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Work Matters

Understanding Overtime Pay

There are many common misconceptions from both an employee and employer perspective surrounding overtime pay in Ontario. If you find that you are working too long, or just want to ensure that your questions are answered, read on to get a better understanding.

What is Considered Overtime?

Throughout all non-unionized work in Ontario including full-time, part-time, temporary help or casual work, overtime begins when an employee works an excess of 44 hours a week. This is consistent for those who work based on salary and those who work on an hourly basis.

This is not to say that all jobs warrant overtime payment. There are scenarios where employees work jobs that are exempt from overtime pay.

There are also cases where the overtime threshold surpasses 44 hours in a work week. For example, this can include highway transport truck drivers who are paid overtime if they work in an excess of 60 hours. To find more information on this see ontario.ca and find answers under the ‘Jobs and employment’ section. Otherwise ensure that you bring up concerns with your current employer who may provide information.

Managers and supervisors are also not qualified for overtime pay according to Ontario law subject to the ’50 per cent rule’ (i.e. if at least 50 per cent of the hours worked is in a job category that is covered, the employee will qualify for overtime pay.

How Much is Overtime Pay?

The overtime rate in Ontario is 1½ times an employee’s regular rate of pay. Often this is referred to as ‘time and a half’. For instance, an individual making $17.00 an hour who works over 44 hours a week will receive $25.50 for each extra hour (1.5 x 17 = 25.5).

This is also consistent for workers on a fixed salary. If you are being paid at a fixed rate each week but find you are working over 44 hours, your pay must be adjusted to compensate for the extra hours that you have worked.

Again, depending on your workplace situation, further information can found on ontario.ca or simply bring up the issue with your employer if you feel that you are being unfairly compensated.

Solutions

If you are looking or planning to work overtime based on a heavy workload, it is important that you inform your employer ahead of time if possible. If you are unable to foresee any overtime work, it is still important to bring up these issues with an employer. Communication is key to resolving employment issues.

If you require further help or assistance in understanding your problem, do not hesitate to request a consultation or call us at 905-417-2227 to get your answers.

The above article is for general information purposes only, does not constitute legal advice or create a solicitor-client relationship. Because each case is unique and factually driven, if you have concerns with regard to the foregoing issues, please make an appointment with one of our lawyers or a qualified legal practitioner elsewhere. We represent clients in the Greater Toronto Area including Toronto, North York, Markham, Vaughan, Thornhill, Newmarket, Aurora, Brampton, Mississauga, Barrie, Ajax, Whitby, Pickering and Oshawa.