Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf is urging support for a proposed bill that will effectively qualify more workers for overtime pay. The proposal was initiated in 2016 and was originally written to update U.S. overtime pay legislation; Governor Wolf is attempting to push the new proposal through the State Labor Department. It would increase the minimum pay rates that specialized workers, management, administrative, and professional help must earn to be exempt from overtime pay. The increases would roll out incrementally over three years, ending in 2022 at around $48,000 a year, or $921 per week.
This proposal would affect close to 500,000 Pennsylvania workers; the current national limit is $455 a week. This means that employees can earn close to double their current wages before qualifying as an exempt employee. After 2022, the limit would be adjusted to reflect updated wage levels. The rule also clarifies which employees are managers, and what kind of work is classified as administrative or professional.
The Fair Labor Standards Act
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employers who require non-exempt employees to work overtime must give them premium pay. Compensation for working more than 40 hours during a workweek should equal one and one-half times an employee’s normal pay rate, at a minimum. Overtime pay applies to additional hours worked on any day of the week, including weekends and holidays. There are also specific regulations for bonus payments. This is usually arranged between the employee and employer and does not include double time pay.
FLSA regulations apply to a fixed employee workweek that recurs regularly during seven consecutive 24-hour periods. The workweek can start and end on any day of the week.
Proposal May Come in October 2018
The U.S. Department of Labor announced that this overtime rule proposal is on its fall agenda. They are considering setting a new minimum threshold for overtime pay or will simply eliminate the threshold. Congress also introduced bills in both houses for a $48,412 threshold. Both bills have co-sponsors. The new legislation came about after a federal district court judge overturned an FLSA law that made it mandatory for employers to pay overtime to workers earning less than $47,476 per year.
Bigger Cities, Higher Pay
Metropolitan areas such as Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, and Philadelphia have higher pay rates, so the proposal may not affect workers as much as those in less affluent areas. Businesses outside of the major cities typically pay their employees lower wages, so the bill would stand to benefit workers in these areas most.
Bucks County Employment Lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C. Successfully Pursue Wage and Hour Claims
If you have been unfairly denied overtime pay by your employer, we can help. Contact a Bucks County employment lawyer at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C. to discuss your legal options. We will fight for your rights and the compensation to which you are entitled. Call 215-569-1999 or complete our online contact form for a free consultation at our office, conveniently located in Philadelphia. We proudly serve clients from the surrounding areas, including Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, and Montgomery County.