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Can I receive overtime pay if I work as a consultant?

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) provides that non-exempt workers may be entitled to overtime pay at a rate of one and one-half times a workers standard rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of 40 hours in any one work week. On the other hand, if you are considered exempt, then you may not be entitled to overtime pay, regardless of the number of hours worked. Hence - whether you are exempt v. non-exempt can have a significant impact on your take home pay.

However, the determination whether you are exempt or not can be confusing. In general, exemptions fall into three distinct categories - professional, administrative and executive. Rather than applying them to particular job titles, courts typically look at the type of work done and the job as a whole to determine whether an exemption applies.

For example, the executive exemption applies where a workers is primarily engaged in duties that involve the management of the business. The administrative exemption applies where a worker devotes the majority of his or her time to work related to the general business operations of a company. The professional exemption applies generally to intellectual jobs requiring discretion and judgment, such as lawyers, doctors, teachers and architects. Additional exemptions apply where workers are considered outside salesperson, or inside sales persons, depending on various factors.

As such, the question whether you are entitled to overtime pay is complex and requires the analysis of several different factors. If you have questions concerning whether you should be considered exempt v. non-exempt please contact the experienced Georgia wage and hour lawyers at Buckley Beal, LLP for an immediate consultation.

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