Can Employers Set Hour Limitations for Their Workers?


The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) establishes regulations for overtime pay rates, hours, and other terms that govern workers’ rights. The law ensures that employers do not unfairly treat their workers. Within the FLSA guidelines, there are some areas in which employers can create their own regulations.

One area that the FLSA does not cover is the number of hours that an employee can work in a week. There is no hour limit under FLSA, however, employers can establish their own regulations for their workers.

FLSA Regulations for Hours Worked

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, there is no limit to the number of hours an employee can work in a day or the number of consecutive days they can work in a week. The law does not require employers to cut off the hours an employee can work and orders no penalties if employees work over a certain number of hours in a day or week. The FLSA only defines a typical work week (40 hours), and requires that employees who work overtime are properly compensated.

Overtime Pay Regulations

Although there are no hour limitations under the FLSA, the law does establish regulations for payment once employees reach a certain amount of time worked. A person that works over 40 hours in one week, and is considered as a non-exempt worker, must be paid wages equivalent to 1.5 times their typical wages for the overtime hours.

Overtime pay is an incentive for many employees to work longer days. The possibility of paying out overtime wages is also an incentive for employers to limit the amount of overtime that their employees can work. For this reason, many employers cap the number of overtime hours that their employees are permitted to work or completely prohibit their employees from working overtime at all. This is legal — there is no law that says employees are permitted to work as much as they would like in order to earn overtime pay. The lack of a limitation for hours worked under the FLSA does not mean that employers cannot limit work times for their employees. However, it is important to remember that if you have worked over 40 hours and have not been paid overtime wages, that is a wage and hour violation.

The lawyers of Donati Law, PLLC can represent you if your employer has committed a wage and hour violation. We are available to discuss your case.

If you are interested in speaking with our legal team, send us a message or call (901) 209-5500 for a free consultation with our attorneys.

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