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Campus News
Your faculty and staff news since 1965
September 20, 2004
Volume 40, Number 2

Labor act changes affect overtime status

By Susan Carkeek

In August, the federal government enacted changes to regulations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The FLSA, which was originally adopted in 1938, is a lengthy piece of legislation that covers many aspects of employment. One of its most familiar pieces defines employee eligibility for overtime. Employees who are eligible for overtime are designated as “non-exempt.” Employees who are not eligible for overtime are described as “exempt.”

The recent changes in the FLSA included raising the minimum salary that determines whether an employee is exempt or non-exempt to $455 per week, or $23,660 annually. Employees who earn $455 per week or less now have non-exempt status.

The Department of Human Resources Compensation Office, in conjunction with University Counsel, has reviewed all jobs that pay less than the $23,660 per year. As a result of this review, a small group of classifications were changed from exempt to non-exempt status.

If your department or job title was affected, you have already been notified. If your unit has not been notified, that means that the exempt classifications within your department have passed this preliminary analysis.

However there are other changes to the definition of exempt and non-exempt in the revised regulations. Over the course of the next year, HR will be evaluating the impact of these changes on our job descriptions and will notify departments if other job titles will be affected. HR will continue to monitor these changes and notify you of any relevant changes.

In addition, the Department of Human Resources recently received a determination that graduate assistantships of all types are not considered employees as defined by the FLSA and therefore are not covered by these rules.

More information about the changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act is available on the HR Web site at http://www.unm.edu/~hr/whatsnew/.

If you have questions about a specific employee’s status, please contact your HR Consultant.