When Must An Employer Pay Overtime?

The Wisconsin overtime law applies to all employers except agriculture, private domestic/companion work, and non­profit organizations. Overtime pay means time and one­half the regular rate of pay times the hours actually worked over 40 in any week. Employers may schedule their employees as they wish. This means that overtime may be made mandatory. Employers may also change employees' schedules during a given week in order to prevent them from working overtime. A "week" is considered to be the established reoccurring period of 7 consecutive days. It is against the law for employers and employees to agree not to pay overtime. Hours paid for time not worked such as sick leave, vacation or holidays do not have to be counted as hours worked for computing overtime pay. Some public works construction projects require daily overtime. Except in the public sector (government employment), employers cannot use compensatory time plans to reimburse employees who work overtime hours instead of paying the overtime pay. Overtime wages must be paid within the pay period they are earned. If an employee is not receiving overtime as required, the employee may file a Labor Standards Complaint. It is not necessary to speak to an investigator. Your complaint should include as much information as possible and it will be reviewed.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

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