At the FairLaw Firm, my office routinely handles cases for employees who were not properly paid the minimum wages they earned. My office is familiar with the many ways in which employers violate the law by following the strict regulations that apply as well as the exemptions that may apply. My office also is familiar with the reasons why an employee may not be entitled to receive minimum wages.
Most employees are entitled to receive at least a minimum wage for each hour worked. Certain exceptions apply that would prevent an employer from having to pay an employee or all of its employees minimum wages.
It is tough enough to try and survive by just earning a minimum wage. But trying to live when you get paid less than minimum wage is even more difficult. Most minimum wage jobs are demanding and thankless. When an employer does not properly pay its workers at least a minimum wage for the time worked, the FairLaw Firm can help.
The current federal minimum wage is set at $7.25 per hour for each hour worked. The Florida minimum wage has exceeded the federal minimum wage since June 1, 2011. The 2012 minimum wage was set at $7.79 per hour. The 2013 Florida minimum wage was set at $7.79 per hour. The 2014 Florida minimum wage was set at $7.93 per hour. The Florida minimum wage was set at $8.05 per hour from January 1, 2015 to December 31, 2016. The The Florida minimum wage was set at $8.10 per hour for all of calendar year 2017. The Florida minimum wage rose to $8.25 per hour for 2018. The Florida minimum wage rose to $8.46 per hour for 2019. The current Florida minimum wage for 2019 is $8.56 per hour.
Some minimum wage violations can be obvious - like when an employer pays less than the current minimum wage for each hour worked. Another obvious violation occurs when an employer pays a salary that, when spread over (divided by) the number of hours worked, does equal at least the minimum wage for each hour worked. Other times, minimum wage violations are not as obvious. These minimum wage violations can occur when an employer requires its workers to spend money (known as a "kickback") that reduces the employee's wages to below the minimum wage for such things as gas, tolls, mileage, or uniforms. Employers also violate the law by misclassifying an employee as an independent contractor when she/he is really an employee.
Servers, bartenders, and other tipped employees who rely on tips to supplement their income can be paid less than the full minimum wage under certain circumstances. For a more in-depth discussion of how the minimum wage laws affect tipped employees, please take a look at my page on Tipped Employees.
Minimum wage violations can result in damages that range from minimal to very substantial. An employee’s damages are based on the length of time worked for an employer in the last two years (which can be extended to three or even five years), the hours worked each week, and the difference between the amount received as wages and the minimum wage. Plus, an employee is entitled to recover all attorneys’ fees and costs incurred upon winning the case. Unless an employer can prove that it had a good reason for not paying overtime wages, it also will be responsible for paying a penalty amount equal to the unpaid wages (double damages).
The FairLaw Firm is familiar with how employers can violate the law by not even paying their employees at least a minimum wage. My office provides a free initial consultation and handles most cases on contingency, so contact us now at (866) 281-9288 or at (305) 230-4884.