If I drive a truck can I get paid overtime?
A common question that I get asked is “Are truck drivers entitled to overtime”? According to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) , employees who work more than 40 hours in a work week are entitled to overtime pay. However, FLSA exempts some employers from paying overtime wages if they and their employees meet certain qualifications. One category of employers exempt from paying overtime to certain of their employees are motor carriers or motor private carriers.
In order to be exempted from the overtime wage requirement, drivers and employers must both meet certain qualifications. First, to qualify as a Motor Carrier, the employer must be compensated for providing motor vehicle transportation. To qualify as a Private Motor Carrier, the employer must either be the owner, lessor or bailee of the property being transferred and the property is being transported for certain commercial purposes. A bailee is someone who is entrusted with the property of another.
If the employer qualifies as a motor carrier, in order to avoid paying employee drivers overtime wages based on the motor carrier exemption, drivers must perform the following duties:
Must be a driver or driver’s helper involved in activities that affect the safety of the motor vehicle. This includes a loader of the motor carrier or mechanic.
The motor vehicle is used for transporting good either interstate or at a terminal where the goods are picked up for transportation across state lines.
Certain exceptions apply depending on the weight of the motor vehicle, the number of passengers that it can carry at any one time and materials that the motor vehicle may be transporting, such as hazardous materials which are covered by other sections of FLSA.
The motor carrier exemption is a complicated area of the law. There are exceptions to exceptions. If you drive a truck are not getting paid overtime please call us or fill out the “contact us” form now and we will evaluate your case and answer any questions that you have.