It’s that time of year again. The weather in Florida is slowly changing and so is minimum wage. Effective January 1, 2014, employees earning minimum wage in Florida will receive a 14 cent pay raise, bringing the minimum wage to $7.93 per hour. The minimum wage for employees who earn tips will increase by 14 cents from $4.77 to $4.91 per hour. English and Spanish versions of the required 2014 Florida minimum wage poster can be found here. The federal poster, which must be posted in addition to the Florida poster, is always available on the U.S. Department of Labor website.

For retail (or service establishment) employers who take advantage of the FLSA's overtime exception for commissioned employees, the Florida minimum wage is not a factor and so they need only comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) requirements. Thus, commissioned employees must be paid an average rate of $10.88/hour (1 ½ times the federal minimum wage) in any week in which they work overtime. Employers should exercise care before invoking this overtime exemption since at least 50% of the employee’s total compensation must be derived from commissions.

If your company has never asked counsel to conduct a wage and hour audit, now is the time. Florida continues to be one of the leading states for FLSA lawsuits. Our employment attorneys can help identify any significant risks in your pay plans that may violate federal or state law and recommend ways to reduce or eliminate such risks. We will also review a sample of your employee timecards and identify practices of your payroll company, payroll department or your employees that often lead to litigation.