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More Than One Million Americans Eligible For Overtime Under Proposed New Labor Rule

The federal Department of Labor announced on March 7, 2019 a proposed new rule governing eligibility for overtime pay. The new rule would make more than one million American workers eligible for overtime. The federal labor department’s rules govern workplace compensation unless state law affords even greater pay/protections.

Current law provides that workers with a salary of at least $455 per week ($23,600) may be exempt from overtime pay if certain other requirements are satisfied (requirements focused on job duties and responsibility level). Employees who fall below that threshold must be paid overtime if they work more than 40 hours per week. That salary threshold was set in 2004.

The new labor department proposal raises the standard salary threshold to $679 per week (equivalent to $35,308 per year). That means that workers whose salary fell between the old threshold of $23,600 and the new level of $35,308 per year would now be eligible for overtime pay under the proposal. Police officers, fire fighters, paramedics, nurses, laborers including non-management production-line employees, and other categories of workers would keep their existing overtime protections.

President Obama’s administration previously attempted to set the salary/overtime pay threshold even higher than $679 per week. But that effort became mired in the federal courts, which blocked the change. The new rule proposed by the Trump’s labor department targets something of a mid-point between the 2004 threshold and that previously set by the Obama administration.

At Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC, our Houston overtime attorneys are committed to fighting for the rights of workers, no matter the size of the company they’re facing down. Since we first opened our doors, we have successfully fought for and secured the legal outcome our clients need. Call us at to learn more about what we can do for you, or fill out our online form to start out with a free case consultation.

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