How to Calculate Overtime: Free Tips, Guide & What You Should Know

how to calaculate overtime
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Calculating overtime pay for their employees is a routine duty for employers. You might also occasionally need to calculate overtime pay for hourly employees and employees on a monthly salary, especially if you’re in California. Here, you’ll learn all there is to know about how to calculate overtime pay rate, and common errors to avoid.

What Is Overtime Pay?

When an eligible employee works more than a certain number of hours in a given week, they are paid overtime. Employees typically receive it when they put in more time at work than the standard 40 hours per week. Although some workers are exempt based on their status, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which constantly updates and outlines regulations, requires workers to stay up to date with its requirements.

FLSA is a federal law establishing child labor standards, minimum wage, and overtime pay for full-time and part-time employees. The act mandates that employers pay qualified employees time and a half, or 1.5 times their base pay, for each hour worked in excess of 40 per week. This indicates that workers are paid at their standard rate or base salary for the first 40 hours and are paid at least 50% more for each additional hour.

How To Calculate Overtime

Every non-exempt worker is subject to overtime pay laws. A detailed list of deciding factors can be found in the FLSA or in their certified public accountant. Employers calculate overtime pay either weekly or daily. This depends on the status of the employee and whether they worked more than eight hours in a day. Here are simple steps on how to calculate overtime rate.

#1. Calculate the average hourly rate before overtime.

Start by calculating your typical hourly wage to determine your overtime pay. You can use your value, such as $12 per hour if you are an hourly worker. If you work for a salary, you can calculate your salary by adding up your weekly earnings and dividing it by the number of hours you work, which is 40.

#2. Multiply the hourly rate by 1.5.

The majority of employers pay “time and a half,” which is equivalent to 1.5 times your average hourly rate. You can multiply your hourly wage by 1.5 after determining it. Consider this:

$12 an hour times 1.5 equals $18 an hour.

#3. Multiply by the number of hours of overtime.

The amount from the previous step is multiplied by the number of hours you worked in overtime. This is crucial because the value can vary according to the week and the system an organization uses to track overtime. The following calculation can be used if you work five additional hours for overtime pay at a rate of $18 per hour:

$5 hours at an overtime rate equals $90.

#4. Multiply the outcome by the compensation from regular hours.

Your total pay from the non-overtime hours you worked can be increased once you have calculated your overtime percentage. If you are paid $12 per hour and put in 40 hours a week, you can add the $90 to the $480 you make.

How to Calculate the Overtime Rate

1.5 times the standard rate, or 150%, is the overtime rate. The employee’s standard hourly rate is all you need to figure out the overtime rate for an hourly worker. You can then calculate the overtime rate by multiplying their hourly rate by 1.5.

You can also take the standard hourly rate, divide it by two, and then multiply the result by their standard rate. If the hourly wage is $10, for instance, $5 is obtained by multiplying $10 by 2. This extra rate is $10 plus that $5, which comes to $15. Another illustration would be someone earning $20 per hour would be paid $30 for overtime ($20 x 1.5 = $30).

How To Calculate Overtime For Employees On Monthly Salary

When employees on a monthly salary work longer hours than what their contracts provide, you may occasionally need to calculate an overtime rate for them.

First of all, you must determine their equivalent hourly wage. To get an annual pay, for instance, increase a monthly income by 12. To calculate an employee’s annual income who receives two weeks of vacation, multiply their weekly wage by 50.

Divide the yearly salary by the 2,080 typical work hours in a year to get the hourly rate. To get the overtime rate, multiply this sum by 1.5. For instance, the overtime rate is computed as follows: $22.50 x 1.5 = 33.75 for an hourly rate of $22.50.

How To Calculate Overtime In California

According to California’s overtime laws, all nonexempt workers (including domestic workers) must be paid overtime at a rate of 1.5 times their usual rate of pay for any hours worked above 8 per day and 40 per week. All nonexempt employees must follow these overtime regulations. The majority of nonexempt workers are typically paid on an hourly basis. However, under California overtime law, non-exempt workers who are paid on a piece rate, daily rate, or salary basis are also covered.

Several exemptions exist from the California overtime legislation. When a group of employees is considered to be exempt, the overtime law does not apply to them. Every employee who does not comply with the conditions of a particular exemption is classified as non-exempt. Many exceptions to overtime legislation also exist. An “exception” is when overtime is paid to a certain class of employees in a way that is different from what was previously specified. Here’s how to calculate overtime pay in California

#1. Plan your workdays and weeks


California companies should specify the start time of the workday to accurately calculate overtime pay since nonexempt workers are entitled to overtime pay if they work longer than 8 hours in a workday.

A workday is any continuous period of 24 hours beginning at the same time each calendar day that is governed by California law. The start of the workday is flexible. For different kinds of employees, separate workdays may be established. If an employer doesn’t set a specific time for the workday to begin, it is assumed to last from 12:01 a.m. until midnight.

Daily overtime is paid in accordance with the number of hours worked on any given workday; averaging hours across two or more workdays is not permitted. A workday must be continuous and unmodified once it has been established by the employer unless there is a good business reason to alter it.


Employers should decide which workday the start of the workweek is so that overtime pay can be calculated correctly for nonexempt workers who work more than 40 hours in a workweek.

In accordance with California law, a workweek is any period of seven days that begins on the same day of the week, continues through any number of hours on any day, and is fixed and recurring. Different workweeks may be established by the company for various employees. However, once established, an employee’s workweek is fixed regardless of changes to their working schedule. Changes to an employee’s workweek are only permitted if they are meant to be permanent and are not intended to let the employer avoid paying overtime.

#2. Tally the employee’s hours worked during each workday and workweek.

According to California law, employees are required to record the start and stop times of their shifts, lunch breaks, and end times. The employer will calculate the number of hours worked each workday and per week using these time records.

#3. Calculate the daily overtime owed.

Nonexempt workers in California are required to be compensated for daily overtime in the following ways:

For all hours worked past 8 hours, up to and including 12 hours in a single workday, and for the first 8 hours of the seventh day of work in a row in a workweek, the employee will be paid at a rate of pay equal to one and a half times their regular rate of pay.

For all hours worked above 12 on a single weekday and over 8 on the seventh day of work in a row, the employee will be paid double their regular rate of pay.

#4. Calculate the amount of weekly overtime owed.

According to the weekly overtime regulation, overtime compensation is required to be given for any hours worked beyond 40 in a workweek at a rate of 1.5 times the ordinary rate of pay.

Simply total up the full workweek’s hours.

The worker had no weekly overtime hours that week if he or she worked 40 hours or fewer in that week. 38 hours overall, for instance, equals 0 hours of weekly overtime.

If an employee worked a workweek that exceeded 40 hours, the weekly overtime hours are computed as the total hours minus 40. 44 total hours Minus 40, for instance, equals 4 hours of weekly overtime that must be paid.

#5. Calculate daily and weekly overtime

Employers in California are required to calculate overtime for both daily and weekly overtime hours to guarantee that all overtime hours are compensated for each workweek. Employers are not required to pay overtime twice for the same number of hours worked as a result of this.

When daily overtime hours (all hours paid at 1.5 and 2x regular rate) equal or exceed weekly overtime hours, the employer is required to pay the employee in accordance with the daily overtime regulations for that week.

If the overall number of weekly overtime hours for that workweek is greater than the total number of daily overtime hours (both 1.5 and 2x regular rate), the employer is responsible for making sure that all weekly overtime hours are paid in addition to the daily overtime. It is essential to identify any extra time hours that are necessary to comply with daily overtime laws and pay them out accordingly.

Employers should always pay close attention to the daily overtime requirements since some hours may need to be paid at a double time while hours spent during weekly overtime are simply required to be paid at 1.5 times the regular rate, regardless of how many hours are worked above 40.

After calculating daily overtime, taking a look at the overall number of straight-time hours can help you assess whether or not weekly overtime would boost your results. There are no changes required to meet the weekly overtime criteria if the employer decides that the employee should be paid for 40 hours or less of straight time after adhering to the daily overtime regulations. A 1.5x regular rate should be added on top of the daily overtime already computed if the daily overtime results in more than 40 hours of straight time.

#6. Calculate the employee’s regular rate of pay

In accordance with California law, overtime pay is calculated using the employee’s hourly rate of pay. The employer will need to figure out the employee’s regular rate of pay after determining how many hours are overtime hours at either one and a half times or two times the employee’s regular rate of pay.

The regular rate is determined by dividing the entire pay for employment (apart from statutory exclusions) in any workweek by the total number of hours actually worked. Flat-rate bonus payments are an exception to this rule. According to the ruling by the California Supreme Court in Alvarado v. Dart Container Corporation of California, overtime pay related to an employer’s “flat-sum” bonus (i.e., a bonus amount that is not based on the number of hours an employee works) should be calculated by dividing the bonus amount by just the total number of non-overtime hours worked rather than by the total number of hours worked.

#7. Pay the employee any due overtime wages

The regularly scheduled payday of the payroll period that follows the one in which the overtime was earned is the deadline by which California law mandates that overtime wages be paid. Straight-time hours performed must be paid on the regular payday of the payroll period in which they were earned, even though the law enables delaying overtime pay by one payroll cycle.

What Is Overtime For $20 An Hour?

The overtime rate is 1.5 times the employee’s hourly wage. If an employee makes $20 per hour, their overtime rate is $20 x 1.5, or $30.

How Much Is Overtime For 18 An Hour?

If a worker earns $18 per hour, their overtime pay would be $18 x 1.5, or $27.

How Do You Calculate Overtime Hours Per Day?

Multiply the regular rate of compensation by 1.5, then multiply the amount by the total number of overtime hours worked, as per FLSA regulations.

How Do I Calculate My Pay Hours?

The total number of hours worked is first calculated by multiplying the weekly hours by the number of weeks in a year (52). Divide this amount by the annual salary next. For instance, if a person makes $50,000 a year and puts in 40 hours a week, their hourly rate is $50,000 / 2,080 (40 x 52) = $24.04


Payroll can be a burden, with issues like overtime, bonuses, and paying and reporting taxes. Keep in mind that it’s crucial to stay on top of all of your payroll obligations in real time. By doing this, you can prevent severe errors like underpaying employees or failing to comply with state laws, regardless of the challenging overtime pay calculations you must deal with.

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