What if a Salaried Non-Exempt Employee Works Less than 40 Hours?
Published on June 4th, 2023
Being a salaried non-exempt employee can be a bit confusing, especially when it comes to overtime pay. You would assume that since you are salaried, overtime pay is not in the cards for you. However, this is not always true. In fact, many salaried non-exempt employees are eligible for overtime pay if they work over 40 hours per week. But what happens if they work fewer than 40 hours? In this blog post, we’ll explore the implications of being a salaried non-exempt employee and working less than 40 hours per week.
First and foremost, let's define what a salaried non-exempt employee is. This type of employee is paid an annual salary but is still eligible for overtime pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) because their job duties don't fall under one of the exempt categories. In other words, they are not exempt from the FLSA's overtime requirements. This means that if they work more than 40 hours in a week, they are entitled to 1.5 times their hourly rate for every hour worked over 40. However, if they work fewer than 40 hours, they are not entitled to overtime pay.
But what if a salaried non-exempt employee consistently works fewer than 40 hours per week? Does this mean they never get overtime pay? According to the FLSA, an employer cannot offer overtime pay on an as-needed or case-by-case basis. Overtime must be paid whenever it is earned. This means that even if a salaried non-exempt employee works fewer than 40 hours one week, they may still be entitled to overtime pay if they work more than 40 hours in another week.
It's important to note that even if a salaried non-exempt employee works less than 40 hours per week, they still must be paid for all hours worked. This means that if they work 35 hours in a week, they are still entitled to their full salary for those 35 hours. However, if they consistently work fewer hours than their salaried position requires, an employer has the right to adjust their salary to reflect the actual amount of work performed.
It's also worth mentioning that an employer cannot require a salaried non-exempt employee to work more than 40 hours per week without offering overtime pay. It's illegal to ask an employee to work off the clock or to have them work over 40 hours and not pay them overtime. In addition, an employer cannot make an employee waive their rights to overtime pay. This means that if an employer asks an employee to sign a waiver stating that they won't receive overtime pay, it's not legally binding.
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In conclusion, being a salaried non-exempt employee can be a bit tricky when it comes to overtime pay. Although employees are not entitled to overtime pay if they work fewer than 40 hours in a week, they could still be eligible if they work more than 40 hours in another week. It's important for recruiters and hiring managers to understand the legal requirements surrounding salaried non-exempt employees to ensure that they are offering fair compensation and not violating any employment laws. By understanding the rules surrounding salaried non-exempt employees, everyone can ensure that workers are treated fairly and paid according to the law.
Radhika Sarraf is a content specialist and a woman of many passions who currently works at HireQuotient, a leading recruitment SaaS company. She is a versatile writer with experience in creating compelling articles, blogs, social media posts, and marketing collaterals.
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