Filing a Wage and Hour Claim - Arkansas
Under Arkansas law, employers must pay employees at a rate of one and one-half the employee’s regular hourly wage for working more than 40 hours in one week.
Employees exempt under the FLSA, such as those engaged in administrative, professional, executive, agricultural or outside sales activities, are also exempt under Arkansas law. Additionally, the following occupations are exempt under Arkansas law:
- Federal employees
- Agricultural employees
- Independent contractors
- Summer camp employees
Public agencies may pay their employees with comp time instead of regular overtime compensation.
The state minimum wage in Arkansas is $9.25 per hour, which is more than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.
Generally, employers cannot use other costs of employment to decrease the minimum wage required. Employers cannot reduce the minimum wage by the cost to provide and maintain uniforms. Employers, however, can use tips and gratuities to reduce the minimum wage required to $2.63 per hour. Employers can decrease the minimum wage by the cost of meals and lodging by up to $0.30 per hour.
The following employees can be paid at a rate below the minimum wage:
- Disabled employees
- Full-time students
In 2017, Arkansas passed a law that stops any cities or counties in the state from passing their own minimum wage laws.
Arkansas does not have any meal or rest break requirements.
The State Department of Labor’s Wage Claims section is responsible for collection of unpaid wages, vacation, bonuses, commissions, sick and severance pay. The wage claim form is available online. There is no charge to the public for these services.
If you have a wage claim, do not delay in contacting the wage claims section. There are strict time limits in which wage claims must be filed.
As you might have other legal claims with deadlines, do not wait to file your claim until your time limit is close to expiring. It may be helpful to consult with an attorney prior to filing your claim, but it is not necessary to have an attorney to file your claim.
In Arkansas, employees can file a private lawsuit to recover unpaid wages plus attorney’s fees and court costs.