Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employers are required to pay covered workers 1.5 times their regular rate of pay for each hour of work per week beyond 40 hours. This protection is designed to spread available work and increase employment, and to raise the wages of employees who are required by their employers to work long hours.
Far too many salaried workers are not covered by overtime or minimum-wage protections because the overtime salary threshold of $23,660 per year has not kept up with wage growth or inflation and is therefore far too low. In July 2015, the Department of Labor (DOL) proposed raising the overtime salary threshold to $50,440 in 2016, a threshold which would directly benefit 13.5 million workers, most of whom would gain new rights to overtime eligibility.
How Many Salaried Workers in Your State Would Gain Overtime Protections under the New Proposed Threshold?: Share of salaried workers covered under current and proposed threshold*, 2014
|State||Currently covered||Covered by proposed threshold|
|District of Columbia||5.7%||25.6%|
* The currently overtime salary threshold is $455 per week (or $23,660 per year). The Department of Labor proposed update to the salary threshold would index the salary to the 40th percentile weekly wage of full-time salaried workers. For 2014, this number would be $933 per week.
Source: EPI analysis of Department of Labor (2015) and Current Population Survey Merged Outgoing Rotation Group microdata (CPS MORG)
The interactive map above compares the share of salaried workers who currently fall under the current overtime salary threshold to the number of workers in each state who would directly benefit from the proposed threshold of $50,440. The share of those covered by the overtime salary threshold would increase by 30 percentage points or more in nine states (Ark., Hawaii, N.C., Okla., La., Fla., Nev., Tenn., and Ala.). In 37 states plus the District of Columbia, the share of salaried workers covered would rise by 20.0 to 29.7 percentage points, and in four states (Wash., Alaska, Mass., and Conn.), the share would rise by 17.8 to 19.7 percentage points.