Unpaid Overtime

An employer generally must pay one and one-half times a worker's regular rate of pay for all the hours worked over 40 in a workweek.

Even salaried, commissioned, and other non-hourly workers may be owed overtime.

If you work more than 40 hours in a workweek and want to know if you are getting paid properly, consult with the unpaid overtime attorneys at The Buenker Law Firm in Houston, TX, by contacting us online or calling us at (713) 868-3388.

A woman working overtime at her office.
By law, non-exempt employees are entitled to overtime pay.

Am I Entitled to Overtime?

If you are a non-exempt employee, you are entitled to overtime pay if you work more than 40 hours in a workweek. The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires that all employers pay non-exempt employees who have worked over 40 hours in a workweek an hourly wage of one and a half times their regular rate of pay for those hours worked over 40.

Types of Overtime Violations

Overtime violations take many forms. For example, some employers pay their employees "straight time" for all the hours their employees work. Some employers misclassify non-exempt employees as exempt. Some employers simply do not pay for all the hours their employees work. 

If you are a non-exempt employee, you are entitled to overtime pay if you work more than 40 hours in a workweek. 


Workers who are properly classified as exempt or as independent contractors are excluded from overtime compensation under the FLSA. However, many employers intentionally misclassify employees as either exempt employees or independent contractors to avoid paying overtime wages and other benefits. Employees who are misclassified have a right to make a claim for overtime wages that they should have been paid for the hours they worked over 40 in each workweek. Employee classification is a complicated area of the law, but the attorneys at The Buenker Law Firm can help you understand.

"Off-the-Clock" Work

Sometimes employers do not pay for all the hours their employees work. For example, employers may:

  • Require employees to work before clocking in, after clocking out, or during an unpaid lunch break;
  • Require employees to attend company meetings without compensation, including safety meetings before work and before clocking in;
  • Automatically deduct time daily from workers’ pay for a lunch break, whether or not the employees actually take the break;
  • Not pay employees for compensable on-call time;
  • Not pay employees for time spent driving between appointments, meetings or locations during the workday;
  • Expect employees to complete work at home without compensation; or
  • Do not pay for training or other mandatory activities.

All hours spent for the benefit of the employer must be paid for as work time. An employer cannot require an employee to work without pay. 

Crucial Information for Your Case

Before meeting with one of our lawyers, please gather any and all information and documents you have from your employment, including: 

  • Time records
  • Pay stubs
  • Work schedules
  • Employee handbooks
  • Offer letters
  • Records of complaints made
  • Emails with your employer regarding time worked
  • Emails with co-workers regarding time worked
  • Contact information for coworkers and other witnesses
  • Copies of relevant audio and video recordings

These can be critical to winning your case. Please bring these to your consultation.

Schedule a Consultation

If your employer is not paying you properly, schedule your consultation today by contacting us online or calling us at (713) 868-3388. 

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The Buenker Law Firm Attorneys at Law

Attorneys Josef F. Buenker and Thomas H. Padgett, Jr. fight hard to protect workers from wage theft and illegal wage and hour practices. With decades of experience in recovering workers’ stolen wages, we have the ability to represent workers facing wage & hour issues like:

If you believe you have been taken advantage of by your employer, please contact our Houston law firm to request a free consultation. You can reach us online or by calling (713) 868-3388.

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