Reporter Sues TribLocal; Claims She Wasn’t Paid Enough Overtime

Created in 1938, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FSLA) is an federal statute that establishes minimum wage, regulates the employment of minors, and sets standards for overtime pay. The FSLA is administered by the U.S. Department of Labor, and most public and private employers are required to adhere to it. However, there are exemptions to some rules, including the requirement that employers pay their employees 1 ½ times their normal hourly wage for any hours over 40 worked each week.


Reporter Sues TribLocal; Claims She Wasn’t Paid Enough Overtime

Some journalists may be exempt from overtime pay

In a case recently filed in the U.S. District Court in Chicago, a former reporter alleges that TribLocal didn’t pay her hours of overtime pay to which she’s entitled. According to The Chicago Tribune, Carolyn Rusin was employed as a staff reporter for TribLocal where she mainly covered school board and city meetings. Ms. Rusin says that she regularly worked 50 to 60 hour weeks, while she was only paid for 5 hours of overtime in 2011.

The main issue is at hand is whether or not Ms. Rusin’s employment constituted that of a “creative professional,” which would disqualify her from being paid overtime.  Rusin claims that the type of work she did for TribLocal didn’t qualify as that of a “creative professional.”  Rusin’s lawsuit is also seeking class-action status for all former and current TribLocal reporters who may also be entitled to unpaid overtime wages.

Employment law disputes often involve the interpreting of complex federal statutes, and require the assistance of an experienced Oak Brook employment law lawyer. If your Chicago business needs advice on an employment law issue, contact The Gierach Law Firm to discuss your situation with a top Oak Brook, Illinois employment law attorney.