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Can an employee waive overtime pay with a signed letter?

Question: Can an employee waive overtime pay with a signed letter?

Answer from Kim, SPHR, AAM, CPIW: No. An employee can’t waive their right to overtime pay, even if they want to. The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) prohibits the waiver of an employee's rights to overtime pay (and minimum wage) in nearly all circumstances. The only time an employee can be exempt from overtime is when they perform work that qualifies for an exemption under federal (and state) law and meets any other applicable tests or criteria for the exemption.

This Q&A does not constitute legal advice and does not address state or local law.

Kim has held many Senior level HR positions including VP of HR and Administration for a California-based Workers’ Compensation TPA, Director of HR for a benefit and risk management company, and board positions with a professional insurance association. Kim spends her free time tracking down her grown sons.

Legal Disclaimer: The HR Support Center is not engaged in the practice of law. The content in this email should not be construed as legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you have legal questions concerning your situation or the information you have obtained, you should consult with a licensed attorney. The HR Support Center cannot be held legally accountable for actions related to its receipt.


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