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Mandatory Overtime: What You Need to Know About the Laws in Each State

September 22, 2022 - minute read

Every state has certain laws regarding mandatory overtime. It’s important to understand what the overtime laws in your state are to help you avoid issues with payroll and remain consistently compliant in your management practices. But first, let’s understand the basics of overtime.

What is Mandatory or Forced Overtime?

Mandatory overtime, often referred to as forced overtime, is defined as any hours above the standard workweek of 40 hours (in the U.S.) that the employer makes compulsory.

Federal Mandatory Overtime Laws

In general, federal mandatory overtime laws follow guidelines set by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The FLSA establishes the primary regulations for overtime pay affecting employees working in the private sector as well as in federal, state and local governments. The FLSA outlines the following guidance about overtime:

  • Nonexempt employees must receive overtime pay for hours worked over the 40-hour workweek.
  • Pay for overtime must be no less than 1.5 times the regular rate of pay.
  • There are no limits to the number of hours employees age 16 and older can work during a workweek other than the fact there are obviously a finite number of hours in a workweek.
  • Overtime pay is not required on weekends or holidays unless overtime is worked on those days.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Overtime

Can an Employer Force Employees to Work Overtime?

Current U.S. federal laws dictate how employers can require employees to work overtime. There is no limit to the maximum number of hours that an employer can require employees to work in a week, but they must pay a premium rate for overtime hours worked.

How Much Overtime Can an Employer Require?

The FLSA, which establishes the 40-hour workweek, currently does not have a maximum limit on the number of hours employers can require employees to work.

Can an Employee Refuse Overtime at Work?

In some states, employers can penalize employees who refuse to work despite a lack of threat to their safety and health as long as they receive 1.5 times their regular pay for every hour exceeding their workweek, as per the FLSA.

Can an Employee Be Fired for Refusing to Work Overtime?

In short, yes. Employers may penalize employees who refuse to work required overtime. The extent can vary by employer. However, there are no federal guidelines for this. In some cases, employees may be subject to discipline, reassignment, demotion or even discharge.

Can an Employer Make Employees Work Overtime Without Notice?

Employers can require nonexempt employees to work beyond their 40-hour workweek hours without any notice. This can include requiring employees to work another shift without any notice.

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Mandatory Overtime Per State

A majority of state laws are similar to federal laws in that they don’t put a restriction on the number of overtime hours employers can add to employee schedules. On the other hand, certain states have laws in place requiring periodic meal and rest breaks after employees have worked for a set number of consecutive hours.

Here’s a breakdown of how overtime laws work in all 50 states:

Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas
California Colorado Connecticut Delaware
District of Columbia Florida Georgia Hawaii
Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa
Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine
Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota
Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska
Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico
New York North Carolina North Dakota Ohio
Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania Rhode Island
South Carolina South Dakota Tennessee Texas
Utah Vermont Virginia Washington
West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming  

Alabama Overtime Laws

Alabama’s overtime laws follow the federal FLSA, which means employers are required to pay at least time and a half as “premium pay” for hours in excess of the traditional 40 per week to nonexempt employees. For more details about Alabama's mandatory overtime laws, visit the Federal Minimum Wage website.

Alaska Overtime Laws

Manufacturing or commerce employers with more than four employees on staff can provide overtime pay. Alaska’s overtime minimum wage is $15.51 per hour, which is typical time and a half pay as Alaska has a minimum wage of $10.34 per hour. For additional information about Alaska's mandatory overtime laws, visit the Federal Minimum Wage website.

Arizona Overtime Laws

Federal laws apply to Arizona’s mandatory overtime and cost-of-living adjustment. Nonexempt employers must pay their employees time and a half for all hours worked in excess of a 40-hour workweek. You can find out more information about Arizona’s overtime laws over at FindLaw.

Arkansas Overtime Laws

Arkansas labor laws for mandatory overtime pay state that overtime is applicable to employers with four or more employees who make at least a minimum wage of $9.25/hour. Employers are required to pay time and a half to these employees who work in excess of 40 hours in a workweek. Learn more about Arkansas’ mandatory overtime laws at the Arkansas Department of Labor website.

California Overtime Laws

California’s mandatory overtime laws also require nonexempt employees to receive pay of time and a half if they exceed 40 hours in a workweek. Still, employees can also earn double time after working over 12 hours in a single day or working over eight hours on the seventh day of the workweek. You can check out the California Department of Industrial Relations website for more information.

Colorado Overtime Laws

According to Colorado’s mandatory overtime laws, cost-of-living adjustments apply to minimum wage, which only applies to the food and beverage, retail, health and services industries. For more details about Colorado’s overtime laws, visit the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment website.

Connecticut Overtime Laws

Connecticut's mandatory overtime laws require overtime pay of time and a half, and if the federal minimum wage matches or exceeds the state’s, Connecticut’s minimum wage will increase by 0.5% above the new federal minimum wage. For more details about Connecticut’s overtime laws, visit the Connecticut Department of Labor website.

Delaware Overtime Laws

Delaware’s overtime laws also adhere to federal laws, but the state’s minimum wage will increase to match any increase in federal wage. To learn more about Delaware’s mandatory overtime laws, visit FindLaw.

District of Columbia Overtime Laws

The FLSA applies to District overtime laws, but if the federal minimum wage exceeds the state’s, the state minimum wage is required to increase by $1. For more information about Washington, D.C.’s overtime laws, visit the Office of the Attorney General’s website.

Florida Overtime Laws

Minimum wage is increased on an annual basis in Florida, based on adjustments for the cost of living. Federal overtime laws apply in this state when it comes to Florida’s labor laws and mandatory overtime.

Georgia Overtime Laws

Federal laws apply to Georgia’s overtime laws, and the federal minimum wage is required if the state’s wage is less than the federal minimum. FindLaw can provide more details about Georgia's mandatory overtime laws.

Hawaii Overtime Laws

In accordance with Hawaii’s overtime laws, employees guaranteed at least $2,000 a month are exempt from the state’s overtime and minimum wage laws. Employers who are covered by the FLSA are also exempt as long as the state’s minimum wage is lower than the federal minimum. Employees in the seasonal agricultural, sugar cane, dairy, livestock/poultry or horticultural processing industries are exempt from overtime pay. Visit the Federal Minimum Wage site for more information about Hawaii's mandatory overtime laws.

Idaho Overtime Laws

As with most other states, Idaho’s overtime laws adhere to the FLSA. If you would like to learn more about Idaho mandatory overtime laws, visit the FindLaw page.

Illinois Overtime Laws

Mandatory overtime is available for employers if they have four or more employees. Overtime pay is set at 1.5 times the regular minimum wage for Illinois. Learn more about Illinois’ mandatory overtime laws by visiting the Illinois Department of Labor site.

Indiana Overtime Laws

Indiana is yet another state that adheres to the FLSA, requiring employers to pay employees 1.5 times pay if they work over 40 hours a week. Learn more about Indiana’s mandatory overtime laws by visiting the Indiana Department of Labor site.

Iowa Overtime Laws

The FLSA also applies to Iowa’s overtime laws. The state’s minimum wage will increase to match the federal wage. Learn more about Iowa's mandatory overtime laws by visiting the Federal Minimum Wage website.

Kansas Overtime Laws

Employers covered by FLSA are exempt from state law, but overtime is typically required after employees work 46 hours in a workweek. Visit the Kansas Department of Labor website for more information about Kansas’ overtime laws.

Kentucky Overtime Laws

Kentucky overtime laws are also in line with the FLSA. Visit the Labor Cabinet website for more information about Kentucky's mandatory overtime laws.

Louisiana Overtime Laws

Federal overtime and wage rules apply to Louisiana overtime laws. You can get additional information about Louisiana’s mandatory overtime laws at the State Civil Service website.

Maine Overtime Laws

FLSA rules apply to Maine overtime laws, and an automatic increase of $1 is applied to the state minimum wage if the federal wage is higher. You can learn more about Maine's mandatory overtime laws at the Maine Department of Labor website.

Maryland Overtime Laws

While FLSA applies to Maryland’s overtime laws, if the federal minimum wage increases, the state’s wage will increase to match it. Nonhospital workers who care for the ill, mentally disabled or elderly will receive overtime pay after 48 hours. Seasonal agricultural workers can receive overtime after working over 60 hours in a workweek. Get more information about Maryland’s mandatory overtime laws at the Department of Labor, Licensing & Regulation website.

Massachusetts Overtime Laws

When it comes to wages, Massachusetts requires that most employees must be paid ⅕ times their regular hourly rate in overtime compensation, for all hours worked in excess of a 40-hour workweek. Some employees are exempt from overtime pay, like executives, professionals and some seasonal workers. Learn more about Massachusetts’ mandatory overtime at Mass.gov.

Michigan Overtime Laws

Michigan’s overtime laws dictate that overtime is applicable to employers with two or more employees on staff. For more information about Michigan's mandatory overtime laws, visit the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs website.

Minnesota Overtime Laws

Minnesota’s overtime laws allow employees to get overtime pay if they work for more than 48 hours in a workweek. Learn more about Minnesota's mandatory overtime at the Department of Labor and Industry website.

Mississippi Overtime Laws

Mississippi does not have its own overtime law. However, FLSA wage and overtime rules apply to Mississippi. You can find out more about Mississippi overtime laws by visiting the Federal Minimum Wage website.

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Missouri Overtime Laws

According to Missouri overtime laws, employees working for seasonal recreational businesses can receive overtime pay following 52 hours of work in a single workweek, in addition to FLSA rules. Learn more about Missouri mandatory overtime rules at the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations website.

Montana Overtime Laws

FLSA rules apply to Montana overtime, but employees working for seasonal recreational businesses will only be able to receive overtime pay after working for 48 hours. You can learn more about this by visiting the Department of Labor and Industry website.

Nebraska Overtime Laws

Overtime laws in Nebraska apply to employers with four or more employees. Otherwise, FLSA rules apply. Learn more when you visit the Nebraska Department of Labor website.

Nevada Overtime Laws

FLSA rules apply to Nevada's mandatory overtime laws. Learn more about Nevada overtime laws by visiting the Federal Minimum Wage website.

New Hampshire Overtime Laws

New Hampshire’s overtime laws adhere to FLSA rules. Visit the Department of Labor site for additional information about New Hampshire's mandatory overtime and wage laws.

New Jersey Overtime Laws

Typical FLSA rules apply to New Jersey’s overtime laws as well. You can learn more about New Jersey’s overtime laws at the Department of Labor and Workforce Development website.

New Mexico Overtime Laws

The FLSA is behind the New Mexico overtime laws, and New Mexico requires private employers to offer overtime. You can learn more about New Mexico’s overtime by visiting the Federal Minimum Wage website.

New York Overtime Laws

In New York, residential employees can earn overtime pay following 44 hours of work in a workweek. You can find out more about New York's mandatory overtime laws at the Department of Labor site.

North Carolina Overtime Laws

Most hourly employees in North Carolina are entitled to overtime pay for any hours worked over a 40-hour workweek. Employees who work for seasonal recreational businesses can receive overtime pay following 45 hours of work in a week. Learn more about North Carolina’s mandatory overtime laws at the N.C. Department of Labor website.

North Dakota Overtime Laws

FLSA rules apply to North Dakota’s overtime laws. Agricultural and domestic employees, teachers, mechanics, truck drivers and computer professionals earning more than $27.63 per hour are all exempt from overtime laws. Learn more about North Dakota’s overtime laws at OvertimeLaws.org.

Ohio Overtime Laws

Ohio has made recent changes to its overtime laws. While it adheres to FLSA rules, it excludes certain activities from overtime pay requirements, like traveling to and from worksites and performing certain routine tasks. Visit Vorys.com to learn more about mandatory overtime laws in Ohio.

Oklahoma Overtime Laws

Most hourly employees in Oklahoma can receive overtime pay following working 40 hours in a week, and the minimum wage is based on the current federal wage, which applies to employers with 10 or more employees or who make over $100,000 in annual gross sales. Find out more about Oklahoma overtime laws by visiting the Federal Minimum Wage website.

Oregon Overtime Laws

The minimum wage can adjust for inflation each year and, for certain industries, employees in Oregon can receive overtime pay after 10 extra hours of work. Learn more about Oregon's mandatory overtime laws by visiting Oregon.gov.

Pennsylvania Overtime Laws

According to mandatory overtime laws in Pennsylvania, employees are entitled to at least minimum wage and overtime pay of 1.5 times for any and all hours worked over 40 per week. However, overtime pay is not required for employees “engaged in a bona fide executive, administrative or professional capacity” who receive a salary rather than an hourly wage. Visit the Department of Labor & Industry website to learn more about mandatory overtime laws in Pennsylvania.

Rhode Island Overtime Laws

FLSA rules apply to Rhode Island’s overtime laws. Certain employees are exempt, like summer camp employees (where summer camps are not open for longer than six months), agricultural employees, police officers, many government employees and car and farm equipment salespeople. Learn more about Rhode Island overtime laws over at the RI Department of Labor and Training website.

South Carolina Overtime Laws

FLSA rules are in line with South Carolina’s overtime laws; it does not have any state-specific labor laws or overtime statutes. You can find out more about South Carolina's mandatory overtime laws over at the South Carolina Department of Administration website.

South Dakota Overtime Laws

South Dakota overtime laws adhere to the FLSA rules. Learn more about South Dakota's mandatory overtime by visiting the South Dakota Dept. of Labor & Regulation site.

Tennessee Overtime Laws

FLSA rules govern Tennessee’s overtime and wage laws. Visit the Federal Minimum Wage website for additional information about Tennessee's mandatory overtime laws.

Texas Overtime Laws

Federal wage and overtime laws also apply to Texas overtime laws and minimum wage. You can learn more about Texas mandatory overtime laws at the Texas Payroll and Personnel Resource website.

Utah Overtime Laws

Federal laws apply to Utah overtime laws and minimum wage. You can learn more about Utah's mandatory overtime laws when visiting the Utah Labor Commission website.

Vermont Overtime Laws

Overtime in Vermont is applicable to employers with at least two employees. For more details about Vermont’s overtime laws, visit the Vermont Department of Labor website.

Virginia Overtime Laws

Virginia is adherent to FLSA rules. It does not have any state-specific overtime labor laws. For more information about Virginia overtime laws, visit the Federal Minimum Wage website.

Washington Overtime Laws

Typically, FLSA rules apply to Washington’s overtime laws. Other overtime rates, like double-time pay, are not required by the state of Washington. However, there are some exceptions relating to specific public works projects. To learn more about Washington's mandatory overtime laws, visit the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries website.

West Virginia Overtime Laws

Overtime is applicable to employers with six or more employees working in a single organization in West Virginia. You can learn more by checking out the West Virginia Division of Labor State Overtime Requirements website.

Wisconsin Overtime Laws

FLSA overtime rules apply to Wisconsin’s overtime laws when it comes to employees in manufacturing, mechanical, beauty, retail, hotel, laundry, restaurant, phone, transportation and shipping. Exempt establishments include agriculture employees, domestic service employees, some nonprofit organizations and federal agencies. Learn more at the Department of Workforce Development website.

Wyoming Overtime Laws

FLSA overtime rules dictate Wyoming’s overtime laws. You can learn more about Wyoming's mandatory overtime laws and wages by visiting the Federal Minimum Wage website.

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