Can an employer force overrime

We work an alternative work schedule
that is 48 hours a week and one 60 hour
week then we have two weeks off every 9
weeks. Any thing worked outside of
this schedule is paid overtime at a
rate of 1.5 with a cap of 60/hr.
Everything I read is that over 40 hours
is paid at time and a half, no cap on
pay. We are salaried employees in
illinois. We are working on a
mandatory overtime policy so we know
how overtime needs will be handled. I
have been asked by my peers to hey a
full understanding before we make the

Asked on April 2, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If you exempt employees, your employer does not have to pay *any* overtime--if they choose to pay, it is voluntary; and being voluntary, any amount they pay is legal. If you are not exempt or non-exempt from overtime, then any week you work more than 40 hours in that week, all time past 40 hours is paid at an overtime rate (you receive a 50% premium over base).
If you are salaried, you *might* be exempt from overtime. To be exempt, you must earn a salary of at least (approximately) $23,600 per year; and your job duties and responsibilities or authority must meet the criteria for one or more of the "tests" for exemption. You can find these tests on the U.S. Dept. of Labor website, under "overtime"; compare them to your job. If you qualify under a test (or more than one; there is overlap) and earn at least $23.6k/year by salary, you are exempt from overtime and do not receive any extra when working more than 40 hours in a week, unless the employer volutarily chooses to pay you more. If not exempt, however, you must be paid at the legal overtime rate, which is a 50% premium over base pay. If you believe you should earn overtime and are not, speak to the department of labor (federal or state) about filing a complaint.
Employers can require overtime; if not-exempt, they must pay you appropriately, but they can require it.

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