12 Mistakes Employers Make in Paying Non-Exempt Workers

By Jon Hyman

Jun. 15, 2016

Given that on Dec. 1, 4.2 million exempt workers will transition to non-exempt status, it is timely that the Richmond Times-Dispatch thought to share 9 mistakes employers make in paying hourly/non-exempt workers. I’ve added numbers 10, 11, and 12.

There is no time like the present to correct any of these errors you might be making with your non-exempt employees. I’ve covered (almost) all of these topics before, so follow the links for a deeper dive.

1. Not paying for unapproved overtime.

2. Not paying for extra work employees “volunteer” to do.

3. Allowing “comp time”.

4. Improperly withholding pay for breaks.

5. Improperly paying for lunch periods.

6. Failing to pay for off-hours work.
7. Improperly paying for “on call” time.

8. Improperly paying for travel time.

9. Spreading hours over a pay period.

10. Failing to account for off-duty emails.

11. Mistakenly assuming that all salaried workers are exempt.

12. Failing to audit your wage and hour practices (You haven’t audited your wage/hour practices for years … or ever? We need to talk.)

Jon Hyman is a partner at Meyers, Roman, Friedberg & Lewis in Cleveland. To comment, email

Jon Hyman is a partner in the Employment & Labor practice at Wickens Herzer Panza. Contact Hyman at

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