Industryweek 2717 Lawsuitchart

Wage and Hour Lawsuits Proliferate

Aug. 15, 2012
Federal wage and hour lawsuits are on the rise.

Federal wage and hour lawsuits are on the rise. More than 7,000 such lawsuits were filed under the Fair Labor Standards Act in the 12-month period ending March 31, marking the fourth consecutive year of increases, according to data supplied by law firm Seyfarth Shaw.

The total number filed was 7,064.

Richard Alfred, chair of the firm’s wage and hour litigation practice, said misclassification of employees, alleged uncompensated work performed “off the clock” and miscalculations of overtime pay for non-exempt workers formed the bulk of the suits.

He identified four primary contributors to the rising numbers of federal wage and hour lawsuits: weak economy, outdated FLSA and state laws that do not reflect changes in technology, lack of clarity in existing laws, and the potential for lucrative recovery by plaintiffs and their lawyers.

“FLSA claims are still gaining momentum,” Alfred says. “They continue to be a major, growing threat to U.S. employers.”

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