Obama Signs Memo to Strengthen Overtime Pay Rules

President Barack Obama signed a presidential memo this month directing the Dept. of Labor to come up with new overtime rules in order to make more workers eligible for time and a half pay. Obama has made it clear that he will bypass Congress when necessary to take action on economic initiatives. This is currently one of his most far-reaching executive actions this year even though new rules wouldn’t take effect most likely until 2015.

The new overtime pay rules would be focused towards workers on salary who earn more than $455/week and are ineligible for overtime due to management titles even though their actual job duties include few supervisory capacities. New regulations could change the definition of “supervisor” according to employment law. The salary/week limit separating workers who get paid overtime and those who don’t was last raised in 2004 by the Bush administration. Prior to 2004 it hadn’t changed since the 1970’s.  

Those in support of new overtime rules feel that millions of American workers could benefit from a change. Those who are against the change feel that increasing the number of workers eligible for time and a half pay for overtime would create a burden too heavy for small businesses and could potentially cost Americans jobs.  

Obama’s focus isn’t limited to overtime pay rules. This year, the President is also focused on federal minimum wage. He hopes to increase worker pay this year by calling on Congress to increase the minimum from $7.25 to $10.10.

For additional information on employment law, federal minimum wage and overtime regulations get in touch with the experts at Blumenthall, Nordrehaug & Bhowmik.