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You have reached the employment rights law website for Shankman Leone. We are located in downtown Tampa, Florida and represent clients in employment law matters throughout the State of Florida.  We have over thirty years of combined experience in handling virtually all types of employment claims, including:

o       Unpaid Overtime

o       Unpaid Wages and Commissions

o       Sexual Harassment

o       Employment Discrimination

o       Retaliation and Whistleblower

o       Family and Medical Leave Act

o       Breach of Contract

o       Disability Rights 

Unpaid Overtime

Under most circumstances, if you work more than 40 hours per week, federal law requires that your employer pay you “time and one half” your regular rate of pay for your overtime hours.  The simplest example of this is when an employee is compensated on an hourly basis.  For instance, if you are paid $10.00 per hour, every hour over 40 entitles you to $15.00 per hour.

Even if you are paid a weekly salary, on a commission basis, on a piece or day rate or some other method of compensation, you may still be entitled to overtime if you work over 40 hours a week. Many employers and employees wrongly assume that as long as the employee is not paid on an hourly basis, then no overtime compensation is required.  The reality, however, is that every worker is entitled to overtime compensation unless the employer can show that the employee is specifically “exempt” from the Fair Labor Standards Act.  These exemptions are few and far between and the employer must comply with all the legal requirements to take advantage of an exemption.

Federal law allows employees to recover their unpaid overtime for a period two years prior to the filing of their lawsuit.  Where the employer’s violation is deemed “willful,” employees can recover their overtime for three years.  In most cases, emplyers that have violated the federal wgae and hour law must pay a penalty for failing to pay their employees properly the first time.  What this means is that your employer may have to pay you double the amount of overtime you are owed.  Also, employers that have been found to have violated the Fair Labor Standards Act will likely be required to pay their employee’s attorneys’ fees incurred in the lawsuit.

Our attorneys have represented clients in hundreds of claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act.  We have a complete understanding of the complexities of the overtime law and can determine whether your employer is paying you properly.

Harassment

Harassment is a form of discrimination that is prohibited by federal and state laws.  To have a claim for illegal harassment, the offensive conduct must be based on an employee’s race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, or other protected category.  In addition, the harassment must be unwelcome and it must reach a certain threshold before it will violate the law.  Harassment that is particularly severe or that continues over an extended period of time will generally be sufficient to reach the required threshold. 

Sexual harassment is the most common form of harassment in the workplace and can take many forms.  Examples of sexual harassment include sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and inappropriate physical contact.  Sexual harassment, however, does not have to be explicitly sexual to violate the law.  Acts of physical aggression or violence and incidents of verbal abuse that are directed toward an employee because of his or her gender may also constitute illegal sexual harassment.  

Whether an employer may be held liable for harassment depends upon whether the harassment was committed by a supervisor or a co-worker.  When an employee is harassed by a co-worker, the employer cannot be held liable for the harassment unless the employer knew or should have known about the harassment and failed to take prompt action to stop it from occurring.  When an employee is harassed by a supervisor, however, the employer can be held automatically liable for the harassment unless it can prove that it exercised reasonable care to prevent and correct promptly any harassing behavior, and that the employee unreasonably failed to take advantage of any preventive or corrective opportunities provided by the employer.  When harassment by a supervisor culminates in an adverse employment action against an employee, such as a termination or promotion denial, the employer can be held automatically liable for both the harassment and the adverse employment action.

If you believe you have been subjected to harassment in the workplace and for more info about employment rights please call us today

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