Construction workers build, repair, and connect our world. Despite the essential role construction workers play in our society, the employees in this industry are often underpaid for their labor.
If you believe your employer has subjected you to overtime wage violations that resulted in underpayment, you could be entitled to financial compensation. Contact a Lore Law Firm overtime wage violation attorney for a free and confidential review of your specific situation.
Hold a Construction Company Accountable for Overtime and Wage Violations
Working in construction typically means long hours and physically demanding job duties, and you deserve to be paid fairly for the time and services you provide. Unfortunately, many construction companies use shady tactics to avoid paying their workers what they are owed.
Previous investigations have recovered substantial compensation in back wages and damages for construction workers. Examples include:
- Rivian subcontractors must pay $315,000 in back wages and penalties to 59 Mexican laborers after the state brought a lawsuit.
- Eleven heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) contractors in Central Florida paid over $113,000 in compensation for back wages and liquidated damages after denying 169 workers their total wages.
- The owner of several concrete supply and construction companies in Bellport must pay workers $987,591 in overtime back wages and damages after the U.S. Department of Labor found that they plotted to withhold overtime pay from 99 employees.
- A Houston welding and fabrication company that was misclassifying employees as independent contractors, thus denying them their total wages and benefits, must now pay over $178,358 in back wages for 27 employees.
- The U.S. Department of Labor recovered $283,000 in wages and liquidated damages from a Salem landscaping contractor who denied 19 New Hampshire employees their overtime pay.
Construction companies will use many tactics to try to withhold funds and pay workers less than they are owed. An overtime wage violation attorney can be your guide in recovering your unpaid wages.
5 Most Common Overtime and Wage Violations Affecting Construction Workers
Some of the most common overtime and wage violations that affect people working in the construction industry include:
Work Completed Off the Clock
As a money-saving tactic, many construction companies will neglect to record the full amount of time worked by their employees. They may fail to compensate workers for downtime, rain delays, or time spent working before or after a shift as a means of shortchanging their workers.
Any time an employer does not pay their employees for all compensable hours worked, the workers have a right to bring a claim to recover their unpaid wages with an overtime wage violation lawyer.
Automatically Deducting Time for Meal Breaks
Sometimes companies will automatically deduct time for meal breaks, even though they require their employees to complete work tasks during these breaks. All construction workers are entitled to be paid fairly during this time, and if the employer denies overtime pay that is owed, they may be held accountable for up to double the amount of wages improperly withheld.
Unpaid Travel Time
Although construction companies do not have to pay their employees for the time it takes them to drive to work in the morning or home again at the end of the day, many employers do not think they need to pay their workers for travel required by the job. However, construction companies are legally obligated to pay their employees for time spent traveling between jobs and from shops to work sites and back or during mandatory group transport to a job site.
Paying Comp Time or Paid Time Off for Overtime Hours
Rather than pay construction workers in cash, many employers will try to circumvent overtime laws by compensating employees for the extra hours they work with “comp time” or paid time off (PTO). In the United States, it is illegal for any private employer to pay workers anything other than their wage at time-and-a-half for overtime work. If your construction company is not paying you actual money for your overtime hours, you may be able to file a claim to recover up to double your unpaid wages.
Misclassification as an Independent Contractor
Construction companies that misclassify their employees as independent contractors (1099 workers) can be held responsible for exploiting vulnerable workers by denying them the wages they are owed. If you have been misclassified as an independent contractor, you may be owed an award for missing wages and benefits.
Straight Time for Overtime
Paying the same hourly rate for all hours worked, including hours over 40 per week, is referred to as paying straight-time pay for overtime. This is a common, yet blatant, form of wage theft in the construction trades, and it is almost always illegal. When a construction worker’s hours exceed 40 in a single work week, they are owed at least time and one-half their regular rate for all additional hours under the overtime pay laws.
Day Rate Pay With No Overtime
As the name implies, day-rate employees are paid on a per-day basis rather than being paid an hourly or piece rate. Nevertheless, while day-rate employees are paid a flat rate for the entire day, the law still requires that they be paid overtime if they work more than 40 hours per week.
Overtime and Wage Violation Lawyers Representing Construction Workers
Shortchanging construction workers for their hard-earned wages is not only immoral, but it also violates the Fair Labor Standards Act. If you are a construction worker who has not been paid fairly by your employer, a Lore Law Firm overtime wage violation attorney may be able to help hold them accountable for their actions. Cases are handled on a contingent fee basis so there is no upfront cost, and no fee at all unless a recovery is obtained.