Ohio Wage and Hour Investigations: What you need to know

Ohio's director of commerce has the authority to investigate wages paid in any occupation in the state and to enter a place of employment to inspect and copy wage-related records. The director will try to coordinate his or her inspection with any federal inspection of compliance according to provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) (OH Rev. Code Sec. 4111.04).
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Minimum wage violations. An employer is guilty of a fourth degree misdemeanor for:
• Hindering or delaying a wage investigation;
• Refusing to admit the director to a place of employment;
• Failing to meet recordkeeping requirements;
• Falsifying records;
• Refusing to make requested records available to the director; or
• Failing to post a summary of minimum wage provisions.
It is considered a third degree misdemeanor to:
• Discharge or discriminate against an employee for making a wage complaint, causing such a proceeding, or testifying or planning to testify in such a proceeding; or
• Pay or agree to pay less than the applicable wage rate (OH Rev. Code Sec. 4111.13 and OH Rev. Code Sec. 4111.99).
Wage discrimination. Employers are prohibited from discriminating in the payment of wages solely on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, or ancestry. A violation is a “minor” misdemeanor (OH Rev. Code Sec. 4111.99). In addition, an affected employee may sue to recover twice the difference between wages actually paid and wages that would have been otherwise paid, plus costs (OH Rev. Code Sec. 4111.17).
Employment of minors. Employers must keep specific records for each minor employed and must make those records available to the director for inspection and copying (OH Rev. Code Sec. 4109.11). Violation of these ...

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