Salaried Employee Rights in Missouri
The Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations follows federal law when determining rights for salaried workers. Federal regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) outline the rules and regulations for determining the working status of salaried employees and how to appropriately compensate these workers. Salaried workers in Missouri may have all the rights of hourly employees depending on the nature of the position and level of pay.
It is legal in Missouri and other states to pay a worker a salary in lieu of an hourly wage. The employee must receive this salary on regular paydays just like every other worker, and the amount of that payment may not fluctuate based on hours worked or the quality of work performed. If an employer varies the payment of an employee's salary based on the worker's hours, that worker would be considered an hourly employee and must receive compensation for every hour worked over the given week.
Just because an employee earns a salary, does not mean the obligation to pay overtime wages no longer exists. Missouri follows the FLSA when determining eligibility for overtime hours. Under this federal law, a salaried employee must pass a duties test to gain exemption to overtime pay requirements. This means the employee must engage in certain responsibilities while at work, including making business decisions for a company or department and regularly operating in a supervisory capacity. If a salaried employee does not meet any of the duty requirements under the FLSA, she must receive overtime compensation at the 150 percent rate based on hourly pay. In the case of a salary, an employer determines hourly pay by breaking down the employee's salary over a standard 40-hour work week.
There are no minimum or maximum hour requirements for Missouri hourly or salaried workers, according to the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. An employer may require an employee to work as many hours or as few hours as he sees fit. It is illegal for an employer to pay an employee a salary as a means of garnering cheaper labor for hours worked. If a nonexempt employee's weekly salary breaks down to less than the minimum wage over weekly hours worked, the employee must receive appropriate compensation to make up this difference.
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, an exempt employee in Missouri and other states earns at least $455 per week and $23,600 per year. The employee must also satisfy at least one clause of the FLSA duties test. An exempt employee does not receive overtime pay. Additionally, an employer of an exempt worker does not have to keep time sheets or require the employee to clock in for a shift. An exempt employee's salary may rise above her minimum weekly salary but cannot fall below it. If an employer lowers an exempt employee's salary this may change her status and make her a nonexempt employee.