Has your boss asked you to do more for the same salary or less?

If so, you’re not alone.

For the past several years, during and after the Great Recession, many Jersey workers have been asked to work longer hours and take on additional responsibilities with no additional compensation. But now, a growing number of overtime lawsuits are being filed.

Lew Maltby, the President of the National Work Rights Institute in Princeton says, “What’s happening is that employees are finally waking up and realizing that they’re not being paid fair. It’s been years that employers have been refusing to pay overtime to people they know they’re legally obligated to pay it to. But they don’t pay it, and hope people aren’t smart enough to realize they’re being cheated.”

He says as long as people keep getting a raise every year even if it’s very small – most of them don’t ask a lot of questions.

“But when they’re asking you to work more hours for less money, and it starts to hurt people who start asking questions, they realize they’ve been entitled overtime all along – and they want it.”

Maltby points out the fact that most of us are carrying around a smart phone makes it harder to get away from our bosses and managers.

“Just because you’ve got a phone with you and your boss might call you, doesn’t mean you’re on the clock. There are more and more situations today where employers are obligated to pay overtime because they’ve got people on an electronic string.”

He adds if you think you should be getting overtime or you’re not sure, call the Department of Labor and find out.”

“It used to be you either worked in a factory and you knew you were entitled to overtime, or you’re an executive and you knew that you weren’t,” he says, “But now we have millions and millions of people who are in relatively low-level professional jobs, and they are told by the company – well you’re a professional – you’re not entitled to overtime. But they really are. It’s one of the most widespread forms of illegal behavior in corporate America. There are literally millions of employees who are entitled to overtime…their employers know they’re entitled to overtime – and their employers tell them they’re not and hope they don’t ever figure it out.”