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November 04, 2010
Wage & Hour Violations in U.S. Widespread

Wage and hour violations are “rampant” in American workplaces, according to a survey cited by California attorney Laura Innes. Innes spoke at BLR’s National Employment Law Update last week in Las Vegas, NV.

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Innes highlighted the following survey results:

  • Over 25% of survey respondents reported that they had received less than the minimum wage in the previous week, and 60% of those reported being underpaid by more than $1 per hour.
  • More than 75% (!) of survey respondents reported not being compensated for overtime worked in the previous week—and they averaged 11 hours of weekly overtime. (Innes noted to her HR-manager-audience that she was skeptical of this finding, but that nevertheless this is what the survey respondents said.)
  • Almost a quarter worked off the clock (and weren't paid for it), and nearly two-thirds of those entitled to a meal break didn't receive the full, uninterrupted, work-free break required by law.
  • Just over 40% had deductions illegally taken from their paycheck (for breakage or to pay for tools or other items required for work, for example.)

Attorney Innes’ remarks were part of a larger presentation entitled “Wage/Hour Spotlight: In-Depth Compliance Analysis” given at BLR’s National Employment Law Update, Las Vegas, NV, Oct. 27-29, 2010. She is with the South San Francisco, CA law firm, Simpson, Garrity, Innes & Jacuzzi PC. E-mail contact information:

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