Overtime and Minimum Wage Litigation
The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) and the Missouri Minimum Wage Law (“MMWL”) require covered employers to pay their employees overtime compensation for all hours worked in excess of forty in a workweek at a rate not less than one and one-half times their regular rate of pay. Cases challenging an employer’s failure or refusal to pay overtime often arise in the following contexts:
- Having employees work “off-the-clock” to avoid paying overtime
- Misclassifying employees as independent contractors or salaried to avoid paying overtime
- Improper overtime calculation methods
- Failure to pay compensable time (training time; travel time; break time where the employee is still forced to work)
- Private employers paying wages with goods or services instead of money
In addition, employees are generally entitled to a minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. If an employee is forced to work for less than $7.25 per hour in a workweek, there may be a claim for failure to pay a minimum wage.
Kuhlmann LLC represents employees in wage disputes, including collective actions and class actions. Under the FLSA, a successful employee can recover unpaid wages, along with liquidated damages which double the amount left unpaid.
If you are not being paid for all of the time you work and/or not being paid time and one-half for the hours you work in excess of a 40 hour work week, you may be entitled to back pay and other compensation.
Employment Discrimination Lawsuits
With very narrow exceptions, the law prohibits employers from using age as a factor in employment decisions. If you have been fired or “laid off,” or if your employer refused to promote you or provide equal pay in comparison with younger employees, you may have an age discrimination claim. The law protects older workers, in part because of the difficulties of transition in employment later in life. Under the favorable Missouri Human Rights Act, your age cannot even contribute to an employer’s actions in relation to your job.
Employees with disabilities have a right to reasonable accommodations to allow them to perform their jobs. As long as the accommodation does not create an “undue” hardship, employees with physical and mental disabilities are protected from unfair treatment based on disability. If you have a disability, if you have a record of having a disability, if you are perceived as having a disability, or if you have suffered unfair treatment for your association with a person with a disability, you have rights under state and federal laws.
Sex stereotypes can result in unequal treatment in employment opportunity. The law protects women (and men) from unfair treatment based on sex. Under the favorable Missouri Human Rights Act, your gender or pregnancy cannot contribute to an employer’s actions in relation to your job.
-Race, Color, and National Origin Discrimination
Employment discrimination based on race, color, or nation of origin is prohibited in America. If your employer has subjected you to unfair treatment (including unequal pay, failure to promote, improper discipline, suspension, or termination) where your race or color was a contributing factor, you may have a discrimination claim.
Employees have a right to practice religion without interference in the workplace. If you have suffered an adverse employment action based on religion, please contact Kuhlmann LLC.
- Workplace Harassment
Missouri employees are protected from harassment in the workplace. Protected factors include age, disability, ethnicity, race, religion, and sex. The most common form of harassment is sexual harassment. If an employee is suffering a hostile work environment based on any of the above factors, the employer has a legal duty to stop the harassment.
You have a legally protected right to oppose discrimination. If your employer retaliates against you for complaining about harassment, discrimination, or any other illegal conduct, or if you have assisted anyone else who opposed discrimination or harassment, please contact Kuhlmann LLC. If you have been fired, demoted, or otherwise treated unfairly because you refuse to tolerate inappropriate workplace conduct, you may have a claim for retaliation.
-Whistle Blower Lawsuits
You have a right to refuse to violate the law on your employer’s behalf. You have a right to report illegal activity at your place of employment. The law protects employees who “blow the whistle” on violations of law occurring in connection with the workplace. If your employer has retaliated against you on this basis, please contact Kuhlmann LLC.
Kuhlmann LLC regularly evaluates severance agreements, which are nearly always presented by the employer, and invariably involve the release of potentially valuable legal claims and rights. We can help you evaluate whether it makes sense in your situation to take a severance payout.
Breach of Contract, Bonuses, Non-Compete Agreements
Kuhlmann LLC has broad experience in breach of contract matters, including retention and other employment bonus litigation. In addition, we have successfully challenged non-compete agreements.
Family Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”)
Covered employers are required to give you unpaid time off to take care of your own serious health problems as well as those of your family members. Eligible employees have a right to up to 12 weeks of leave per year for:
- The employee’s serious health condition;
- Birth or adoption of a child; or
- Care for an immediate family member with a serious health condition
If your employer fired you, demoted you, or otherwise treated you unfairly for asking for this type of time off (or for taking it), you may have a claim for retaliation.