Unpaid Wages and Overtime

In Illinois, all non-exempt hourly employees must earn at least the minimum wage, and must be paid time and a half (“overtime”) for all hours in excess of forty per work week.  Minimum wage and overtime are governed by a number of state and federal statutes, including the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act (“IWPCA”), Illinois Minimum Wage Law (“IMWL”), and Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”).

The FLSA contains provisions setting the federal minimum wage.  Effective July 24, 2009, the federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour.  The IMWL contains provisions setting the state minimum wage for Illinois, currently at $8.00 per hour.  If both the FLSA and the IMWL apply to an employee, the employee is entitled to earn the higher of the minimum wages set forth in the statutes.

The FLSA and IMWL each contain overtime provisions which mandate that non-exempt hourly employees must be paid time and a half for all hours worked in excess of forty hours in one work week.  An employee must be compensated for all time worked.  However, certain workers, particularly salaried employees, may be exempt from these overtime provisions.

The IWPCA mandates that employers in Illinois must pay each employee for all time that the employee worked, within two weeks of the end of the period in which the wages were earned.  The IWPCA further regulates final compensation upon the end of employment, and makes it unlawful for any employer to deduct wages from an employee’s paycheck without the written consent of the employee

Any non-exempt employee that has not been paid the appropriate wage for their time at work, or has not been paid for their overtime can pursue recovery of those amounts, attorney’s fees, and statutory penalties including liquidated damages.  Should you feel that you have not been paid the appropriate wages for the hours that you have worked, or should you feel that you have not received all your compensation in a timely manner, please contact Jensen Law Office, LLC to fully discuss your rights and your status under the above acts.


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