Protect Your Rights During an Employment Dispute
The Strom Law Firm employment lawyers represent individuals whose rights have been violated in the workplace as employees.
Whether you are dealing with your employer’s failure to pay wages (whether failure to pay minimum wage or overtime), you may feel as if you do not have anywhere to turn. Even if you voluntarily quit your job, you may be subject to a non-compete or other type of employment agreement, which leaves you feeling trapped and unable to follow your chosen career path. The Columbia SC Employment Lawyers at the Strom Law Firm. L.L.C. understands that your job is your livelihood and know what is at stake. Give us a call today for a free consultation (803) 252-4800.
Understanding At-Will Employment
South Carolina is an at-will employment state, meaning that you have the right to quit your job at any time for any reason or no reason at all; likewise, your employer can hire or fire you for any reason or no reason at all.
However, an employer cannot fire you for any reason:
- is illegal or protected under State or Federal law,
- violates the express terms of an implied or express contractual agreement, or
- violates public policy.
The employment attorneys at the Strom Law Firm represent South Carolina employees in employment matters including:
- wage and hour issues, including being forced to work off of the clock
- employment agreements, including covenants not to compete and restrictive covenants,
- whistleblower or qui tam actions, and
- violations of the South Carolina Wage Payment Act or failure to pay wages when due.
Non-Compete Agreements in South Carolina
Frequently employees who are planning to compete with a current or former employer may find themselves subject to a non-compete or restrictive covenant agreement. Whether your non-compete agreement is enforceable depends upon whether a Court finds it “reasonable” under the circumstances. Our Employment Lawyers can help.
To be enforceable, the agreement must be:
- Supported by valuable consideration;
- Necessary to protect the legitimate interest of your employer;
- Reasonably limited with regard to time and geographic scope;
- Not unduly harsh or oppressive in limiting your ability to earn a living;
- Reasonable from a public policy perspective.
Every non-compete agreement must be viewed based upon its own set of facts. Contact the Strom law firm today for a free consultation to discuss the enforceability of your employment agreement.
Unpaid Wage Claims
As an employee, you expect to be paid for hours worked. If you are not paid for each and every hour that you work, you may have a claim for wages under the South Carolina Wage Payment Act. If you feel you have not been paid the federal minimum wage and/or paid for each hour worked, you need to contact a South Carolina employment attorney who will fight for your rights.
Overtime Payment Laws
If you work in South Carolina and feel you are not being paid for hours worked, including overtime, we may be able to help. The best Employment lawyers agree that According to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), anyone receiving hourly compensation must be paid time and a half for any hours worked over 40 during one workweek. The FLSA and other employment laws may not cover weekends or holidays unless overtime hours are being worked. Many times employers will pay extra for holiday or weekend hours; however, it is not required and is left to the discretion of the employer.
Overtime Pay Guidelines
To be eligible for overtime pay, one must meet one or more of the following criteria:
- Receive less than $23,600 annually
- Be a non-management employee performing maintenance, construction, installation, production, repair, clerical, secretarial and/or kitchen work
- Be an hourly employee
- Be a commissioned employee who does not regularly travel
- Be a salaried employee earning less than $455 per workweek excluding executives, professional, administrative, or outside sales professionals
Jobs that almost always qualify for overtime pay include:
- File clerks
- Inside salespeople
- Customer service representatives
- I.T./help desk
- Accounts payable/receivable representatives
Securing Unpaid Wages: Federal Minimum Wage Law
If you feel your employer is not paying you Federal minimum wage, and/or is not paying you for hours worked, you should seek the advice of a South Carolina employment attorney`. Your company, by law, is required to pay you at least $7.25 per hour unless you make tips. Similarly, depending upon your job duties, and subject to certain exceptions, your employer is required to pay you for each of the hours that you work.
Federal Minimum Wage Exclusions
The only people excluded from making $7.25 an hour are those receiving tips. If you work in a job where you receive tips, your company may only be required to pay you $2.13 an hour.
For this exclusion to apply, the number of tips you receive must equal at least the federal minimum wage. You must also retain all of your tips and must regularly receive more than $30 a month in tips. Your employer is required to pay the difference if your tips and wages do not equal the federal minimum wage.
Call Today for a Free Employment Lawyers Consultation
When filing an overtime claim, you may want to enlist the help of a South Carolina employment attorney. Understanding overtime laws can be daunting. The Strom Law Firm, L.L.C., can help you interpret the law and seek the overtime compensation you deserve. Many overtime claim cases are won because the employer failed to keep adequate wage and hour records. The Strom Law Firm will investigate all aspects of your overtime wage claim and seek to secure you the compensation you have rightfully earned. Call us today for a free consultation. (803) 252-4800.
Depending upon the facts of your case, you may be eligible to ask for three times your actual damages and attorney fees. Whether we take your case individually or you join in on one of our employee class action lawsuits, we will seek to get you the compensation you deserve.
Many times employees are scared to confront their superiors about lack of payment. With the help of an employment lawyer near me lawyer at the Strom Law Firm, L.L.C., you may be able to gain what is rightfully yours. You deserve a fair wage payment.