Wage & Hour Laws
The law requires that most employers pay at least minimum wage (currently $7.25 per hour in Iowa) for all hours worked. Employees who are “nonexempt” from the Fair Labor Standards Act must be paid 1 and 1/2 times their regular wage for all hours worked over 40 in a workweek. Some managers and other professionals are “exempt” from the overtime regulations. Employers often miscategorize employees as “exempt,” resulting in the employer’s illegal failure to pay overtime compensation.
In Iowa, tipped workers (employees of restaurants, hotels, motels, inns, or cabins who make at least $30 per month in tips) must be paid at least $4.35 per hour regardless of how much money they make in tips.
According to overtime regulations, “comp time” can be substituted for overtime only for employees of the government.
Iowa law requires that employees be paid on a regular basis (at least monthly) and in full. If your paycheck bounces and you incur overdrafts on your checking account as a result, your employer may be responsible for paying those charges.
It is a violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act, overtime regulations, and other employment laws for your employer to retaliate against you because you make a complaint concerning overtime pay, minimum wage, or unauthorized deductions from your pay.
Some examples of Fair Labor Standards Act and other wage law violations include:
- Your employer has you perform tasks before you clock in or after you clock out
- You are required to be at work 15 minutes prior to the time you can clock in
- You have to spend time gathering supplies or putting on gear prior to the time you are allowed to clock in
- Your paycheck is too low or bounces when you try to cash it
- You are classified as “exempt” and your employer docks your pay for being gone for time periods of less than one day
- Your employer makes deductions from your paycheck that were not authorized by you or a court
- Your employer fails to pay you in full or for your earned vacation time after you quit or are fired