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Does my employer have to pay overtime if I work over 40 hours week?

Clark, NJ |

After Hurricane Sandy, my boss has required that I work more than 40 hours a week, including weekends, etc. However he refuses to pay any overtime even if I work 60 hours a week. We get regular pay for the overtime hours. Is this legal?
Before the storm overtime work was optional and the boss never paid overtime rate. After the storm we are required to work overtime. otherwise we are threatened with termination. Is this legal?

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Attorney answers 3


The first question you must answer is what is the type of work you perform? Certain positions are exempt from OT.

Herbert Tan, Esq.

The National Newark Building
744 Broad Street, 16th Fl.
Newark, New Jersey 07102
(973) 735-2681 (W)
(973) 735-2682 (F)

Manhattan Office
305 Broadway, 14th Floor
New York, New York 10007
(888) TAN-LAWS

Member of National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA)


According to the NJ Department of Labor, "overtime is paid at the rate of time and one half after forty hours of actual work in a seven-day workweek, with the exception of certain salaried employees who meet the definition of an executive, administrative or professional." If you are an hourly or non-exempt employee, then you have to be paid overtime for the 40 extra hours that you work a week. No exceptions.

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This is probably not legal and you are probably entitled to overtime. You should be paid time and a half. It sounds like you are not being paid on a salary basis which probably means the most common overtime exemptions do not apply to you. You should check into whether other overtime exemptions may apply to your situation. The easiest way to address this issue is to make a complaint to the state DOL, Wage and Hour Division.

This information is provided for informational purposes only. This is not legal advice and this response does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you wish to obtain legal advice, you should retain and consult with a local attorney.