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Understanding overtime exemptions in New York

If you work more than 40 hours a week in New York, you may very well expect that you would receive overtime pay for those extra hours. For most employees, this would be the case. 

However, there are a number of occupations and people exempt from state or federal overtime laws. If you work in these capacities, you may not receive extra pay for hours worked over 40 in a week. 

As discussed in this article, occupations that are exempt from both state and federal overtime laws include:

  • Taxi drivers
  • Camp counselors
  • Outside salespeople
  • Farm laborers
  • Religious order members
  • Some people working for charitable or religious institutions
  • Some sorority, fraternity, or academic association individuals
  • Federal, state or municipal government workers
  • Some interns, apprentices and volunteers
  • Casual, part-time babysitters
  • Executive employees who meet certain criteria
  • Professional employees who meet certain criteria
  • Administrative employees who meet certain criteria

If you work in these occupations, you likely will not be entitled to overtime pay.

There are some occupations that are exempt from federal overtime laws, but not state laws. In these cases, you may not receive 1 1/2 times your regular pay for overtime hours, but state laws require that you receive at least 1 1/2 times the minimum wage for overtime hours.

You might also be entitled to receive more than 1 1/2 times your regular pay for overtime hours if such a requirement appears in an employment contract. As such, it is crucial to review these documents closely to ensure you are receiving maximum compensation for your efforts.

Addressing unpaid overtime

If you are not exempt from overtime and you are still not receiving fair compensation, then you may want to explore your legal options. In some cases, such oversights are accidental; in other cases, they are intentional. In both situations, employees have the right to take action to ensure they receive the compensation to which they are entitled. 

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