The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), requires employers to pay non-exempt employees a minimum of $7.25 per hour. If an employer fails to pay employees the minimum wage, they violate state and Federal law. Contact me if you have not been paid minimum wage; I represent employees against employers who do not pay their employees properly.
How much is minimum wage in Texas?
Though many states have set a higher minimum wage than the FLSA's $7.25 / hour minimum, Texas has not increased the minimum wage. An employer must pay a non-exempt employee overtime once she or he has worked more than 40 hours a week.
Who is an exempt employee?
An exempt employee is someone who is paid on a salary. Salaried workers are not entitled to overtime and are not paid on an hourly basis.Whether someone is exempt depends on the nature of the job. It is possible to pay individuals as salaried who should be paid hourly, and this can present a violation of the FLSA as well.
What is a violation?
Some typical examples of violations of minimum wage law include:
- Improper deductions;
- Making people work off the clock;
- Misclassification as exempt;
- Stealing tips / abusing tipped workers;
- Not paying at all or in part; and
- Issues related to "only commission" jobs
- Not paying overtime.
Wages for tipped workers
The law regarding tipped workers functions differently than non-tipped workers. In order to be considered a tipped worker the employee must customarily be tipped, meaning they receive more than $30 of their wages in tips under Federal law and $20 in tip-wages under Texas law.
An employer may credit an employee's earnings in tips against the minimum under the following conditions:
- The employer pays at least $2.13 an hour
- If the tips and the $2.13 do not equal minimum wage ($7.25/hr), the employer must make the difference to add up to the minimum wage
- If the employer is crediting the tips against the minimum wage, then the employer must inform the employee it is doing this beforehand.
Tip Pool Issues
Generally, a tipped employee will be allowed to keep all of his /her tips, unless there is a valid tip pool created for the workplace. Importantly, tip pools can only pool employees who regularly and customarily receive wages in tips. For an example, employer may not pool bartenders with dish washers. Such a pooling agreement would likely be invalid. The employer must also inform tipped employees of the tip pool.
Experienced wage theft? Contact me
If you think you have experienced wage theft, contact me a Texas minimum wage attorney in order to schedule a consultation and evaluate your case. There are timelines for filing pay claims. Failure to timely assert a wage claim against an employer may result in the inability to pursue the employer.