Employees who meet certain requirements under Texas labor laws are classified as either being “exempt” or “non-exempt” from receiving overtime pay. State overtime laws vary considerably by state; unlike California’s wage and hour laws, Texas overtime exemptions are the same as those provided under federal labor laws. Still, there is always room for confusion to those who don’t fully understand the laws that govern overtime.
Generally, exemption status is determined by three criteria: how you are paid, what your job duties and responsibilities are, and how much you are paid. Most people are under the misconception that if you are a salaried worker in Texas, then you are automatically exempt and cannot receive overtime. This is not the case. You can be a salaried employee that does not meet other requirements for exemption and therefore is non-exempt under both Texas and Federal wage and hour laws.
Three tests have to be met to properly classify an employee as being exempt. The first is that they are a salaried worker. But a salaried worker has to meet the other two tests as well and those are: they must be paid at least $455* per week (Update: $684/week as of 1/1/2020) or more, and they must perform exempt job duties. The most common job titles that are exempt from overtime pay are “executive”, “professional”, and “administrative”.
* The Department of Labor under the Obama Administration increased this salary amount to $913 per week effective 12/1/2016; however, this increase was blocked by a court ruling. The Trump Administration has instead only increased the minimum salary to $684 per week, effective 1/1/2020. The prior salary limit was $455/week. Please see this page for the latest updates.
For a complete list of all exemptions, you can visit the Department of Labor official website. If you have any questions regarding overtime in Texas, contact one of our overtime lawyers at the Lore Law Firm today for answers.