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Fair Labor Standards Act

The Fair labor standards act(FLSA) was established in 1938 under the government of working president Franklin D. Roosevelt. It focuses on the establishment of standard pay for the employees to prevent them from getting any unfair pay. This U.S labor law establishes the concept of minimum wage, and overtime pay and prohibits child labor. 

The FLSA is a federal law that provides a sense of security to any employee and prevents any unjust or unruly pay, establishes minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and employment standards affecting employees in the private sector and public sector.

Characteristics of FLSA:

  • Payment Of Minimum Wages

According to the government, employers subject to the Fair Labours Standard Act must pay a current federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour effective from July 24, 2009. As of January 1, 2013, 19 states and the District of Columbia have minimum wage rates higher than the federal minimum wage rate.

  • Overtime Pay

Employers are asked to pay one and half times the original or the regular pay if any employee works overtime. Also, regular payments must be given for all hours an employee worked over 40 hours in a week. 

  • Record Keeping

Every employer must keep records of their existing employee’s identifying characteristics, personal details, hours worked, and total wages earned and everything must be accurate without any errors. 

  • Strictly abolishes child labor

Children under the age of 18 are not allowed to do dangerous jobs such as excavation, manufacturing explosives, mining, etc. And children under the age of 16 are not permitted to work in any manufacturing company, mining, etc.



The FLSA does not apply to all employees. There are some exemptions in terms of employers and employees as well. For example, employees working in computer-related services(system analysts, programmers, etc.) are exempted from FLSA basic standards.

Domestic Service Workers who provide companionship in private homes are also exempted from both minimum wages and overtime standards of FLSA. Workers working on the agricultural farms, seasonal workers, salespeople who often work outside the office, freelance workers working individually, individual contractors and consultants, etc are exempted from FLSA.


  1. Laying off an employee or discriminating against him for filing a complaint or for participating in a legal proceeding under FLSA is a violation of FLSA.
  2. Violating laws willingly could be treated as an offense and the violator could be fined up to $10,000. A second violation of FLSA willingly may also result in imprisonment. 
  3. Violators involved in child labour provisions are subject to a penalty of up to $10,000 for each employee involved in the violation. 
  4. The FLSA prohibits the shipment of any goods in interstate commerce produced under violation of the minimum wage, overtime pay, child labour, or special minimum wage provisions.
  5. Averaging the working hours- If an employee is working 25 hours in a week and 55 hours in another week and if he is told that these two weeks on average result in 40 hours per week which isn’t under overtime pay. Then he/she can claim a violation under FLSA
  6. Permissible work hours for 14-15-year-old school-going students are:
  • 3 hours on a school day,
  • 18 hours in a school week,
  • 8 hours on a non-school day,
  • 40 hours in a non-school week.



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