Florida Overtime and Labor Laws
As of January 1, 2021, Florida’s minimum wage rate will increase to $8.65 per hour.
On November 3, 2020, Amendment 2 was passed which will increase Florida’s minimum wage to $15/hour over a period of years. After the increase to $8.65 on January 1, 2021, the minimum wage will increase to $10/hour as of 9/30/2021 and will increase $1 per year until the rate reaches $15/hour on 9/30/2026. Thereafter, minimum wage will be adjusted based on the Consumer Price Index.
Florida Minimum Wage Rates by Year
- Sep 30, 2026: $15.00 per hour
- Sep 30, 2025: $14.00 per hour
- Sep 30, 2024: $13.00 per hour
- Sep 30, 2023: $12.00 per hour
- Sep 30, 2022: $11.00 per hour
- Sep 30, 2021: $10.00 per hour
- Jan 1, 2021: $8.65 per hour
- 2020: $8.56 per hour
- 2019: $8.46 per hour
- 2018: $8.25 per hour
- 2017: $8.10 per hour
- 2016: $8.05 per hour
Overtime Laws in Florida
Florida overtime laws essentially defer to federal law. Florida follows the Federal labor laws and does not have any state specific exemptions in its Florida overtime rules, meaning all non-exempt employees must be paid overtime pay of time and a half for any hours worked over 40 during a workweek. Federal law exemptions apply in Florida overtime rules– below are the most common exemptions:
There are no Florida overtime laws that require additional pay for work completed on weekends or holidays. Vacation, holiday or other pay for time not worked is not required by Florida employers and is at the discretion of each individual employer. The state of Florida does not have overtime laws in place that differ from Federal labor laws. If you feel that your rights have been violated, you should contact an overtime lawyer.
Independent Contractors under Florida Law
Certain individuals fall outside the definition of an “employee” under Florida’s labor laws, meaning that they are not entitled to a minimum wage or overtime pay. While employers will commonly claim that workers are independent contractors (and not entitled to overtime pay), to be properly classified as such, a worker must be primarily free from control and direction in the performance of duties and customarily engaged in an independent trade, occupation, profession or business. A number of factors must be considered in determining if a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. An agreement or label is not enough to change an employee to contractor.
Other Wage & Hour Issues
Breaks are also not required to be given to employees. However, if an employer gives breaks to their employees, they must follow the Federal requirements. These requirements state that when breaks of 20 minutes or less are given, they must be paid. Meal breaks of 30 minutes or more where the employee is relieved of all duties can be unpaid.
Florida law does not mandate specific pay periods nor does the Federal law.
While Florida does not specially address deductions, according to the FLSA, deductions for items such as trade tools, damaged goods, uniforms, and shortages cannot bring an employee’s hourly rate below the minimum wage.
Private actions to enforce the state of Florida’s overtime pay laws and minimum wage laws are usually brought to light by employment law firms such as The Lore Law Firm. The statute of limitations in Florida is the same as Federal law – claims can be made within 2 years, or 3 years if the violation is willful. If you think you may be deprived of your Florida overtime pay rights, be sure to contact us for a free and confidential review of your specific situation and whether or not Florida overtime rules have been violated.
Florida follows the Federal law. Overtime pay of time and a half is required for all non-exempt employees for hours worked over 40 during a workweek.
Florida does not have any state specific exemptions to the overtime pay requirements. Federal law exemptions apply, the most common of which include:
- Computer Employee
Holidays / Vacation
Florida does not have a state law requiring additional pay for work done on holidays or weekends. Employers are also not required to offer vacation, holiday or other pay for time not worked. These policies are at the discretion of the employer.
Meal Breaks / Rest Periods
Florida does not require an employer to provide breaks to employees. However if breaks are given, employers must follow the Federal requirements which state that when breaks of 20 minutes or less are given, they must be paid. Meal breaks of 30 minutes or more can be unpaid as long as the employee is relieved of all duties.
Reporting Time Pay
Neither Florida nor the Federal law requires payment if an employee reports to work expecting to work for a certain number of hours but does not get to work their full schedule.
Florida law does not mandate specific pay periods nor does the Federal law.
Florida law does not specifically address the types of deductions which can be taken; however pursuant to the FLSA, deductions for items such as uniforms, shortages, damaged goods, or trade tools cannot reduce the employee’s hourly wage below the minimum rate.
Statute of Limitations
For overtime claims, the statute of limitations is the same as under Federal Law – claims can be made for the prior 2 years (3 years if the violation is willful).
State Law Remedies / Penalties
The same Federal law remedies for overtime violations are available in Florida. Employees can recover all unpaid overtime for two or sometimes three years prior to the filing of a lawsuit. In almost all cases, they are additionally entitled to an award of “liquidated damages” equal to the amount of the unpaid overtime. This means that a successful employee can recover two times the amount of unpaid overtime. A successful plaintiff can also be awarded attorney’s fees and expenses.
An employer may not retaliate against an employee for exercising his or her right to receive the minimum wage or overtime pay. Rights protected by the State Constitution include the right to:
- File a complaint about an employer’s alleged noncompliance with lawful minimum wage requirements.
- Inform any person about an employer’s alleged noncompliance with lawful minimum wage requirements.
- Inform any person of his or her potential rights under Section 24, Article X of the State Constitution and to assist him or her in asserting such rights.
An employee who has not received the lawful minimum wage after notifying his or her employer and giving the employer 15 days to resolve any claims for unpaid wages may bring a civil action in a court of law against an employer to recover back wages plus damages and attorney’s fees.
Employers may be subject to a $1,000 per violation fine for willful violations.
Employees may also be able to bring a wage claim against an employer based on written or oral employment contracts.
Contact us for a free and confidential review of your situation.
Frequently Asked Questions About Overtime and Labor Laws in Florida
How long does an unpaid overtime lawsuit in Florida take?
While the amount of time it takes to settle an unpaid overtime lawsuit varies based on a number of factors, in general, most cases resolve in 12-18 months from the time a lawsuit is filed.
What is considered overtime in the state of Florida?
In Florida, overtime is considered to be all hours worked in excess of 40 hours in one workweek. Non-exempt employees are entitled to time and a-half for all hours worked over 40 per workweek.
If I work weekends or holidays in Florida will I receive overtime pay?
Not necessarily. Overtime pay is based on the number of hours worked during a workweek, not on which days are worked. Unless the hours actually worked on weekends or holidays puts a worker over 40 for the week, merely working on those days does not trigger overtime pay.
What makes a worker an employee or an independent contractor in Florida?
Merely labeling a worker an independent contractor or having them sign an agreement does not necessarily make them an independent contractor. Multiple factors must be considered to determine if a worker is an employee or an independent contractor, but the crux of the analysis is the degree of control exerted over the worker and the economic realities of the situation. This determination must be made on a case-by-case basis.
If I take a meal break at work, am I paid for that time by my employer?
Whether a break must be paid or unpaid depends on the length of the break. In general, if a break is short (5-20 minutes) it must be counted as time worked and paid for. Meal breaks that typically last 30 minutes or more are not required to be counted as time worked so long as the employee is actually relieved of all duties during the break. If an employee is required to continue to perform work tasks while on a meal break, that time should be paid.