How do pay periods affect overtime pay?

Pay periods do not affect the calculation of overtime. Overtime is calculated based on a workweek. A workweek is a 7 day period that your employer establishes and it must remain consistent. The workweek can start on any day of the week. For example, your employer may establish that the workweek runs from Monday through Sunday or from Wednesday to Tuesday.

If the pay period ends during a workweek, this does NOT affect the calculation of overtime. You continue to count your work hours through the end of the workweek to determine how much overtime you may be due.

Example: Assume your employer’s workweek runs from Monday to Sunday. You work 6 days in a row from Tuesday through Sunday, 8 hours per day, for a total of 48 hours. The pay period ends on Friday.

Your pay check for the pay period that ends Friday will include the 32 hours you worked from Tuesday through Friday.  However, to calculate the overtime you worked for the week, you would continue to count all your hours worked through Sunday.  The check for the next pay period would include the remaining 16 hours you worked that workweek (Saturday & Sunday) PLUS overtime pay for 8 hours because you worked a total of 48 hours for the workweek.

Your employer may change when their workweek starts but the change cannot be made to avoid paying overtime.

I work more than 80 hours in a pay period but I still don’t get overtime pay.

Learn more about the labor laws concerning this matter here.