Top Five Wage and Hour Traps for Business

An overview of the most common payroll mistakes made by businesses.
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  • Lectures 26
  • Length 3 hours
  • Skill Level Intermediate Level
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
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    Available on iOS and Android
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About This Course

Published 3/2015 English

Course Description

This course is about how we pay employees. It is intended for business owners, operations managers, and human resource professionals that are involved with making critical decisions regarding whether and how much to pay employees. This course is beginner/intermediate level with an emphasis on highlighting common problems that typically create liability for the business.

No special materials are required for this course, which will include lectures and handouts describing important information concerning best practices in paying employees. The course is structured to provide extensive discussion and guidance on avoiding the top five wage and hour traps that businesses frequently experience.

The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 governs most of the employee pay practices in the United States. However, most of the applicable legal landscape is tenuously evolving. Furthermore, managers are frequently unsure of their specific payroll responsibilities and create liability for the organization. We will review developing regulatory activities that will continue to shape the legal landscape surrounding employment pay practices in the workplace for many years to come. In the meantime, employers need to assure managers are properly trained and understand the basics of wage and hour law.

Besides identifying the five most common traps that ensnare employers regarding payroll practices, we will also discuss regulatory enforcement activities that help employers understand and mitigate legal liability. This will include, the latest legal developments e.g. pending changes to the overtime exemption regulations.

What are the requirements?

  • There are no specific prerequisites for this course.

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Understand the proper types of deductions that can be taken from an employee's pay.
  • Identify and apply the correct overtime exemption to employees.
  • Avoid Major Business Liability From Paying Employees Improperly

Who is the target audience?

  • This course is designed for business owners, operations managers, human resources managers, and payroll personnel to help them identify and avoid common mistakes concerning how employees are paid.

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: Top Five Wage and Hour Traps for Businesses

This course introduction provides general information and history about the Fair Labor Standards Act, which is the federal law that governs how employees are to be paid for their time and efforts in the workplace. It provides context for understanding the Top Five Wage and Hour Traps that managers and businesses have to deal with from a legal perspective.


This course is for instructional use only and does not constitute legal advice.

Section 2: Mistake No. 5: Unlawful Paycheck Deductions

Understanding the rules for proper deductions is critical. What happens if an employee damages company property? What about when a cashier is short in her cash drawer? Under what circumstances can you deduct money advanced to an employee?

Section 3: Mistake No. 4: Improper Deductions from Salaried Exempt Employees

Understand the rules for taking deductions from salaried employees. Taking improper deductions from a salaried employee can jeopardize an FLSA exemption.

Section 4: Mistake No. 3: Misclassifying Employees as Exempt

This lecture provides an overview of what is necessary to claim an exemption from overtime under the FLSA.


Understand the tests applicable for claiming an Executive Exemption.

2 pages

This document will help you to understand the factors that must be met to claim an Executive Exemption.


Understand the tests applicable for claiming an Administrative Exemption.

2 pages

This document will help you to understand the factors that must be met to claim an Administrative Exemption.


This lecture will help you to understand the tests applicable for claiming an Professional Exemption.

2 pages

This document will help you to understand the factors that must be met to claim a Professional Exemption.


This lecture provides a review of several lesser-used overtime exemptions.

1 page

This document will help you to understand the factors that must be met to claim a Computer Employee Exemption.


In this lecture, we will discuss several strategies employers can use to avoid classification issues and mitigate potential litigation.

Section 5: Mistake No. 2: Improper Calculation of Overtime Pay

This lecture provides an overview of FLSA Overtime Basics, which provides a framework for further problem analysis.


This lecture describes whether and how to calculate overtime considering employees who spend time traveling, attending meetings and training sessions.

This lecture describes whether and how to calculate overtime considering employees who spend time on breaks, "on-call," and changing clothes necessary to perform the job function.
This lecture describes whether and how to calculate overtime considering employees who receive bonuses.

This lecture describes whether and how to calculate overtime considering employees who receive commissions.


This lecture describes whether and how to calculate overtime for employees paid by the piece or on salaries.

Section 6: Mistake No. 1: Inadequate Recordkeeping

Inadequate recordkeeping is the major mistake employers make with regard to compensating employees properly. Even if an employer has paid the employee appropriately, failing to document clearly can cost the company significant damages under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Section 7: California: A challenge for employers

California is unique in many ways. In the world of employment law, which includes law pertaining to wages, there are several important differences from federal law. This lecture will discuss important wage and hour issues specific to California businesses.


California wage and hour law definitions differ from the federal definitions in many ways, even to defined an employer or covered employer.

California: What is work?
California: Overtime Exemption Differences
Section 8: Thanks and Stay Tuned!

I hope you thought this was a valuable learning experience. Thanks for taking the course and CONGRATULATIONS on completing it!

Top Five Wage and Hour Traps for Businesses - Quiz
10 questions

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Instructor Biography

Mark Addington, Business Attorney

I am an attorney representing businesses and focusing on employment and intellectual property issues. I also teach a wide array of legal and business topics to graduate and undergraduate students at the University of Phoenix and Webster University.

Earlier in my career, I worked as a corporate trainer of management in both the hospitality and financial services industry prior to my legal career. As an attorney, I frequently present workshops and business training on business and employment law matters.

My legal practice focuses on representing businesses exclusively in Labor & Employment Law, Business Regulatory Compliance, Restrictive Covenants (Non-competition, Non-Solicitation, and Confidentiality), Wage & Hour, Privacy, Technology, Business Contracts, Intellectual Property and Mediation. I also represent and counsel businesses on discrimination law, disability law, employment contracts, employee benefits, union/management, minimum and overtime wages, sexual harassment, affirmative action, OSHA/safety, policy development, and regulatory compliance.

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