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Understanding How Wage and Overtime Disputes Come into Court

Under laws such as the Fair Labor Standard Act (FLSA), employees have a right to certain wages and overtime payments depending on their classification as exempt or non-exempt employees. When individuals are not treated fairly and do not receive the legally mandated payments to which they are entitled, options exist to ensure employers comply with the strictures of the law.

Individual lawsuits

An employee can file a private lawsuit for back wages, overtime, and for an equal amount as liquidated damages. Depending on the situation, either a two or three year statute of limitations for bringing the action applies. Employees who are discharged or discriminated against for taking action under the FLSA can be awarded equitable relief as well as compensation.

Collective lawsuits

In some situations, class action lawsuits may be brought by one or more employees against an employer to recover wages. To be certified as a valid class, the employees bringing the suit must show they are similarly situated, such as being the victims of a common company policy, design, or plan. Factors that may be examined include the following:

  • Employment related differences among the employees must be few
  • The defenses available to the employer against the employees are essentially the same
  • Evidence and procedural questions of all claims are similar

After a class is certified, the other aggrieved employees can opt into the suit.

Knowledgeable New Jersey employment lawyers can help address any employment related issues you may have including questions about the FLSA.

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Neil  H.  Deutsch Attorney Photo
Neil H. Deutsch
Senior Partner

About Neil H. Deutsch has been practicing law for over 35 years and is known as a skilled negotiator in employment and discrimination law. He believes in a bottom-line approach of risk analysis and cost effectiveness for his clients. "Case evaluation is something we take seriously," says Mr. Deutsch who seeks top net dollar for…

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Bruce L. Atkins
Senior Partner

About Bruce L. Atkins is regarded as one of New Jersey’s premier practitioners of employment and civil litigation. He has been selected to the New Jersey Super Lawyers prestigious list every year since 2005.  This honor, bestowed upon a recipient by the votes of his peers, is a powerful nod to the skill Mr. Atkins…

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Adam J. Kleinfeldt
Partner

About Adam J. Kleinfeldt joined Deutsch Atkins, P.C. in March of 2015.  He primarily represents individuals in employment litigations such as discrimination, retaliation, and whistle blowing matters.  He has extensive experience in all phases of the litigation process. Adam has obtained significant results for some of his clients, including a $525,000 jury verdict in a…

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Diane Englander Peyser
Attorney

About Diane Englander Peyser joined Deutsch Atkins, PC in September 2018 where she represents employees in wrongful termination, retaliation, harassment, and discrimination matters. Prior to joining Deutsch Atkins, PC, Diane represented clients in all aspects of employment law on behalf of employees involving unemployment appeals, claims of sexual harassment, LGBT discrimination, disability discrimination, FMLA, New…

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Debra M. McGarvey
Attorney

About Debra M. McGarvey joined Deutsch Atkins, P.C. in December 2019. She has extensive experience defending employees and employers in state and federal court in employment litigation matters. She has represented clients on various issues arising out of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD), the New Jersey Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA), the Americans…

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