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Ohio Employment Law Ohio labor and employment law lawsuits allege violations of Ohio labor laws including wage and hour violations. The rights of employees in Ohio are protected by a number of laws including prevailing wage laws and minimum wage laws, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA). Possible violations of Ohio employment law include wrongful termination, failure to pay minimum wage and misclassification.

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Wage and Hour Lawsuits


Ohio wage and hour provisions are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act. Lawsuits claiming employers violate wage and hour laws attempt to recover wages owed to employees who allege they were not paid enough for the work they performed, either during regular work hours or during overtime. Sometimes, the employer misclassifies employees as independent contractors to avoid paying workers minimum wage or benefits.

Ohio Overtime Misclassification

Some Ohio employers misclassify employees as exempt from overtime pay to avoid paying them overtime wages, meaning employees are not paid as much as they should be. Ohio employees are owed one-and-one-half times the regular rate of pay when their hours worked exceed 40 hours in a week.

Employees who are exempt from overtime pay must spend more than 50 percent of their time involved in managerial, administrative, professional or outside sales activities. If less than 50 percent of an employee's time is spent in those duties, the employee should be eligible for overtime pay.

Ohio Minimum Wage and Overtime Pay Laws

Ohio minimum wage and overtime laws cover employees across the state, including but not limited to, Toledo, Cleveland, Akron, Youngstown, Canton, Sandusky and Columbus.

Ohio minimum wage is set at $7.70 an hour for non-tipped employees and $3.85 an hour for tipped employees. Individuals whose earning capacity is affected by physical or mental impairments or injuries may be permitted to work for less than the set minimum wage.

Employers who make more than $150,000.00 per year must pay overtime at one and one-half the employee's hourly rate when the employee works more than 40 hours in a week. Employers who gross less than $150,000.00 are not required to pay overtime for more than 40 hours in a week.

Ohio Prevailing Wage Act

Ohio's prevailing wage law requires public authorities to pay the locally prevailing rate of wages to workers on construction projects commissioned by public authorities. The prevailing rate of wages must be paid for any new construction with a total estimated project cost of more than $73,891.00. Furthermore, any reconstruction, alteration, repair or renovation of any public improvement, with a total project cost of more than $22,166.00 is covered by the prevailing wage law.

At Will Employment

Ohio is an "employment at will" state. As such, at-will employees can be terminated for any reason. The only exception is for employees who are covered by a contract or union agreement governing the terms of employment. Employees who are covered by an employment contract can usually only be terminated for the reasons set out in the contract. In Ohio, this extends to contracts that are implied. At-will employment also protects the employee's right to resign.

Unlawful terminations violate legal protections, including discrimination or harassment, whistleblower protections, absence to serve on a jury, retaliation for asserting legal rights or violations of employment or union contracts. Employees who have been wrongfully discharged may be able to file a lawsuit for breach of contract.

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)

The Fair Labor Standards Act is a federal law regarding employee wages and hours worked, including overtime hours and wages. Under the FLSA, some workers can be exempted from overtime pay. However, those workers must fit the criteria the FLSA sets out for exemption. Ohio's laws also apply to employment subject to the FLSA. In cases where both the FLSA and state law apply, the law setting the higher standards must be observed.

More information on how the Fair Labor Standards Act applies to overtime can be found here.

Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal act that requires covered employers to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to eligible employees for the following reasons: birth and care of the employee's newborn child; care for a child after adoption or foster care placement; care for the employee's spouse, child or parent with a serious health condition; or for a serious health condition that affects the employee's ability to work.

Employees are eligible for FMLA coverage if they have worked for a covered employer for at least one year, for 1,250 hours over the previous 12 months (not necessarily consecutive months) and if a minimum of 50 employees are employed by the same employer within 75 miles.

Covered employers are those who employ more than 50 employees within 75 miles of the worksite and have at least 50 employees who work 20 or more work-weeks in the current calendar year or the previous calendar year. Public agencies are covered by the FMLA regardless of the number of employees.

Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA)

The Occupational Safety and Health Act is a federal law enacted to ensure that employees work in an environment that is free from recognized hazards. It is part of the United States Code, Title 29, Chapter 15.

Federal laws also protect employees from sexual harassment and discrimination, including race, age, disability and pregnancy discrimination.

Employees who feel their rights have been violated may have the opportunity to bring their complaint before the courts.

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Last updated on May-7-15

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READER COMMENTS

Posted by
Doug
on
I bid on a Nursing job within the hospital I worked for and a few weeks later I was offered the job. I asked what the wage was and I was told it was $28.50 an hour. I said that was a significance wage increase and asked if she was sure that was what the job paid she replied she was looking at the paper and repeated the amount of $28.50 and hour to me. I then accepted the job, and immediately told my wife she could retire. After working the new job for almost 4 months I was called into my manager's office and was told there had been a mistake and they were going to reduce my wage by almost $3.50 an hour.
Can my mutually agreed upon wage be reduced like that after my wife and I made life changing decisions based upon that wage agreement? What recourse if any do I have?

Posted by
carlos
on
Can it be considered overtime hours if i have not yet reached my 40 hours in a 40 work week ? For example, my work week starts on a Saturday, Saturday I work 10 hours, on Monday I worked 9 hours, I was off on Tuesday on Wednesday I was sent home early because they said I had three hours and nine minutes of overtime, I was off on Thursday because of Thanksgiving holiday, now on Friday I will not get in my eight hours to reach my 40 hour work week because they took the three hours away from me on Wednesday because they claimed it was over time now I am NOT getting my 40 hours this week. can those three hours be considered overtime If I have not yet reached my 40 hours in a work week. is it considered overtime if you work extra hours before you get your 40 hours? or is over time defined as anything worked over 40 hours in a 40 hour work week. So my question is it considered overtime if I work extra hours during the week before I get my 40 hours or is over time defined as anything worked over 40 hours in a 40 hour work week ?

Posted by
michelle
on
My brother worked at a job part time and he had been there for some time, then found another job but the guy needed him to start before 2 weeks, so my brother put in that this would be his last week, the employer owes him his last two weeks he worked, how long does that employer have to pay him his 355.00 check?
The employer sent him a text saying that he will put the check in the mail when he has a opportunity. Is this for real? Is this right? Legally he cant hold his money, no employer can.
What can he do?

Thanks concerned sister

Posted by
Ohio
on
My employer is withholding my last paycheck because his “personal” computer crashed and all his files are gone. He told me if I get them back I can have my check. I need help with this.

Posted by
Ohio
on
No job, falsely terminated, threatened.

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