Many employees assume that their employer sets rules and they must follow them, or they can’t work there. Most workers don’t realize that employers must abide by a whole host of government regulations when hiring, employing, and firing employees. One such law is the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
This federal law requires employers to pay the federal minimum wage if it exceeds the state one. It also requires employers to pay overtime and adhere to other compensation requirements depending on the situation.
Some employers ignore their obligations when compensating their employees. This may result in you filing a wage and hour claim — and your employer may unlawfully retaliate against you in response.
What constitutes wage and hour retaliation?
Employers often misclassify employees to avoid having to take necessary deductions, provide benefits like workers’ compensation or health insurance or so they don’t have to pay overtime. Employers may also inform their workers that they don’t qualify for compensated breaks when they really do. The above-referenced situations may lead an employee to file an hour and wage claim.
An employer’s failure to abide by existing laws in compensating employees can expose them to legal liability and affect their bottom line. Employers may retaliate against their employees because of this.
Wage and hour retaliation can take on many forms, including:
- A reduction in your work hours
- Your employer may demote you
- An unfavorable work review
- Unwarranted disciplinary action
- The implementation of an undesirable work schedule.
Any instance in which an employer takes the actions described above without having a solid reason for doing so may constitute retaliation.
What can you do if you’re retaliated against after a wage and hour claim?
Employer retaliation is unlawful. Employees can take legal action against their employers who engage in such illegal activities. If you’ve been mistreated by an employer in retaliation for a wage and hour claim, you may be able to recover lost wages in addition to other damages.