Are you a legal professional? Visit our professional site

Florida Wage and Hour Laws

Created by FindLaw's team of legal writers and editors.

Wage and hour laws refer to the minimum wage an employer must pay, when an employee is entitled to overtime, required breaks, and other such regulations. The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and state law provide protections for workers that guarantee a minimum wage and overtime hours.

Workers are classified into three different categories for the purposes of determining which wage and hour laws apply to them:

  1. Independent contractors;
  2. Exempt employees; and
  3. Non-exempt employees.

Independent contractors aren't considered "employees" and therefore don't have a right to wage and hour protections prescribed by law. The classification of other workers into exempt and non-exempt employees determines whether an employee is exempt from overtime laws as exempt employees won't be compensated for hours worked in addition to a 40-hour week. Exempt employees are classified by their job descriptions and are usually professionals, executives, administrative, and computer employees who can control the number of hours worked and other working conditions.

Florida has no separate statute for overtime and breaks. It follows the federal law requiring payment of one and a half times the regular rate for all hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week. Florida law requires that overtime be paid for hours worked in excess of 10 hours per day.

Florida law also doesn't require rest periods or meal breaks and relies on federal law to regulate these areas. Under federal law breaks aren't required, but if given they must be paid if under 20 minutes. Federal law states that meal breaks of 30 minutes or more can be unpaid, if employees are relieved of all duties.

Florida has a minimum wage of $8.46 an hour, which is higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. Florida's minimum wage is adjusted yearly per state law.

Summary of Florida Wage and Hour Laws

Although statutes are often written by lawyers and difficult to follow, it's important for non-attorneys to understand the law since it applies to them too. That is why we've prepared the following plain language summary of Florida wage and hour laws.

Statutes

Florida General Labor Regulations; Chapter 448:

Florida Constitution, Art X, Section 24 (minimum wage)

Minimum Wage

$8.46 / hr (adjusted annually per rate of inflation)

Overtime

One and half times regular rate. Applies to hours worked in excess of 10 hours per day or to hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week.

Certain workers, such as agriculture workers, are exempt from overtime pay requirements.

Meals and Breaks

Breaks aren't required under Florida law, but federal law states that if breaks of less than 20 minutes are given, they must be paid.

Meal breaks of 30 minutes or more can be unpaid if the employee is relieved of all duties.

Leave

Employers aren't required to offer pay for vacation, holiday or sick leave.

Domestic violence leave (Section 741.313): an employer is required to permit an employee up to 3 days leave, if the employee or family member is a victim of domestic violence or sexual violence. This leave can be without pay.

Florida is subject to the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.

Severance Pay

Florida law doesn't require severance pay.

Agency

U.S. Department of Labor

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Florida Wage and Hour Laws: Related Resources

Get Expert Legal Help With Your Florida Wage and Hour Concerns

Disputes involving wages or hours worked are among the most common in employment law. If you believe your employer hasn't paid you what you're owed, you've been denied a meal break, or have other concerns, it's in your best interests to act quickly. Find an experienced Florida employment attorney today and get some peace of mind.

Next Steps: Search for a Local Attorney

Contact a qualified attorney.