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What Are Overtime Exemptions?

Overtime pay, also popularly known as “time and a half,” is intended to help compensate for any undue disruptions to your work-life balance, by paying you at a greater rate than usual. Although some roles are exempt from overtime pay, it’s a fundamental right for most workers in California.

Unfortunately, many employers go out of their way to avoid paying overtime – even when their workers are entitled to receive it. At Habbas & Associates, our wage and hour claims attorneys can help you understand your rights, and pursue a claim to get the compensation you deserve.

Understanding Overtime Exemptions

As a default, the California Labor Code dictates that all workers who take on more than 40 hours in a week should receive overtime pay for their efforts. For every hour past 8, you are entitled to receive more than 1.5 times your regular wages; for every hour beyond 12, the amount should be 2 times your usual rate. You can also get overtime on Sundays when you work 7 consecutive days in a week.

Of course, there are many people who are exempt from the overtime rule, including:

  • Workers who are classified as exempt. Anyone whose primary duties are administrative, executive, or professional in nature can be considered legally exempt from overtime, as long as they also make twice the minimum wage for full-time work. For more details, read our previous blog on non-exempt vs. exempt workers.
  • Outside salespersons. If you spend over half your work time selling items, services, or contracts away from the workplace, you do not qualify for overtime pay in California. You must also be over 18 years old.
  • Some union workers. Because some union employees have a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) to cover their wages, they may be exempt from overtime laws. This is only true if the CBA provides a rate that is 30% higher than minimum wage.
  • Other specific occupations as listed. From physicians to computer professionals to truck drivers, there are some specific occupations that do not qualify for overtime pay, so it’s important to review your situation with a qualified attorney.

How Do I Get My Unpaid Overtime?

If you do not fit into any of the exempt categories, your employer must pay you overtime. That’s why it’s crucial for California employers to classify their employees correctly, and ensure that they are obeying the law. When they fail to do so, you have the right to pursue back-pay – and it’s possible that your employer will be required to pay fines and penalties, too.

When you call Habbas & Associates, we’ll review your case for free. Well-versed in the specifics of overtime pay in the San Jose area, we can hold your employer accountable for any lapses in payment, and pursue your claim with unparalleled expertise and passion. Bringing over 175 years of combined experience, we know how to get the results you need in complex employment law cases.

Call (888) 387-4053 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation today!

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