Guide to Overtime Laws in Ohio

Updated on Author: Sergei Lemberg

Updated on Author: Sergei Lemberg

Ohio ensures fair compensation for employees working extra hours. Therefore, understanding these laws helps you protect your rights and take action if your employer owes you overtime pay.

Consequently, since Ohio’s regular minimum wage is $10.45 per hour, the state’s minimum overtime rate is $15.68 per hour.

Moreover, federal and Ohio overtime laws mandate overtime pay for all non-exempt employees. In addition, employees in non-exempt industries earning less than $684 per week ($35,568 annually) qualify for overtime compensation.

Additionally, eligibility for overtime pay also depends on specific job duties and the type of business involved.

Rate & Calculation

In Ohio, the overtime pay rate is one and a half times (1.5x) your regular hourly rate. Therefore, you qualify for overtime pay for hours worked beyond 40 hours a week.

For instance, if your regular hourly rate is $20 and you work 50 hours in a week, calculate as follows:

  • Regular pay for 40 hours: 40 x $20 = $800
  • Overtime pay for 10 hours: 10 x ($20 x 1.5) = 10 x $30 = $300
  • Total pay for the week: $800 + $300 = $1,100

Who Is Entitled to Overtime?

Most employees in Ohio qualify for overtime pay. Specifically, key factors determining eligibility include:

  • Hourly Employees: All hourly employees qualify for overtime pay for hours worked over 40 hours a week.
  • Non-Exempt Salaried Employees: Additionally, salaried employees may be eligible if they do not meet exemption criteria. Specifically, if they earn below a certain salary threshold and perform non-exempt job duties, they may qualify.

Exemptions and Exceptions

In Ohio, some employees are classified as exempt from overtime pay under federal and state labor laws. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) entitles non-exempt employees to overtime compensation, while exempt employees do not receive this benefit. Accordingly, Ohio’s overtime laws exempt certain categories of employees, including:

  • Executives
  • Professional Employees
  • Administrative Employees
  • Domestic Workers in Private Homes
  • Voluntary Workers for Educational, Charitable, Religious, or Nonprofit Organizations
  • Commission-Based Salespersons or Similar Employees
  • Students Working After School Hours or During Vacations
  • Registered Apprentices and Learners
  • Individuals 18 or Under Not Enrolled in Any Form of Schooling
  • Individuals 18 or Under Who Have Not Graduated from Secondary School
  • I. Bill Trainees During Their Training
  • Certain Seasonal Workers
  • Specific Agricultural Employees in Ohio
  • Workers Involved in Handling, Drying, Packing, Packaging, Processing, Freezing, or Canning Agricultural or Horticultural Commodities
  • Employees of Charitable, Religious, or Nonprofit Organizations Who Live on the Premises
  • Employees Earning Less Than $23,600 Annually

Holiday and Weekend Pay in Ohio

Typically, union employees do not qualify for standard overtime provisions. Additionally, their unions negotiate different overtime rates.

In Ohio, employers are not obligated to pay employees extra wages for working on holidays or weekends. However, Ohio overtime law permits employers and employees to negotiate bargaining agreements. Also, these agreements do not necessarily require additional overtime pay for holiday or weekend work.

Important Considerations

Employers must classify employees correctly as exempt or non-exempt. If in doubt, the default classification should be non-exempt to ensure compliance with overtime laws. Therefore, Ohio uses specific tests to determine if a salaried employee is exempt from overtime:

  • Salary Basis Test: Employee is paid a fixed salary that does not fluctuate based on the number of hours worked.
  • Salary Level Test: Employee’s salary must be at least twice the state minimum wage for full-time employment.
  • Duties Test: The employee’s primary duties must involve executive, administrative, or professional tasks as defined by the law.

“Compensatory Time” in Ohio

Employees in Ohio may opt for compensatory time, or “comp time,” instead of receiving overtime pay. Comp time is earned at the same rate as overtime pay, but instead of extra money, employees get additional time off from work.

Here are some key rules regarding comp time in Ohio:

  • Employees can accumulate up to 240 hours of comp time.
  • Comp time must be used within 180 days of earning it.
  • Employers cannot force employees to take comp time.
  • If an employee is terminated before using their comp time, they will receive monetary compensation instead.

According to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), this practice is only legal for public employers.

Overtime for Tipped Employees in Ohio

Tipped employees in Ohio are eligible for overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours in a week.

Overtime for tipped employees is calculated at 1.5 times their regular hourly rate, without deducting any “tip credits.” Employers cannot take a higher tip credit for overtime hours compared to regular hours. This ensures that tipped employees receive fair compensation for their extra work.

Statute of Limitations for Unpaid Overtime Claims in Ohio

In Ohio, employees have two years from the date of the violation to recover unpaid overtime wages.

For example, if an employee files a lawsuit today, they can seek to recover overtime wages from the past two years.

Conversely, if the employer willfully or knowingly violated overtime regulations, this statute of limitations extends to three years.

Steps to Take if You Believe You Are Owed Overtime

If you believe you are owed back overtime pay, act promptly. Here are the steps you should take:

  1. Document Your Hours: Keep detailed records of your work hours and any communications with your employer regarding overtime.
  2. Review Your Job Classification: Ensure your job classification (exempt vs. non-exempt) is correct.
  3. Contact Your Employer: Discuss your concerns with your employer or HR department.
  4. File a Complaint: If your employer does not address the issue, file a complaint with the Ohio Department of Labor.
  5. Consult an Attorney: For legal advice, consult an employment attorney specializing in wage and hour laws.

Overtime Pay Provisions in Ohio

Ohio law does not mandate the payment of overtime. However, overtime wages can be claimed under the Ohio Wage Payment and Collection Act if the employer and employee had a prior agreement regarding overtime pay. Additionally, even without such an agreement, employees can still claim overtime compensation under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act for hours worked over 40 in a given week.

Do You Have a Case? Get Help

If you believe your employer has violated overtime laws and not given you overtime pay, contact Lemberg Law for assistance. Our experienced legal team will evaluate your case for free. Call us at 475-277-2200 or complete our online form to get started.

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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