Common Unpaid Overtime Issues in the Health Care Industry

Employees in the health care industry are entitled to be paid for all hours they worked, whether they are at their usual work stations or not. Often, employers in the health care industry will fail to count many hours that should be included as hours worked, resulting in health care employees being owed unpaid overtime. Such “off-the-clock” hours would include pre- and post-shift duties, travel time during scheduled work hours from site to site, and work related to meetings and training.

Another common issue regarding overtime pay in the health care industry is the misclassification of employees. Employers often misclassify their employees as exempt from overtime pay. Salaried managerial, administrative and professional employees may be exempt from overtime regulations, but only if they meet certain salary, duty, and/or educational requirements. For more information regarding these exemptions, please click here.

Many clerical staff members at hospitals and doctor’s offices are misclassified as exempt from overtime pay under the administrative exemption. Data entry and other lower-level clerical staff whose jobs do not involve significant decision-making are generally entitled to overtime pay. Whether a nurse is entitled to overtime pay can depend on his or her job duties, as well as the type of nurse involved. Registered nurses who are registered by the appropriate State examining board generally meet the duties requirements for the learned professional exemption, and if paid on a salary basis of at least $455 per week, may be classified as exempt. Licensed practical nurses and other similarly situated health care employees, on the other hand, generally do not qualify as learned professionals, as possession of a specialized advanced academic degree is not a requirement for entry into such positions, and are typically entitled to overtime pay.

Another issue prevalent in the health care industry with respect to unpaid overtime is that many health care employers fail to include bonuses, shift differentials and other types of compensation in the regular rate of pay. Instead, they simply pay their non-exempt employees using their hourly rate. But other types of compensation should be used to calculate an employee’s “regular rate of pay,” from which the one-and-a-half times for overtime pay is calculated.

If you work in the health care industry and believe you might be due unpaid overtime, call Texas unpaid overtime attorney Josh Borsellino at 817.908.9861 or complete this online form to learn more about your rights.  Mr. Borsellino’s office is located in Fort Worth, but he handles unpaid overtime cases in Dallas, Arlington, Denton, Waco, Cleburne, Midland, Odessa, Abilene, Amarillo, Austin, San Antonio, Houston and across Texas.  There are no out of pocket costs to you to call or email and learn your rights regarding overtime pay.