Overtime Pay Rate Determinations Should Include Per Diem Amounts

According to a recent statement by the Department of Labor, the number lawsuits resulting from “per diem” pay are on the rise. Per diem pay is pay that you receive in addition to regular pay, and covers certain reimbursable work-related expenses or costs. Overtime lawsuits may arise in a variety of situations involving per diem pay.

For example, the FLSA provides that all non-exempt employees are entitled to over time pay at a rate of one and one-half their standard rate of pay for all time worked in excess of 40 hours in any one workweek. To determine the “rate of pay’ that serves as a base for this calculation, all remuneration must be added up which includes not only the employee’s stated hourly rate but also any per diem pay. The results of not including such pay can be costly. A recent DOL investigation determined that a labor recruiting and staffing agency that caters to oil field services and maritime fabrication facilities along the Gulf Coast had to pay more than $1.6 million to 1500 current and former employers as the result of its failure to include these amounts in the overtime pay calculation.

If you have questions about the FLSA or believe that you may not have received all the compensation you deserve, consulting with an experienced Atlanta wage and hour attorney is important to determine your next steps.

Situations where problems arise with per diem pay include where you receive a certain stipend or per diem pay each week in addition to your pay, regardless of whether you incur expenses or other costs on your employer’s behalf for its benefit. According to guidelines, this per diem amount should likely be included in the overtime pay calculation.

For more information about per diem pay, overtime pay calculations or any other wage and hour question, please contact the knowledgeable Georgia wage and hour lawyers at Buckley Bala Wilson Mew LLP for an immediate case evaluation.