Pennsylvania Sets New Overtime Wage Rules


On October 3, 2020, Pennsylvania established a new overtime rule that will allow more workers to be eligible for overtime wages. The Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry’s Secretary, Jerry Oleksiak, stated in a press release that “the modernized regulation will expand eligibility for overtime to 143,000 people and strengthen overtime protections for up to 251,000 or more. This final rule ensures that employees who work overtime are fairly and fully compensated for their labor in accordance with the original intent of the Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act.”

Secretary Oleksiak also said that the new rule will be the first update to overtime regulations in over 40 years. The Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry has created a three-phase plan that will gradually increase the minimum salary for workers to receive overtime. As listed on the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry’s website, the first phase that was initiated on January 1, 2020 included workers who make $684 a week and $35,568 annually. October 3, 2021 will start the next phase consisting of people who make $780 a week and $40,560 a year. Finally, the last phase of people who make $875 weekly and $45,500 yearly will be eligible starting on October 3, 2022. Following the three stages, the Department plans to adjust the threshold every three years automatically.

There are other eligibility requirements that have not changed in order for people to receive overtime wages. Most hourly workers that work over 40 hours a week will be considered for overtime. In addition to employees that work more than 40 hours weekly, most workers who make less than the listed salary can also earn overtime payment. This requirement does not include the workers’ job duties. Finally, a majority of employees who are paid salary are eligible if they do not complete executive, administrative, or professional duties; the amount of money people make are not included in the requirement. However, there are other circumstances in which people are unable to receive overtime payments. For example, employees who are paid salary, make more than the listed annual salary, and preform executive, administrative, or professional duties will not be considered for overtime wages.

Although, there can be a few exceptions to the eligibility requirements to the overtime rules. The Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act Exemption establishes the rule for employers to set the minimum hourly pay for employees to at least $7.25 and the overtime pay rate to 1.5 time the person’s regular pay. In order to comply with the Act’s requirements, workers must pass certain tests about their work salary and tasks. It is important to note that the Act establishes an exemption from minimum wage and overtime wages for people who work in a bona fide execute, administrative, or professional capacity. The eligibility requirements for overtime and the Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act Exemption are listed on the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry’s website.

The new overtime regulations will allow more employees to receive overtime payments, as well as protections. It is required by law that employees receive the overtime benefits that they are eligible for. If companies fail to provide overtime payments, it may be illegal under wage and hours laws. At O’Connor Law, our attorneys can evaluate your claim to decide whether you qualify or are exempted from overtime payments. To find the information previously listed regarding the new overtime rule, visit Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry’s website.

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