Boss Told You That You Will Get Overtime Pay in the Future? You May Also Deserve Overtime Pay for the Past

Has your boss recently informed you that you are being transitioned from an exempt position in the company to a non-exempt position?  In other words, has your boss said you will get overtime pay for hours you work over 40 in the future even though you never got overtime pay in the past?

If that sounds familiar, then the next question you need to ask yourself is: should I have gotten overtime pay in the past? The answer may well be yes, even if your boss says no.  The attorneys at Migliaccio & Rathod LLP are here to help you figure it all out.

A common scheme that employers use to avoid paying overtime to their workers is to label them a “manager” even if their job duties are more like that of an hourly employee.  This is illegal.  Just because you may be given a fancy title like “assistant manager,” “shift manager,” “culinary manager,” “department manager,” or something similar does not mean that your boss can deny you overtime pay.  Typically, the only way you should not be receiving overtime pay for the hours worked over 40 as a “manager” is if your primary duty is truly managerial in nature – that is, tasks like hiring, firing, analyzing reports, and making high-level strategic decisions.  If that doesn’t sound like how you spend most days, then you may be ”misclassified” and entitled to overtime pay.

The reason that your boss may have recently told you that you will no longer be “exempt” is because the Department of Labor (DOL) just made it harder for employers to get away with their overtime avoidance scheme.  In December, new DOL regulations go into effect that say that to qualify as exempt from the overtime laws, certain employees will have to be paid an annual salary of at least $47,476.  Rather than keep you as exempt and bump up your pay to that amount, your company probably decided that they would be better off transitioning you to an hourly role.

You can read more about the new overtime rule at the DOL’s website.  If you have any questions about whether you should have been paid overtime, please contact us.