Construction Workers

Construction Workers

Businesses involved in this industry are engaged in the activities of new construction or reconstruction. The repair or renovation of existing commercial and/or residential structures, as well as roadway and bridge construction, are also a part of this industry. The following work activities are included in the construction industry: painting, sandblasting, tuckpointing, roofing, guttering, spouting, water well drilling, installation of flooring and landscaping.

Typical Problems

(1) Failure to record all hours worked to include time spent working before or after the shift. (2) Shorting of hours by using terms such as down time or rain delay. (3) Failure to compensate for meal breaks where the employee is not completely relieved of all duties to enjoy uninterrupted time for the meal. (4) “Banking” of overtime hours or payment of overtime in the form of “comp time.” (5) Failure to combine the hours worked for overtime purposes by an employee in more than one job classification for the same employer within the same workweek. (6) Failure to segregate and pay overtime hours on a workweek basis when employees are paid on a bi-weekly or semi-monthly basis. (7) Failure to pay for travel from shop to work-site and back.


A business in the construction industry must have two or more employees and have an annual gross sales volume of $500,000 or more to be subject to the FLSA. Individual coverage applies to employees whose work regularly involves them in commerce between states (“interstate commerce”). Any person who works on or otherwise handles goods that are moving in interstate commerce or who works on the expansion of existing facilities of commerce is individually subject to the protection of the FLSA and the current minimum wage and overtime pay requirements, regardless of the sales volume of the employer. Other persons, such as guards, janitors, and maintenance employees who perform duties which are closely related and directly essential to such interstate activities are also covered by the FLSA.


Employers who are covered under the FLSA must comply with the record keeping requirements of Regulations, 29 CFR Part 516.

Also, an employer must establish a workweek (7 consecutive 24-hour periods) and must pay overtime when hours worked exceed 40 in the workweek. The practice of paying overtime only after 80 hours in a bi-weekly pay period is illegal since each workweek must stand alone.

For non-exempt employees, covered employers must pay the Federal minimum wage and time and one half the regular rate of pay for time worked over 40 hours in a workweek. These businesses must also be aware of the potential for violations of the Child Labor requirements of the FLSA. This is especially critical due to the dangerous nature of both the work performed and the tools used in this industry.

If the employer performs work on a federally financed project or a project in which the Federal government has provided assistance in financing the project, a different and somewhat stricter set of labor standards applies. Typically this would require that employees performing on such contracts be paid a “prevailing wage rate.”