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What employees are exempt under the FLSA?

As an employee, you're at least somewhat familiar with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which governs things like overtime pay, child labor and minimum wage. Making sure your employer is compliant with the FLSA is extremely important but the ins and outs of the law can make it confusing. Because of that, you might be wondering if you're exempt from it. So let's clear it up some of the basics.

The employees who aren't exempt are fairly cut and dry. In fact, most employees who work an hourly wage fall under the FLSA. So which ones are exempt? That's where it gets little more difficult. An exempt employee is one that is salaried and makes at least $455 per week and a minimum of $23,600 every year. They must also perform one of these particular job duties:

  • A supervisor whose primary job as a manager is overseeing at least two employees and has control over hiring, firing and assignments.
  • Is a professional in a highly-skilled trade such as teacher, nurse, physician or architect.
  • An employee who performs administrative duties like payroll, accounting, human resources or public relations.

Of course, this is just a basic overview and even these descriptions leave a lot of room for interpretation. That's why it's often a good idea to seek the counsel of an employment law attorney. He or she can offer guidance and advice and help you determine if your employer violated some of the terms of the FLSA in your wages or overtime.

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