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New Overtime Laws: Which Employees Are Most Affected?


The new U.S. Department of Labor overtime rules which go into effect in December 2016 will have more of an impact on some industries and certain workers than that of others. In fact, across California, about 146,000 employees will be affected by the new Federal overtime laws.

But will you or your workplace feel the impact of the rules more than others? This article will help you understand how these new Federal overtime laws affect employees in California and throughout the country.

How the New Federal Overtime Laws Affect Employees

Who will be affected by the new federal overtime rules?

While workers in almost any industry could be subject to the new overtime rules, certain industries could be more impacted. Industries such as construction, agriculture, and hospitality will be significantly impacted by the new provisions. Employees who are affected by the law will either receive more pay through overtime wages or more leisure time due to fewer work hours.

Almost forty percent of workers in the agriculture industry may gain from the new rules. This is almost as great a proportion of employees who work in the hospitality industry. In addition to that, about one-third of construction workers across the country will also gain from the new overtime rules.

Individuals who are going to be most affected are workers who make less than the $47,476 minimum, but more than the $23,660 minimum under federal law and more than the current California state minimum. These employees will now automatically qualify for overtime pay of time-and-a-half if they work more than forty hours in a single workweek once the new law goes into effect.

Will the new overtime laws affect an employee who is paid a salary?

If an employee is paid a salary, it doesn't necessarily mean that the employee is automatically exempt from overtime. The Department of Labor has certain white collar worker exemptions that are based on specific tasks and duties, but they do not apply to many workers; just employees at salary levels both above and below the new salary limit. Only workers who earn above the highly compensated employee salary limit are exempt from the overtime rules automatically. Currently, the highly compensated employee salary limit is $100,000, but it will jump to $134,004 when the new Department of Labor overtime rule goes into effect in December.

Overtime Laws in California: Resources

  • California Overtime Laws: What Exempt and Nonexempt Employees Should Know
  • State of California Department of Industrial Relations: Overtime
  • State of California Department of Industrial Relations: Exemptions from Overtime Laws
  • United States Department of Labor: FLSA

If you have more questions about employment law, such as your rights regarding Federal or California overtime laws, you should contact our passionate Los Angeles employment attorneys at Hennig Ruiz for a free consultation today.

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