Exempt and Employment Law

What does Exempt and Employment Law mean?

The Fair Labor Standards Act was passed in 1938 by the United States Congress. For the first time, workers were guaranteed under federal law certain employment rights, specifically, the right to a national minimum wage, time and a half for overtime pay for certain jobs, and a forty hour work week.

The law did not apply to every worker but only to those who were engaged in interstate commerce or employed by a company or enterprise which engaged in the production of goods for commerce. Certain employers were also given exemption from coverage.

How Would I be Exempt from Getting Overtime?

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, certain employees were determined to be exempt from receiving overtime pay. Exempt employees, as defined by the law, do not have to be paid overtime for hours worked in excess of forty hours per week, but they must meet a salary threshold of $455/week ($23,660 annually), and they must meet certain job requirements.

Currently there are five primary exemption tests which are used to determine if a job position is exempt: Administrative Test, Executive Test, Computer Test, Outside Sales Test, and Professional Test. Job requirements and exemption from overtime Determining whether a specific position is exempt from overtime pay can be complicated.

As mentioned above, the Fair Labor and Standards Act provides five general categories for exemption. For example, if you are employed in an administrative position you must meet the salary requirements and you must perform “non-manual or office work which relates to the business operations of the employer or customers.” You must also exercise independent judgment and discretion in “matters of significance.”

If you are employed in outside sales you may be exempt if you meet the salary requirements, and you are “marketing or taking orders for a business by developing contracts with outside customers.” If you believe you are a non-exempt employee and you have not been paid overtime pay, you may be entitled to compensation. First, talk to the human resources department for information. If your employer refuses to help you or answer your questions you can seek additional legal assistance from a labor attorney.

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