Missouri Wage and Hour Law
Dolley Law, LLC regularly advises and represents clients in a wide variety of matters that arise under Missouri wage and hour laws. Our firm has a demonstrated history of success in all types of wage and hour suits under Missouri law, from large class actions to individual matters. We have the substantial knowledge and experience necessary for you to understand how to protect your rights and interests under the law.
Missouri Wage and Hour Law and the FLSA
Chapter 290 of the Missouri Revised Statutes sets forth Missouri’s wage and hour laws. These laws address a variety of issues, including but not limited to overtime, minimum wages, equal pay, and prevailing wages.
Like the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), Missouri law requires employers to pay overtime and minimum wages and provides individuals with a right to bring a private cause of action to recover unpaid wages. Both the FLSA and Missouri wage and hour law provide for the imposition of liquidated damages in addition to unpaid wage amounts, as well as the recovery of reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs, in the event an employee prevails in such an action against the employer. In fact, Missouri law specifically provides that its wage and hour law should be interpreted in accordance with the FLSA and its accompanying regulations, unless Missouri law states otherwise. See § 290.505.
While substantially similar, Missouri wage and hour law differs from the FLSA in several important respects. Some of these significant differences resulted from recent amendments that were effectuated through a 2018 ballot initiative known as “Proposition B.” For example, Proposition B not only increased the minimum wage in Missouri from $7.85 in 2018 to $8.60 in 2019, it also provides for the minimum wage to increase each subsequent year by $0.85, up through 2023, when it will be $12.00 per hour. See § 290.502.3 RSMo. Under the FLSA, the minimum wage rate is currently $7.25 an hour. 29 U.S.C. § 206(a)(1)(C).
Proposition B also amended Missouri wage and hour law to mandate an award of treble damages to an employee who prevails in an unpaid wage action. In particular, Section 290.527 provides that an employer who violates Missouri wage and hour laws “shall be liable to the employee affected for the full amount of the wage rate and an additional amount equal to twice the unpaid wages as liquidated damages, less any amount actually paid to the employee by the employer and for costs and such reasonable attorney fees as may be allowed by the court or jury.” See § 290.527 RSMo. These are just some of the differences between Missouri wage and hour law and the FLSA that are critical to understand to know your legal rights and duties.
Hiring an experienced and knowledgeable wage and hour attorney in Missouri, like the attorneys at our firm, is critical to understand in full how Missouri and federal law coincide.
Prevailing Wage Law
Chapter 290 contains a subchapter specific to wage rates on public works projects throughout the State of Missouri. § 290.210 et seq. RSMo. This subchapter is known as Missouri’s Prevailing Wage Law. It establishes minimum wage rates for certain occupations or types of work on public works projects, such as bridges, roads, and government buildings. Wage rates differ by county and type of work involved. The wage rates are incorporated into contracts awarded for public works projects. The Prevailing Wage Law in Missouri was recently amended to, among other things, limit its applicability to projects that are valued over $75,000. See § 290.230.5 RSMo. Our attorneys have handled many cases under Missouri’s Prevailing Wage Law and can help advise you regarding your rights and obligations thereunder.