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  • professional exemption in California

    Thanks, got my answer!
    Last edited by psych; 09-28-2009, 08:58 PM.

  • #2
    If a psychologist, practicing as one, is not a professional, I'm a bit lost at what might be. Yes, you make a case that you don't have total and complete control; but no one does. We all have someone to answer to.

    I think you are reaching to try to find a way to justify getting paid time and a half overtime. It's not going to happen. And, I might guess that your effective hourly rate is more than minimum wage, even allowing for time and a half for hours in excess of 40 a week.

    I think the lack of responses to your post earlier in the day is just that everyone is totally shocked by the position you are espousing.
    Please post questions on the forum rather than sending me a private message or email. That way others who have similar issues have access to the discussion.

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    • #3
      I don't know if being shocked has anything to do with the lack of responses. I am shocked at the rudeness of your comments. This person has every right to question their exempt status, as should everyone else who believes they may be improperly classified exempt.

      Being licensed or certified is clearly set forth as a requirement to be exempt while practicing medicine. Whether or not the fact that you are not licensed in and of itself will make you unsuitable for a professional exemption is unclear. Now, as for the argument about being paid enough to make up for the overtime if calculated at the minimum wage, it holds no water. The law is very clear that exempt employees must be paid a weekly salary of at least twice the minimum wage for full time employment (ie, $8 times 2 times 40 = $640)
      Last edited by mcarson87; 09-26-2009, 10:41 PM.
      "The most patriotic people in America are the working class" - Cecil Roberts - President UMWA

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Scott67 View Post
        I'm a bit lost
        thanks, got my answer.
        Last edited by psych; 09-28-2009, 08:58 PM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by mcarson87 View Post
          I don't know if being shocked has anything to do with the lack of responses. I am shocked at the rudeness of your comments. This person has every right to question their exempt status, as should everyone else who believes they may be improperly classified exempt.

          Being licensed or certified is clearly set forth as a requirement to be exempt while practicing medicine. Whether or not the fact that you are not licensed in and of itself will make you unsuitable for a professional exemption is unclear. Now, as for the argument about being paid enough to make up for the overtime if calculated at the minimum wage, it holds no water. The law is very clear that exempt employees must be paid a weekly salary of at least twice the minimum wage for full time employment (ie, $8 times 2 times 40 = $640)
          Thank you for your input and time. None of us can make heads or tails of this. I guess we will need to hire someone b/c there does not seem to be a clear cut answer.
          Last edited by psych; 09-27-2009, 04:18 AM. Reason: spelling

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          • #6
            You might instead just request an opinion letter from CA-DLSE. The problem is that why CA-DLSE makes a lot of information available, that information is finite in scope. When you first posted I took a look at the CA-DLSE manual and the opinion letters. I could not find anything definitive. It is very likely that you are not the first person in CA with a similar issue, meaning CA-DLSE (or the courts) would likely just check to see how it was decided before. Some of the factors you mention (such as the lack of a degree) support your position. Other factors like you having a boss that can give you orders do not. For example, health maintenance organizations are infamous for putting exactly the same sort of controls you talk about on doctors, who still seem to keep their Exempt status.

            While the general rules are easy to find and well understood, CA-DLSE (and the courts) could not care less what anyone on a website thinks, or what a hired lawyer thinks for that matter. They will care what prior rulings in similar matters decided, and the publicly available information does not cover that. There are paid research resources such as Lexus-Nexus that probably would have access to such information.

            If you hire a lawyer, make sure it is someone with the right specialty. Most lawyers are contract law, not labor law, and most labor law attorneys are not expert on Exempt classification issues.
            "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
            Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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