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Chinese Overtime

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  • Chinese Overtime

    I work in Virginia and am paid chinese overtime. Below are the job responsibilities of our store manager and rental manager. I am a rental manager and am wondering if you see anything in my job description that would validate them paying me chinese overtime.


    Position Responsibilities:
    Manages Rental Managers, Salesman, Shop Foreman and Drivers.
    Monitoring each through the Operational Reporting and Financial Reporting on each function.
    Is responsible for the overall direction, coordination, and evaluation of this unit.
    Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning, and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and disciplining employees; addressing complaints and resolving problems
    Assess daily the need for purchasing equipment through feedback from salesman, rental manager, customer feedback, supplier salesman and Marketing Department Product Managers.
    Assess, modify (if needed) and approve Sales Plan weekly and ensure that it is carried out appropriately.
    Ensure that Profit Center Yard, facility and staff are in a presentable state. This includes making sure that all employees are wearing clean, properly fitting company supplied uniforms.
    Ensure on-going compliance with all statutory requirements
    Review daily all contracts raised, i.e... Creations, amendments, suspensions and terminations.

    Rental Manager:

    Position Responsibilities:
    Negotiating the original order; maximizing rate and volume.
    Obtaining full details of customer; checking customer account or obtaining credit application for new customer.
    Finalizing details about when, where and what equipment is required.
    Checking availability of equipment with shop.
    Recording details of call in phone log.
    Processing cash rentals (complete identity checks, obtain prepayment and deposit if required, check to see if additional equipment is on rent to customer).
    Organizing transportation, i.e... Coordinating deliveries and collections, optimizing the use of transport.
    Accurate input of rental contracts and Administration of rental contracts.
    On and off rental dates.
    Conducting telesales and forwarding sales leads and incoming inquiries to Salesman.

  • #2

    What is "chinese" overtime? I haven't ever heard such a term.
    Lillian Connell

    Forum Moderator


    • #3
      I'm referring to variable rate overtime.


      • #4

        I'm still not sure what is meant by variable rate overtime. Federal law requires that overtime be paid at time and a half over 40 hours each week to persons classified as "non-exempt". There is an exception for those working under a Belo contract or another alternative workweek. Those people would be paid overtime at the rate of half-time.

        While it is not possible to determine whether or not you are exempt based on the information you provided, my preliminary opinion is that you are considered as an "exempt" employee and, therefore, are not entitled to overtime. You can read more about retail employees and overtime at:

        In addition, to determine whether you are exempt from overtime, you can refer to the following:
        Lillian Connell

        Forum Moderator


        • #5


          • #6
            Chinese Overtime

            "Chinese Overtime," as I understand it, applies when there is a fixed number of overtime hours in a typcial week (in a recent case, I had a client who had a regular 43 1/4 hour workweek) for salaried (non-exempt) employees. Using a Chinese Overtime system, they were permitted to roll the 3 1/4 hours into the employees' regular hourly rate. That is, they they didn't have to "pay overtime" on the first 3 1/4 hours over 40, because it was already included in the salary. This is permissible so long as the adjusted hourly rate doesn't dip below the applicable minimum wage. This also makes sense, as the employer could achieve the same result simply by adjusting the salary downward. In the situation I referenced, the employer didn't want to do that for political (read: union organizing) reasons. Of course, the employer is still required to pay time and a half on any hours worked in excess of 43 1/4, or whatever the baseline is. Chinese Overtime is permissible as long as the employees at issue are truly paid on a salary basis. However, it is confusing, and may lead to complaints. Indeed, in the case above, my client had to spend $5,000 to prove it was right.


            • #7
              Chinese overtime clarification

              My husband works for a bank in Oklahoma and is paid "Chinese overtime". This is not the same as the above client. His pay is based on a 40-hour work week, in which he performs clerical duties (nothing managerial) and anything over 40 hours a week he is paid according to some sort of formula used by the company (they say it is a formula supplied by the Labor Board), usually deducing a rate of pay under minimum wage for hours over 40. For example, on his last pay check (he is paid bi-monthly), he worked 3.89 hours of overtime for which he was paid $20.06, which averages out to about $5.15 per hour. His regular hourly pay is $10.85/hour! I am not sure how this is calculated. It seems highly illegal to me. Do you have any insight as to what is going on?


              • #8
                Chinese overtime is illegal

                It is LAW that you are paid at time and a half for any hour worked over (40) in a payweek. Chinese overtime is illegal. Just ask Lowe's, they had a class-action suit against them because of chinese overtime.

                If you work 50 hours a week and your regular rate is 8 dollars an hour, they are REQUIRED BY LAW to pay you as thus:

                40 x 8.00
                10 x 12.00

                Or they may do it as this:

                50 x 8.00
                10 x 4.00

                Both equations equal out to time and a half for pay. They are not allowed by law to pay you anything under time and a half for any hour worked past 40. It's in the posters, that they are also required by law to carry. No fine print, no fancy's right there. Don't let some fast lipped store manager try to out-talk you. If you are receiving some low pay for your overtime hours, you are entitled to something more.


                • #9
                  Fluctuating Work Weeks

                  The previous post is not exactly correct. Federal law permits overtime to be paid at half-time, rather than time and a half, under the fluctuating workweek calculations and belo contracts. You may read about them at:
                  Lillian Connell

                  Forum Moderator


                  • #10
                    So basically as long as you are working a regular scheduled workweek. I.e....your employer makes everyone's schedule, posts it, and you work it...then what I said earlier applies.