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Certain employees may soon be eligible for overtime wages

Under current federal regulations, salaried employees who make over a certain amount of money are not eligible for overtime. This means that many white-collar employees, such as managers, work extensive hours for which they do not get paid. In response to this, the Obama administration has proposed new amendments to federal labor regulations that would raise the salary limits and could make these employees eligible for overtime wages.

Texas readers will note that there are 4.7 million workers who are considered managers, yet do the same jobs as hourly employees, who make low enough wages to qualify. It is estimated that just 8 percent of the American workforce in management is eligible for overtime pay under the current regulations. These new changes would benefit the group of workers who, over the last several years, have seen their wages decrease while working longer hours. 

If these regulations are passed, it may be problematic if any of the new laws conflict with existing Texas labor and wage laws. Nevertheless, employees will certainly benefit from regulations that protect their rights, offer more time off or simply compensate fairly for hours worked. When there is a dispute over wages earned or an employee was intentionally misclassified by an employer, it is important to seek legal assistance. 

Wage and hour laws are complex, and it can be difficult to defend entitlements granted by law without the assistance of a lawyer who understands labor laws and regulations. Employees who must fight for overtime wages or the pay that they have earned should seek guidance regarding the possibility of initiating legal action. Employers should be held accountable for violating wage and hour laws and violating the rights of employees. 

Source: latimes.com, "Obama aims to expand overtime pay to more salaried workers", Chris Kirkham, June 30, 2015

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