Wage & Hour Lawyers

What is a volunteer under Texas employment law?

Most people understand volunteering means giving away free labor, often to a charity or other non-profit organization. However, sometimes Texas for-profit businesses seek “volunteers” as a way of receiving unpaid labor or an employer requires its employees to volunteer time for a charitable or civic cause. What about these situations? The Department of Labor has …

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Papa Johns franchise hit with $500k recovery and criminal prosecution in overtime violations

It’s not every day a state criminally prosecutes an employer for wage theft. Last month a Papa Johns franchise operator suffered a judgment of $500,000 in damages plus an indictment in a criminal prosecution for wage theft. The case may not have an effect here in Texas but the facts are worth discussing. They could …

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Second Circuit undercuts Department of Labor unpaid internship test

This month the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (which oversees appeals in New York, Vermont and Connecticut) in Glatt v. Fox Searchlight Pictures, Inc. rejected the nearly forty year old internship test applied by the Department of Labor in favor of a more business friendly test called the primary beneficiary test. This …

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Are Texas Uber drivers employees or contractors?

So far Uber hasn’t had a great start in Texas (according to reviews). Uber has seen great success in other areas. It is widespread in the major cities in California despite an existing availability of taxi drivers. Major cities around the country are tackling the issues with Uber and other ride-sharing services in different ways. …

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Does my employer have to give me breaks and lunches under Texas labor laws?

Neither federal or Texas labor laws requires employers to give employees rest or meal breaks for most employees; but there are certain exceptions under the law. There are a number of misconceptions floating around. Insisting your employer owes you a break without legal entitlement could put your job at risk. Common incorrect beliefs include the …

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Can my employer make me waive FMLA protection?

No, an employer cannot require you to sign a waiver of protection under FMLA for future leave or protection from discrimination on the basis of prior use of FMLA. Department of Labor regulations on FMLA prohibit employers from requiring employees to waive FMLA rights and hold any waiver invalid. Like minimum wage and overtime protections, employers …

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Fifth Circuit Deals Blow to Overtime Pay with MCA Exemption

This month the federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, which hears appeals from Texas, delivered a surprising appellate decision on overtime pay for workers in long haul freight transport in Allen v. Coil Tubing Services, LLC. In this case, the appellate court held that workers could be identified by class in determining whether an exemption …

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When can employers deduct credit card fees from tips in Texas?

Today’s society is moving increasingly towards becoming a paperless society. That includes the way we pay for goods and services. It is rare that people pay in cash, especially with the reward systems attached to credit cards. The convenience of throwing down plastic comes with a price, at least to the business owners. Credit card …

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Overtime pay with personal leave in Texas

Overtime rules under the Fair Labor Standards Act and Texas Payday Law result in  improper wage calculations in employment law. Some employers engage in illegal acts to avoid paying overtime. Many fail to fully understand when they must pay overtime and how the calculation of overtime pay must occur. (For a primer on overtime pay, …

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Texas Payday Law and final paycheck: Dallas overtime lawyer

I often receive questions regarding Texas employees and when they should receive their final paycheck from their employer. In Texas, the law governing the timing of your final paycheck is the Texas Payday Law, which is similar to the federal Fair Labor Standards Act but includes some additional, state-specific rules for employee wages. Under the …

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Sandifer v. U.S. Steel Corp. — FLSA Section 203(o)

This month the Supreme Court of the United States will hear oral arguments on Sandifer v. U.S. Steel Corp., coming out of the Seventh Circuit, dealing with the “changing clothes” language under Section 3(o) of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Sandifer deals with a group of steelworking employees who are required to put on protective …

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Fluctuating Work Week FLSA calculations in Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas

The fluctuating work week is perhaps the least understood subject in wage law under the Fair Labor Standards Act. It is so misunderstood that even federal judges in Texas don’t understand it. The Fifth Circuit rejected the improper application of the fluctuating work week by the Northern District of Texas in Dallas in Black v. …

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