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Understanding Florida’s Minimum Wage and Overtime Laws
As of September 30, 2023, Florida’s minimum wage rate will increase to $12.00 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 in Florida
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 Laws in Florida
What should I expect after I file an unpaid wage dispute claim in Florida?
The most common type of unpaid wage disputes in Florida tend to involve the failure to pay employees the overtime wages they are due. To begin a claim, an employee will typically hire an employment law attorney who handles unpaid overtime claims on a contingent fee basis to represent them (and potentially all similar coworkers). Once a lawsuit is filed, the claimant(s) can expect to be asked to provide certain documents and/or respond to specific questions about their job and how they were paid. In overtime pay lawsuits, the majority of the work involves issues that the lawyers and the court will resolve. On average, it takes approximately 18-24 months for most overtime pay lawsuits to get resolved.
Does the state of Florida have mandatory overtime laws?
No, the state of Florida does not have mandatory overtime laws. Florida state wage law defers to federal law, which does not place any limits on the amount of overtime employers can require employees to work. This does not, however, allow employers to mandate overtime work without paying a premium rate for the overtime hours worked. Overtime hours must be paid at a rate that is at least 1.5 times a worker’s regular rate of pay.
When should I hire a Florida unpaid overtime attorney?
You should consider hiring a Florida unpaid overtime attorney if you have reason to believe that you have been denied full and proper overtime pay for the hours you work in excess of 40 per work week. While you should first try and clarify how your overtime pay is being calculated by looking at your payroll records (pay stubs, time sheets, etc.) and/or asking HR or payroll department to explain how your overtime pay is being determined. If this does not resolve your concerns about how your overtime pay is being handled, you should contact a lawyer who represents workers in overtime pay claims to review your situation and help you determine if your overtime pay rights have been violated, and if so, how much you may be owed in back pay and other damages.