According to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) employees are classified as either “exempt” or “non-exempt.” Exempt employees are those who are paid a salary rather than hourly wages. Non-exempt employees can receive overtime whereas exempt employees receive a set amount every pay period. In most cases, under the Federal minimum wage standards, exempt employees must make a minimum of $23,600 annually, which means exempt workers must make at least $455 per week.
As a general rule, exempt employees must perform specific types of jobs and tasks. Non-exempt employees who are paid hourly can be docked for hours not worked, whereas exempt employees cannot. It does not matter how many hours an exempt employee works, they will still receive the same salary payment, as long as they complete their required job tasks. Also, an exempt employee cannot have their pay reduced for taking longer to complete an assignment.
As long as an exempt employee works in their role they cannot receive a pay reduction. An exempt employee’s base pay cannot be docked if there is no work to be done, such as a slow period or closing. Same with partial days, if an exempt employee has partial day absences their pay cannot be lowered whereas a non-exempt worker can have their pay docked for any absences other than illness. However, exempt workers may have their base pay deducted for whole day absences, disciplinary actions and suspensions, or personal leave. In some instances salaried employees can even be docked for illness if they are working under a sick leave plan; for instance if they have used all of their sick days.
An exempt employee is entitled to receive their entire base salary under the FLSA, however exempt employees have no rights when it comes to overtime compensation. An exempt employee receives a fixed amount of pay annually, no matter how many hours they work. If an exempt employee sees deductions from their salary or is docked illegally, it’s important to seek out a labor lawyer. Labor lawyers can help in the event that an employee is wrongly classified in order for the employer to save money; by not paying overtime. Our labor law attorneys help employees to file a claim and sue their employer, when necessary, for bad classification and wrongful pay reduction.
If you have questions about exempt versus non-exempt classifications and salary calculations, call our employment attorney today and discuss your situation for free. At Consumer Action Law Group, our labor lawyers are available to help employees with questions, and most legal advice is free on the spot. Call our labor attorneys and ask your questions today, call 818-254-8413 and talk to a lawyer for free.