Under the new labor laws, is it legal for an employer to reduce an employee’s pay when they drop them from salary to hourly with them still retaining their title and duties?

Asked on October 22, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Oklahoma


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

It is absolutely legal, unless you have an in-force (i.e. unexpired) written employment contract which guarantees your salary. Otherwise, an employer has free and complete discretion what and how to pay individuals, and what duties and titles to give them. It can make a senior manager be paid on an hourly minimum wage basis, for example, regardless of how or how much he/she was previously paid. Of course, if the pay is not worth the work, the employee has the option of looking for different employement--and it's possible that the reduction has been done specifically to "encourage" the employee to move on.

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