A Guide to the Fair Labor Standards Act: Navigating Overtime Laws in Georgia

A Guide to the Fair Labor Standards Act: Navigating Overtime Laws in Georgia
6 min read

Overtime laws in Georgia, governed primarily by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), play a crucial role in protecting the rights of workers and ensuring fair compensation for their efforts. Understanding these laws is essential for both employers and employees to foster a work environment that is legally compliant and just. In this article, we will delve into the intricacies of overtime laws in Georgia, explore the key provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act, discuss what to do if employment law rights are violated, and shed light on which employees are entitled to overtime rights.

Overview of Overtime Laws in Georgia

Georgia adheres to the federal standards set forth by the Fair Labor Standards Act, which establishes the minimum wage, overtime pay eligibility, recordkeeping, and child labor standards affecting full-time and part-time workers in the private sector and in federal, state, and local governments.

Under the FLSA, non-exempt employees are entitled to receive overtime pay at a rate of at least one and a half times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked beyond 40 in a workweek. Exempt employees, on the other hand, are not eligible for overtime pay.

Key Provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act in Georgia

  1. Minimum Wage Requirements: The FLSA sets the federal minimum wage, and Georgia employers must comply with this standard. As of the last knowledge update in January 2022, the federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. However, it's important to note that individual states may have their own minimum wage rates, and if the state rate is higher, the higher rate must be paid.
  2. Overtime Pay: Overtime pay is a critical aspect of the FLSA. In Georgia, non-exempt employees are entitled to receive overtime pay for all hours worked beyond 40 in a workweek. The overtime rate must be at least one and a half times the employee's regular hourly rate.
  3. Recordkeeping: Employers are required to maintain accurate records of employees' work hours, wages, and other relevant information. This ensures transparency and helps in resolving disputes related to overtime pay.
  4. Child Labor Standards: The FLSA also includes provisions related to child labor, outlining the permissible work hours and conditions for employees under the age of 18.

What to Do If Your Employment Law Rights Have Been Violated

If you believe your employment law rights, particularly those related to overtime, have been violated, taking appropriate action is crucial. Here are steps to consider:

  1. Document the Violations: Keep detailed records of your work hours, pay stubs, and any communication with your employer regarding overtime. This documentation will be crucial if you decide to pursue legal action.
  2. Consult with Your Employer: Before escalating the matter, consider discussing your concerns with your employer. They may be unaware of the issue, and open communication can sometimes lead to a resolution.
  3. Contact the Wage and Hour Division (WHD): The U.S. Department of Labor's WHD is responsible for enforcing federal labor laws, including the FLSA. You can file a complaint with the WHD, and they may conduct an investigation into the alleged violations.

Should You Take Legal Action?

Deciding whether to take legal action is a significant step and depends on the severity of the violations and your desired outcome. Here are factors to consider:

  1. Severity of Violations: Assess the severity of the violations. If your employer consistently and willfully violates overtime laws, legal action may be necessary to protect your rights and the rights of your colleagues.
  2. Consult with an Employment Attorney: Seek advice from an employment attorney who specializes in wage and hour laws. They can provide insights into the strength of your case and the potential outcomes of legal action.
  3. Potential Remedies: Consider the potential remedies available through legal action. This may include recovering unpaid wages, receiving liquidated damages, and even attorney's fees.

Which Employees Have Overtime Rights and Which Do Not?

Understanding which employees are entitled to overtime rights is crucial for both employers and employees. Generally, employees are classified as either exempt or non-exempt:

  1. Non-Exempt Employees: Non-exempt employees are eligible for overtime pay. This category typically includes hourly workers and those who perform non-managerial, non-administrative, or non-professional tasks.
  2. Exempt Employees: Exempt employees are not entitled to overtime pay. This category includes certain salaried employees, such as executives, administrative professionals, and certain computer professionals, who meet specific criteria outlined in the FLSA.


Navigating overtime laws in Georgia requires a thorough understanding of the Fair Labor Standards Act and its provisions. Employees must be aware of their rights, while employers must strive to create a work environment that complies with these regulations. If employment law rights are violated, taking appropriate steps, including consulting with legal professionals, can help rectify the situation and ensure fair treatment for all. Overtime laws are designed to protect the interests of both employers and employees, fostering a balanced and equitable workplace.

If you believe you are owed overtime pay and are not being fairly compensated, consider contacting the employment attorneys at Lober & Dobson, LLC. We offer a free consultation, with offices in Macon and Roswell, and satellite offices in McDonough and Chattanooga, TN. Contact us today if you are being treated unfairly by your employer and need help to get the money you deserve. Visit our website to learn more about what types of employment law and overtime law we practice in Georgia.

By Jennifer LaCharite, Costa Consultants International

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