A new wage and hour lawsuit has been filed against the cosmetics company Sephora – alleging several violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The FLSA provides many protections to workers – including the provisions that workers are entitled to earn at least minimum wage and that non-exempt employees are entitled to earn overtime compensation at a rate of one and one-half times their standard rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of forty in any work week.
When employers fail to pay their workers minimum wage or abide by the overtime compensation laws, they may be found liable in a FLSA lawsuit and be required to pay damages including back wages.
In this instance, the lawsuit asserts that the company failed to pay workers the compensation they were entitled as the result of certain common employer errors such as misclassifying the workers as exempt when they were non-exempt, failing to pay deserved overtime, and failing to provide mandated breaks.
Often whether a worker should be classified as exempt v. non-exempt is unclear and should be based on a practical evaluation of the tasks a worker does. Even though the exempt v. non-exempt distinction may not always be an easy one to make, this does not justify the failure of some employers to pay their workers the overtime they deserve.