What is the law regarding your pay when going from hourly ro salary?

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What is the law regarding your pay when going from hourly ro salary?

I have been an hourly employee at my company for 5 1/2 years. I was selected 2 years ago to work on an executive project with a new job title. I made a request recently to be moved from hourly to salary as I was the only hourly employee and wanted the freedom of overtime without approval. I have now been put on salary at a significantly lower gross pay then I was making at both my previous position and the past 2 years in my current position. Is this legal??

Asked on September 16, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Washington

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

It is completely legal. Unless you had a written employment contract guarantying you a certain compensation, your pay was 100% under your employer's control. (That is part of being an "employee at will," which all employees are in this country unless they have an employment contract.) The employer can change how you are paid, or raise or lower what you are paid, at will. Therefore, your pay can do down when you go from hourly to salary. In fact that's not uncommon: I have a friend who is an engineer with a masters who resisted being promoted to management because he made more as an hourly line employee.


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