FAQ Overtime Pay

What is the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”)?

The FLSA is a federal statute that requires employers to pay at least the minimum wage, pay overtime, comply with child labor laws and comply with record keeping requirements. 

When is overtime pay due?

For covered, non-exempt employees, the FLSA requires overtime pay at a rate of not less than one and one-half times (“time and a half”) an employee's regular rate of pay after 40 hours of work in a workweek.

What is the difference between exempt and non-exempt employees?

Generally, exempt employees are paid a predetermined amount of money for work performed, regardless of the number of hours worked, and are not eligible for overtime pay.  Non-exempt employees, on the other hand, are paid according to the number of hours worked, and are therefore eligible for overtime pay.  However, some employers may classify an employee as “exempt,” when in fact his/her job duties qualify him/her for overtime pay.  Determining whether you are exempt or non-exempt is fact specific.  Your title, for example, “Supervisor,” does not automatically make you exempt; your specific job duties determine your status, and it is common for employers to misclassify employees as “exempt” and not pay overtime wages.

What types of employees are considered exempt from the FLSA?

Generally, employees within Executive, Administrative, and Professional positions are considered exempt from the FLSA.

What is the Executive exemption to the FLSA?

Generally, job duties are exempt Executive job duties if the employee: (1) regularly supervises two or more other employees, and also is, a practical matter (2) "in charge" of a unit or subunit of the organization when on duty.  However, your title does not define your status.  An employee who holds a title implying that he or she is in charge, but who does not in fact supervise two or more employees or who is not really in charge when on duty is not performing Executive job duties, and may be eligible for overtime pay.

What is the Administrative exemption to the FLSA?

The most difficult of the exempt job classifications is the Administrative exemption.  Employees are performing exempt Administrative job duties if they do: (1) non-manual or office work which (2) supports the overall business operations of the employer, and which (3) involves exercising independent judgment and discretion on important matters.

To be exempt, the work must be at a relatively high-level, involve independent judgment and discretion, and be important to the overall operation of the enterprise.  Clerical work may be administrative, but it is not exempt.  Most secretaries, for example, perform administrative work, but their jobs are not usually exempt.

What is the Professional exemption to the FLSA?

Employees are performing exempt Professional job duties if their work involves the application of advanced, usually specialized, learning or credentials of the type commonly associated with the "traditional learned professions" such as medicine, law, accounting or engineering.

How many hours is full-time employment? How many hours is part-time employment?

The FLSA does not define full-time employment or part-time employment.  This is a matter generally to be determined by the employer.  Whether an employee is considered full-time or part-time does not change the application of the FLSA.

When is double time due?

The FLSA has no requirement for double time pay.  This is a matter of agreement between an employer and employee.

Is extra pay required for weekend or night work?

Extra pay for working weekends or nights is a matter of agreement between the employer and the employee. The FLSA does not require extra pay for weekend or night work. However, the FLSA does require that covered, nonexempt workers be paid not less than time and one-half the employee's regular rate for time worked over 40 hours in a workweek.

How many hours per day or per week can an employee work?

The FLSA does not limit the number of hours per day or per week that employees aged 16 years and older can be required to work. 




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