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  • Overtime

    I recently began working for a small private law firm in NY as a paralegal. I make $12 per hour and work 5 days a week from 11am - 7pm with one 30 minute lunch break. My employer told me that I would be paid for any overtime I work, however I now found out the overtime is not time and a half. I am only paid $12 per hour for any overtime worked. Is this legal?

    Thanks.

  • #2
    That depends on whether your job duties qualify you as exempt or non-exempt.

    If you are non-exempt, then if you work over 40 hours in a week, you have to be paid at time and a half for any hours over 40.

    If you are exempt, then your employer doesn't have to pay you overtime at all and not only is it legal for you to be paid at straight time, it's more than the law requires.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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    • #3
      My recollection is that there was a case a while back that determined that paralegals are nonexempt employees, but I can't put my finger on it. See here. If anything, I would guess the Administrative exemption would be the only one you MIGHT qualify under.
      http://www.dol.gov/esa/regs/complian...nistrative.htm
      I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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      • #4
        Patty, there have been several cases on this subject. The DOL has also written an opinion letter on the subject. Their very thorough analysis can be found here:
        http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/opinion/F...16_54_FLSA.pdf

        For those that don't want to read all 5 pages of the letter, they conclude that paralegals are generally non-exempt.

        In any case, it appears that this poster would be non-exempt anyway because she is not paid on a salary basis. The 541.304(d) exception that does not require the paying of a salary for the professional exemption is clearly limited to attorneys and doctors.
        Michael Tracy
        Attorney
        http://www.laborlawradio.com

        Disclaimer: The above response is a general statement of the law and should not be relied upon as legal advice. It only assumes the facts that are stated in the message. The above response does not serve to form an attorney-client relationship.

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        • #5
          Oops, I missed the hourly-paid part. Thanks, Michael.
          I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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          • #6
            0vertime

            Thanks for everyone's responses. So, it sounds like I am considered non-exempt and should be getting time and a half for any overtime worked - correct?

            Comment


            • #7
              That would be my take on it, yes.
              The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

              Comment

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