled to overtime pay under federal and state law in Ohio. Both federal and state laws have categories of “exempt” employees who are not entitled to overtime pay.  

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the list of exemptions includes the following positions: 

  • Casual babysitters 

  • Farmworkers 

  • Employees of certain small newspapers 

  • Seamen on foreign vessels 

  • Employees of certain seasonal recreational/amusement establishments 

  • Newspaper deliverers 

  • News editors 

  • Taxi drivers 

  • Railroad and air carrier employees 

  • Announcers 

This is not the complete list of employees who are not entitled to overtime pay under federal law. Both federal and Ohio state laws also create exemptions for certain categories of employees regardless of their industry. These include administrative employees, executives, commissioner salespersons, and highly-compensated employees. 

However, classifying yourself as an exempt or non-exempt employee may require knowledge of specific details and nuances of the law. Consider speaking with a knowledgeable employment law attorney to discuss whether you (as an employee) or your employees are entitled to overtime pay.  

Overtime Policies  

Most employers create overtime policies that explain which employees are entitled to overtime pay and which aren’t. Overtime policies come in the form of documents that outline the company’s procedures and guidelines for overtime pay. In fact, depending on the type of business, employers may be required by law to have overtime policies in place.  

Overtime policies may contain the following provisions: 

  1. Approval of overtime. Employees who need to work overtime may be required to notify their supervisors to obtain approval before working overtime. The use of overtime may be approved or denied by the company’s management.  

  1. Unauthorized overtime. Employees who do not seek approval for overtime prior to working beyond their normal working hours can face disciplinary action. In some cases, unauthorized overtime may lead to termination of employment.  

  1. Mandatory overtime. Under certain circumstances (e.g., during busy periods), employers may require their employees to work overtime. As long as reasonable notice has been given to an employee, refusal to work overtime can result in disciplinary action against the employee.  

If you are an employee, you may need the assistance of a skilled attorney to help you review your employer’s overtime policies and explain your rights. If you are an employer, seeking legal counsel may be necessary to create a written policy.  

Turn to Duwel Law For Help  

If you believe your employer has not paid you overtime to which you are entitled, contact an employment law attorney for help. Our attorneys at Duwel Law represent both sides of the dispute related to overtime pay. Schedule a consultation with our employment law attorneys to understand your rights regarding overtime pay under federal and state laws.