You Can Assert Claims for Unpaid Overtime Without Records of Hours Worked

So you feel you may have a claim for unpaid wages, but then you think: “how do I prove it if I have no record of the hours I worked”? The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), 29 USC § 201, et. seq., which governs the payment of overtime and unpaid minimum wages across the United States, puts the burden of maintaining records of the hours employees work on the employer. The regulations interpreting the statute specifically require every employer to “make, keep, and preserve such records” of employees hours worked and the wages paid to them. 29 U.S.C. § 211(c); 29 C.F.R. § 516.2. An employer cannot transfer its recordkeeping obligation to the employee.

In cases where an employer’s records of an employee’s hours worked hours may be inaccurate, incomplete, or non-existent, an FLSA plaintiff may present a “good faith estimate” of the hours he or she worked, from which his or her damages can be determined. The burden then remains with the employer to provide evidence of the precise amount of work the employee performed, or evidence to negate the reasonableness of the evidence the Plaintiff asserted. Anderson v. Mt. Clemens Pottery Co., 328 U.S. 680 (1946). If the employer fails to produce such evidence, the court may then award damages to the employee based on the employee’s good faith estimate. Because of the remedial nature of the FLSA, Court’s are unwilling to relieve employers of their duty to maintain records of the hours employees work, and do not penalize employees for not maintaining such records.

Shavitz Law Group is here to help. If you feel you may have a claim for unpaid wages, but are concerned because you do not have records of the hours for which you are claiming damages, contact us today for a free consultation at (800) 616-4000, or visit us at for a free, no obligation review of your circumstances and consultation regarding your rights

Gregg Shavitz, Shavitz Law Group, 951 Yamato Rd Ste 285, Boca Raton, FL and 800 3rd Ave, Suite 2800, New York, NY. Lawyers licensed in states including FL, NY, NJ, and TX. The choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based on advertisements alone.
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