North Carolina Overtime Laws – NC

Updated on Author: Sergei Lemberg

Updated on Author: Sergei Lemberg

Working more than 40 hours in a week can be draining, but when you’re earning overtime pay, you can find the motivation you need to work through your free time. North Carolina and the federal government have laws in place to protect employees that qualify for overtime pay.

Under these laws, most employees should receive compensation at a rate of 1.5x their standard pay for working more than 40 hours in a single workweek. However, the law isn’t always easy to clear as there are exceptions and confusions. This is why it’s important to take the time to make sure you’re being properly compensated for the hard work you put in by better understanding the federal and state overtime laws.

Overtime Law Summary for North Carolina

The table below provides an overview of overtime law in North Carolina.

State/Federal Statutes
  • § 95-25.4 Overtime Law (North Carolina)
  • Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA)
Methods For Overtime Calculation:
  • Hourly Employees: 1.5 x Normal pay rate for all hours above 40 in a single workweek.
  • Hourly Employees with Plus Bonus and/or Commission: To determine the regular rate, take the total hours worked multiplied by the hourly rate, then add the workweek bonus/commission. Next, divide by the total hours in a single workweek. Finally, pay half of the adjusted rate for every hour of overtime.
  • Salary Employees: To determine the regular rate, take the salary and divide by the number of hours the salary is supposed to cover.
  • Add the regular rate for each hour up to 40 hours if the hours total less than 40. For all hours after 40, 1.5 x the regular rate.
  • Pay 1.5 x the regular rate for each hour over if the total hours worked is above 40.
Overtime Rules in North Carolina
  • After working 45 hours, seasonal amusement or recreation employees qualify for overtime.
  • Government employees can receive “comp time.”
  • Working more than 8 hours in a day does not qualify for overtime.
  • The statute of limitations on collecting unpaid overtime is two years.
Wage Complaint Filing Process
  • File a Complaint to the U.S. Dept. of Labor
  • File a Wage Complaint Form with the North Carolina Dept. of Labor

Note: New legislation, high court rulings (federal court decisions included), ballot initiatives, and other influences can change state laws. Please refer to a qualified North Carolina attorney or complete your own research to verify the local and federal laws for accuracy.

What Are North Carolina’s Overtime Laws?

Both state and federal laws govern overtime pay. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 1938 is the federal law that sets the minimum for the treatment of employees by employers. The law also sets restrictions on child labor and minimum wages.

Under North Carolina law, overtime pay is also set to 1.5x the standard rate of pay for any hours worked over 40 in one workweek (regardless of the pay periods). Seasonal amusement works and those who work in recreational businesses are entitled to overtime after working 45 hours in a single workweek as well. Daily overtime, based on working longer than 8 hours a day, is not provided.

How Much Overtime Can Tipped Employees Earn?

North Carolina wage laws also govern tipped employees. Employers in the state can take a wage credit that applies to the payment of the minimum wage. This credit is based on the tips their employees earn. Employers then calculate the regular hourly rate by including both the employee’s cash wage and the tip credit. Employers cannot pay overtime based on a rate lower than the federal minimum wage, however.

Are Salaried Employees Eligible for Overtime?

If you are a salaried employee who works more than 40 hours in a week, then you can still be entitled to overtime pay. There are exceptions made for executives, managers, and supervisors (those charged with the duty of supervising employees and receive a minimum salary of $455). These types of employees are exempt from the FLSA.

Do You Think You Have a Case? Contact Lemberg Law for Counsel

If you feel that an employer has taken advantage of you or someone you care about, please get in touch with the Lemberg Law legal team. Complete our form for a FREE case evaluation, or call  475-277-2200 NOW. You may be entitled to compensation for damages, injuries, or lost wages for Federal and state wage law violations.

Sergei Lemberg

About the Author:

Sergei Lemberg is an attorney focusing on consumer law, class actions related to automotive issues, and personal injury litigation. With nearly two decades of experience, his areas of practice include Lemon Law (vehicle defects), Debt Collection Harassment, TCPA (illegal robocalls and texts), Fair Credit Reporting Act, Overtime claims, Personal Injury cases, and Class Actions. He has consistently been recognized as the nation's "most active consumer attorney." In 2020, Mr. Lemberg represented Noah Duguid before the United States Supreme Court in the landmark case Duguid v. Facebook. He is also the author of "Defanging Debt Collectors," a guide that empowers consumers to fight back against debt collectors and prevail, as well as "Lemon Law 101: The Laws That Lemon Dealers Don't Want You to Know."

See more posts from Sergei Lemberg

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