How to Navigate Nevada Wage and Hour Claims
In the state of Nevada, there are federal and state laws that dictate how much you will be paid, when you will be paid, and even more.
However, if your employer fails to follow these rules, you could very well be entitled to collect your unpaid wages, and even extra money from penalties that in results punishes your employer for not following the laws.
Today, we are going to go over how your wages are calculated and even collected to see what you are truly owed.
Nevada Wage and Hour Claims
Throughout the United States, each state has their own set minimum wage. If they do not have their own set minimum wage, then they will go by the federal wage. The federal wage comes in at $7.25 per hour.
In the state of Nevada, the minimum wage is currently $7.25, that is only if your employer gives your health benefits. If your employer does not give your health benefits, then the minimum wage is $8.25 an hour.
But, if you live in a county or even a city that has a higher minimum wage, you will receive that amount instead of the federal minimum wage.
How to Calculate Unpaid Wage Claims?
Now, you are wondering how in the world can you figure out your unpaid wage claims. All you need to do is find the difference of what you were originally paid for the hour and what you should have been paid for that said hour. Then you will need to time it by the number of hours you worked.
For instance, let’s say you are at a job in Nevada and your employer didn’t offer your health benefits, but they only paid you $7.25 for the first three weeks of you were there. Let’s say in those three weeks you worked a total of 120 hours.
Now, your employer should have been paying all along $8.25 an hour. So, what you will need to do is multiple $1 (the difference) to 120 hours. You get a grand total of $120.
A more common wage violations made by employers is failing to pay overtime premium. Now under state and federal law, employees will be entitled to overtime if they put in over 40 hours within a workweek.
Now, the state of Nevada has a law that also has a thing about daily overtime. This law states that employees who make under 1.5 times the minimum wage will have the chance to get overtime, if they put in over 8 working hours in a day.
However, you should keep in mind that not every employee will be entitled to receive overtime either. You should know that all hourly, nonexempt workers will be entitled to overtime, but there are other employee categories that will be exempt.
If you are wondering who is exempt from getting overtime, they are typically the “white-collar” employees such as people who are high-level administrators, managers, and salespeople.
Your employer will have to show proof that you fit into one of these VERY narrow exemptions, if they truly do not want to pay you overtime.
How to Calculate Your Unpaid Overtime Claims?
Now, if your employer does not want to pay you for those overtime hours, your unpaid overtime claims will be the difference between what you paid and what you should have been paid.
Now to truly calculate your overtime hours, you should know that you are entitled to get time and a half.
What does this mean?
This means you will be getting a bonus 50-percent on top of your current hourly rate. For instance, if your current hourly rate is $16 an hour, when you are in overtime, you will get $24 an hour.
Unpaid Time Off & Unpaid Breaks
In the state of Nevada, you will have the right to have a 30-minute unpaid lunch break, if you work a straight through eight-hour shift.
In the state of Nevada, you as an employee will also be entitled to have a PAID ten-minute break every four hours of your shift. The only time you are NOT entitled to a PAID ten-minute break is when you work less than 3.5 hours.
You should also note that the federal law does not talk about the right for employees to have a break during their workday. However, if your employer chooses to give you work breaks, the federal law does state that you are required to be paid for the following:
- ANY break that lasts 20 minutes or less throughout your workday
- ANY time during your workday, where you are REQUIRED to work.
How to Calculate Unpaid Time Off & Unpaid Breaks?
When you need to calculate your unpaid break wages, this will be a little bit trickier than the above calculations.
You will need to figure out how much time you spent on your breaks that should have been paid for. This can be tricky if you don’t remember the exact times.
Once you figure that out, you will need to time this unpaid time to your hourly rate. You also do not want to forget about overtime as well. If your unpaid breaks are supposed to be counted towards your work time, then that could possibly put you over 40 hours a week, where you should have been getting time and a half pay.
Prevailing Wages Nevada
The federal law will give you the employer the opportunity to receive these cash penalties along with your unpaid wages, if you win your lawsuit or administrative claims.
Now, we are going to get into some of the more common penalties that you will see for your employer failing to pay you the correct amount.
If your employer fails to pay you overtime or your corrected minimum wage, then you will have the chance to request for liquidated damaged. Now, liquidated damages are going to be in the amount of what your unpaid wages are.
So, in short, let’s say your employer did not pay you your overtime. Your overtime was at $3,000. You will now have the chance to add on an additional $3,000 in liquidated damages, so you would get a total of $6,000.
What many people do not know is under the Nevada Law your employer is required to give you your last paycheck immediately if they fired you, you quit, or they laid you off. When we say immediately they either have 7 days or they can pay you on your next payday, but whichever one comes first.
If the employer does not pay you on time, that is another penalty. They will be required to pay you one day’s wages for every day your paycheck is not sent to you, up to 30 days.
How to Start a Lawsuit?
If your employer failed to pay you the correct amount of money, the next step is to start a lawsuit, or you can opt into filing a wage claim with the Nevada Labor Commissioner.
It does not matter what you decide to do, what you ultimately will need to do is get in contact with a Nevada wage and hour lawyer who can help you file your claim or lawsuit on your behalf. This will save you a lot of time and frustrations. If you succeed at your lawsuit, your lawyer can even ask the judge to have your place of employment to pay for your attorney fees as well.
If your employer is failing to pay you the money you are owed, you need to either file a wage claim or start your lawsuit within 2 years of the incident. You will not be permitted to proceed if you file after the two-year mark.