White House Watch

Biden Admin Resurrects Failed Obama Effort To Raise Salary Threshold For Overtime Pay


The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced Wednesday a proposal to extend overtime pay protections for salaried workers, reviving an effort by former President Barack Obama that was struck down in court.

The new proposed rule would require employers to pay salaried workers exceeding 40 hours a week overtime pay if they earn less than $1,059 per week or $55,000 per year, according to a press release from the DOL. The move by the DOL mirrors an effort from the Obama administration in 2016 to raise the threshold eligible for overtime pay to workers making $47,000 per year, which was later struck down by a federal judge in Texas saying that the threshold was too high and encompassed some management workers who are exempt from overtime pay protections, according to Reuters.

“We are committed to ensuring that all workers are paid fairly for their hard work,” Jessica Looman, principal deputy wage and hour division administrator, said in the press release. “For too long, many low-paid salaried workers have been denied overtime pay, even though they often work long hours and perform much of the same work as their hourly counterparts. This proposed rule would ensure that more workers receive extra pay when they work long hours.”

The current threshold for salaried workers doing management-related duties to receive overtime pay is $35,500 per year, established by the Trump administration in 2020, according to Reuters. Overtime pay requires employers to pay workers one and a half times their regular rate if they work more than 40 hours in a week.

The new proposal would extend overtime protections for 3.6 million salaried workers and seeks to better identify which employees are classified as executive, administrative or professional and should be overtime pay-exempt, according to the DOL. The proposed rule will be open for public comment for 60 days.

The DOL did not immediately respond to a request to comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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