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Can the FLSAs Salary Test Requirement Be Prorated for Part-timers

December 29, 1999
Related Topics: Contingent Staffing, Wages and Hours, Featured Article
Issue: Your organization has just hired a part-time executive assistant, and you need to classify the job as exempt or nonexempt from the requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). To qualify for the FLSA’s administrative exemption, the regulations state that the employee must receive a minimum salary of $155 a week (under the long test) or $250 a week (under the short test).

The salary for this position has been set at $7.50 per hour and the employee will be working 20 hours per week, totaling $150 per week. But, since this employee will only be working part-time, can the minimum salary requirements be prorated (i.e., divided in half) to account for the reduced hours of work?

Answer: Unfortunately, the regulations do not distinguish between full-time and part-time employees. Absent such a distinction, and based on the regulation’s mandate that salaried employees "must" be paid their full salaries in any given workweek "without regard to the number of days or hours worked," the salary requirements may not be reduced.

Cite: 29 CFR §541.2; 29 CFR §541.201 through .215; and 29 CFR §541.602. Wage & Hour Opinion Letter No. 2022, February 25, 1997, 99-02 CCH WH 32,843.

SOURCE: CCH Incorporated is a leading provider of information and software for human resources, legal, accounting, health-care and small-business professionals. CCH offers human resource management, payroll, employment, benefits, and worker-safety products and publications in print, CD, online and via the Internet. For more information and other updates on the latest HR news, check our Web site at

The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion.

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