IfI was denied overtime due to light dutybut a co-worker is not so denied, is this discrimination?

UPDATED: Feb 21, 2012

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IfI was denied overtime due to light dutybut a co-worker is not so denied, is this discrimination?

I had shoulder surgery and when I returned to work on light duty I was still running my machine but not allowed to work overtime. However, 2 co-workers, who are from the same country as the owners, are on light duty but allowed to work overtime. When I asked about it I was told that since they where hurt on the job they where allowed to work the overtime; one just runs a tow motor the other pushes a broom. I was running my machine the first day back and Ihad equal to less restrictions. This really seems like discrimination to me because I wasn’t allowed to make the extra money; they where and still are.still

Asked on February 21, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Ohio


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Employers are not required to treat all employees the same, unless the reason for the different treatment is discrimination against one of a small number of specifically protected categories, such as a person's race, religion, age over 40, disability (which generally means treating the disabled differently than the non-disabled--and not allowing one disabled person overtime, but not another), or sex/gender. Also, while employers must pay overtime to nonexempt employees when they work overtime, the employer is generally free to schedule overtime or not, and is not required to make overtime available to all employees.

Therefore, from what you write, unless you feel you are being treated differently or worse due to you race, religion, age over 40, etc., it is most likely that the employer does not have to give you the opportunity for overtime. It's not the employer's responsibility to give all its employees the chance to make extra money, unfortunately.

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