While the summer of 2016 draws near, we are nearly one year removed from the historic increase of the federal minimum wage. Since that time many states and jurisdictions have increased the working minimum wage (some jurisdictions to $15.00/hr), but the troubles suffered by low-level salaried employees have largely been ignored. Because of this, some managers in retail establishments and restaurants made less per hour than their hourly counterparts because they were barred from collecting overtime pay.
As we noted in a prior post, this change was coming. The U.S. Department of Labor finalized its plan that would allow more salaried employees to receive overtime pay. Essentially, the threshold for salaried employees to receive overtime pay will increase to $47,476. The previous threshold was $23,336.
Nearly five million workers will be affected by this change. As we alluded to earlier, managers and other administrative assistants toiling 50 to 70 hours per week. Moreover, the number of workers eligible for overtime hours has fallen from 62 percent in 1975 to merely 7 percent today. The new rule may raise the percentage of eligible workers to 35 percent.
For some employees, it means that they may have to be reclassified in order to take advantage of the monetary benefits. The new rule is supposed to take effect on December 1. So it remains to be seen how employers will react to this change.
If you have questions about you this will affect you as an employee, an experienced lawyer can advise you.