How do I know if I am exempt from overtime pay?

As of 2023, to be exempt from overtime pay, you must make at least $62,400.00 per year or $5166.66 per month. To be classified as an exempt employee, your salary must be at least twice California’s minimum wage for full-time employment. 

Author: Brad Nakase, Attorney

Email  |  Call (888) 600-8654

Exempt employees are exempt from California overtime pay. Therefore, if you are truly an exempt employee, your employer does not need to pay you for overtime work which is time and a half. Overtime work is any time that is more than eight hours in a workday or more than 40 hours in a workweek. A 40-hour work week is considered full-time making eight hours per day.  All hours worked after these eight hours per day or 40 hours per week are considered overtime.

In this article, our employment lawyer in San Diego discusses how to know if you’re exempt from overtime pay as follows:

What does exempt mean for overtime pay?

Employers are not required to pay overtime to employees who are properly classified as exempt. Exempt employees do not receive overtime pay and do not qualify for minimum wage. An “exemption” means that the overtime law does not apply to a particular classification of employees. If employees are non-exempt, it means they are entitled to minimum wage and overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours per week. Exempt employees who are exempt from overtime pay do not receive overtime pay and do not qualify for minimum wage.

How do you tell if you’re exempt or nonexempt?

Exempt vs Non-Exempt Employee. The difference exempt vs non-exempt employee status  is an employee’s eligibility for overtime pay. If employees are non-exempt, it means they are entitled to minimum wage and overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours per week.To determine whether an employee is entitled to overtime, it must first be decided what category the employee falls into, exempt or non-exempt. Non-exempt employees usually receive more benefits than that exempt employees, including overtime.

In California, Non-exempt employees have the right to (1) overtime when working over 40 hours; (2) right to be paid minimum wage (currently not less than $10); and (3) right to certain breaks including lunch/dinner. However, this usually applies to non-exempt employees.

To be exempt from overtime pay in California, the employee must meet certain requirements. These include all of the following:

  1. Making at least twice California’s minimum wage. Employees may be considered exempt if they are paid a salary, earn at least $62,400.00 per year, and perform work duties of one of the exempt professions (executive, manager, supervisor, etc.)

  2. Can make independent judgments. An exempt employee must be able to independently determine a course of action over matters of significance, free from the supervisor’s direction.

  3. Work in an exempt employee role. Common categories of exempt employees include administrative employees, licensed professionals, outside sales employees, computer employees, and executive employees.

Therefore, to be an exempt employee and exempt from overtime pay, you must work in an exempt role, make independent judgments, and make at least $62,400 annually in 2023. You are entitled to overtime pay as a non-exempt employee if you make less than $62,400 per year, cannot make an independent judgment, or do not work in any exempt role category. If you’re an non-exempt employee and was not paid for overtime, contact our employment attorney to determine how much overtime pay you’re owed. We can help you get that money without any upfront money to pay an attorney.

Please tell us your story:

0 + 4 = ?

See all blogs: Business | Corporate | Employment



Navigate the world of HR KPIs to measure and enhance your human resources management effectiveness and align with organizational goals. Understand the vital role of KPIs in achieving fair compensation and strategic HR outcomes.
Job evaluation in HRM

Job evaluation in HRM

Delve into the essentials of job evaluation in HRM, offering insights into its importance for pay equity and the top methods used. Understand how this systematic process helps determine fair compensation and supports equal, uniform pay structures.
HR Classes

HR Classes

Kickstart your HR career with the best beginner courses, offering foundational knowledge and practical skills for success in the field. Navigate the array of options for online certifications and real-world seminars to enhance your HR expertise.
Employee Value Proposition

Employee Value Proposition

Unlock the secrets to a compelling Employee Value Proposition (EVP) that attracts and retains top talent, boosting your employer brand. Dive into how an effective EVP enhances company culture, employee engagement, and business growth.
Recruiter Metrics

Recruiter Metrics

Discover the top 21 recruiter metrics that measure hiring effectiveness and refine your organization's talent acquisition process. Learn how to leverage these insights for a more efficient hiring strategy and improved candidate quality.
Leadership Competencies

Leadership Competencies

Enhance leadership qualities within your organization to boost innovation and teamwork, with a focus on nurturing a broad spectrum of competencies. Dive into practical methods for developing essential leadership skills for organizational success and employee growth.
Human Resources Management Strategies

Human Resources Management Strategies

Uncover the keys to a successful HR management strategy that boosts business growth by aligning HR activities with organizational goals. Delve into effective HR practices, from recruitment to talent management, for enhancing workforce efficiency and productivity.
Books For HR

Books For HR

Discover the essential HR books for professionals eager to excel in human resources, spanning analytics, fundamentals, and management insights. These 21 recommended reads cover crucial skills, strategies, and innovations in HR.
Part time California Hours

Part time California Hours

Dive into the nuances of part-time employment in California, including work hours, rights, and common employer misconceptions. Protect your rights as a part-time worker against wage, overtime, and benefit discrimination.
What is OASDI tax

What Is OASDI Tax

Understand the OASDI tax, a crucial component of the US Social Security program, deducted from earnings to support retirement. It ensures financial stability for retirees, the disabled, and their families, with a 6.2% rate matched by employers.
What Does “Biweekly” Mean - Definition and Examples

What does “biweekly” mean? Definition and examples

Unravel the dual meanings of "biweekly" with examples and tips for clear communication, whether it means twice a week or every two weeks. Discover the correct usage and alternatives to avoid confusion in scheduling and terminology.
Bereavement Leave

Bereavement Leave

California workers now have the right to 5 days of bereavement leave for the loss of an immediate family member, effective January 1, 2023. This guide, by the CRD, outlines eligibility, usage, and employer obligations for employees and employers.
5 Examples of Insubordination in the Workplace (With Tips)

5 examples of insubordination in the workplace (with tips)

Learn how to identify and manage insubordination in the workplace with practical examples and effective resolution strategies for maintaining harmony. Discover tips for addressing workplace disputes and fostering a productive environment.

How To Get High School Transcript

Whether you're apply for college or or a job, you may need to get your high school transcript. This article walks you through the process of getting a high school transcript.

Is the patient or IHSS responsible for a caregiver wage?

This article highlights the legal protections and remedies available to caregivers for recovering unpaid wages, additional compensation, and late payment fees, demonstrating the legal channels caregivers can utilize to secure justice and proper payment.

How much money does a stripper make?

A stripper's earnings can range from $300 to $5,000 nightly or $6,000 to $100,000 monthly, influenced by factors such as location, attractiveness, skills, and the number of hours worked.

What does Job outlook mean and Why is it important?

A job outlook is a statement that project rate of growth or decline in employment for a position or occupation. Job outlook is important because it predicts if a career will grow or job availability for an occupation.

20 Types of Interviews and Tips to Succeed at Each

Interviews are pivotal in the hiring process, offering deeper insights into candidates' abilities. This article explores 20 common interview types, providing strategies for success. Preparation tips help candidates navigate each format, showcasing their qualifications effectively.

What is California Pay Transparency Law?

California's pay transparency law mandates businesses to publish pay ranges in job descriptions, aiming to eliminate wage disparities and promote equitable compensation practices. The law impacts both employers and employees by requiring transparent salary structures, prohibiting salary history inquiries, and empowering employees with the right to know and negotiate fair pay.

Employee Law in California

Employment law in California comprises a set of regulations and legal standards that govern the relationship between employers and employees in the state. These laws cover a wide range of areas including wage and hour requirements, anti-discrimination policies, workplace safety, and employee rights.

Laws that Prohibits Wrongful Termination

There are different types of federal and California laws that prohibit wrongful termination. This article identifies and discusses the different types of wrongful termination laws.

See all blog: Business | Corporate | Employment