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Wage and Hour Archives

Can you get paid for not working?

As an employee in Missouri, you rightly expect to receive a fair wage from your employer for the time you spend performing your job duties. However, there are circumstances in which your employer should compensate you for your time even when you are not working. According to FindLaw, when your time not working is nevertheless spent for the employer's benefit and/or under the employer's control, then you have a right to compensation for that time. 

Are there exceptions to at-will employment?

At-will employment refers to an employer’s right to terminate a worker for any reason, provided the reason is not deemed discriminatory. Most states offer employment at-will, which is intended to protect both employers as well as employees (as workers are free to quit a job without fear of consequences). There are some exceptions to the at-will rule however, as explained by TheBalance.com.

Frequently asked questions about nursing breaks

If you’re a new mother in Kansas City who’s on her way back to work, you may have questions about nursing breaks. While it’s true that your employer is legally obligated to provide such breaks, knowing the details of the law is crucial to make sure your rights aren’t being violated. The United States Department of Labor offers the following answers to frequently asked questions about nursing mothers and breaks.

Frequently asked questions about the Family and Medical Leave Act

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows workers to take time off for medical issues without risking their jobs or health insurance benefits. Understanding the details of this act is crucial to ensure employees know their rights and can recognize when they’ve been violated. The United States Department of Labor answers the following questions, which can help you access the necessary leave if you or a loved one falls ill.

When do I get overtime pay?

As a Missouri worker, your overtime pay is important to you, and you likely want to earn as much of it as possible. But you may be unclear as to when overtime kicks in and how much it amounts to. As FindLaw explains, under Title 18 of the Missouri Revised Statutes, your employer must pay you overtime any time you work more than 40 hours in a given week, not necessarily any time you work more than eight hours in a given day.

Are you guaranteed work breaks in Missouri?

State laws dictate when employees get breaks and how long those breaks can be. Under these laws, employers need to provide a minimum amount of rest time, potentially including short paid breaks or paid lunch hours. In Missouri, however, that isn't necessarily the case for workers like you.

What about coffee breaks?

No matter what sort of job you perform in Kansas City, it is difficult for anyone to do the same thing for eight hours straight while maintaining task-centered focus throughout. Even if your work shift is broken up by a lunch break, you still might find it hard to remain fully engaged the entire time. Plus, recent years have seen companies emphasize corporate wellness initiatives that encourage employees to live healthier lives (so in turn, they miss less work due to illness or injury). Part of these programs is often encouraging short breaks throughout the day to take a quick walk or to grab a drink or a snack. 

Is your employer violating the Equal Pay Act?

During a conversation with a co-worker of the opposite sex, you discover that he or she is paid significantly more than you to perform the same job function in Kansas City. Further discussions reveal that nearly all of the employees who share his or her gender are in the same situation. Is your lower pay scale simply due to your sex? Are there not laws prohibiting this, and if so, could your company be in violation of them? 

Laws regarding tipped employees

Employees in Missouri who receive tips as part of their compensation may think they are entitled to the same hourly wage that other employees are. However, the laws regarding tipped employees are different, and it is a good idea for workers to understand how and what they are getting paid so there is no confusion when they look at their paycheck.

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