FLSA Employee FAQs | Human Resources | Kent State University

FLSA Employee FAQs

Can I take any earned overtime as comp time?

No. According to FLSA regulations, non-exempt staff are to be paid for overtime hours worked. Other forms of payment, such as compensatory time off, are not to be used except where legally required (i.e., if work is performed on a holiday).

Can I work overtime whenever I choose?

No.  According to administrative policy 6-07.9, all overtime must be authorized by the properly designated administrative authority (e.g. a supervisor or manager). While overtime worked without supervisor approval must be paid, you should check with your supervisor to find out what the process is in your department for overtime approval.

My supervisor has asked me to change my work schedule to avoid working overtime. Can I choose to work overtime instead?

No. Your supervisor has the right to alter your work schedule so that you do not work more than 40 hours in a work week. 

Do I have to punch a time clock (clock in and clock out) every day?

No. As a salaried non-exempt employee you will receive the same pay amount each pay period.  You will still be expected to enter leave time (vacation and sick).  The only additional piece of information you will be asked to report is any hours over 40 worked in the work week.

Will I have to clock in and out for lunch every day?

No. You will continue to be paid on a salaried basis for 40 hours per week unless you work out a flex schedule with your supervisor and/or you work overtime hours.

How will I report overtime?

Salaried nonexempt employees will continue to be paid on a salaried basis. Employees in this group will report overtime directly to their supervisor. The supervisor is responsible for recording the overtime hours worked on a designated webpage. Overtime hours need to be submitted by noon on Tuesday for the hours worked in the previous week.

How will I report exception time (vacation, sick, and personal time)?

Salaried non-exempt employees will continue to report, vacation, sick and personal time through employee self-service (Flashline) leave reporting.

I’m used to having some flexibility with my work schedule. Will that continue if I’m salaried, non-exempt?

Yes. Flex scheduling is allowed within the same workweek. For example, let’s say a typical schedule is eight hours a day (during the day), and your department needs you to work a special event for four hours during the evening. The schedule may be changed, with the approval of your supervisor, to give you 4 hours off at another time during the same workweek.

How will vacation and PTO accrue for employees who will be salaried nonexempt as of Dec. 1, 2016?

Vacation and sick leave accrual will remain the same at the standard rates based on unclassified, assignment length, and years of service accrual rates.

Where can I go for more information?
What is the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)?

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is a federal law administered by the Department of Labor (DOL). Among other things, the FLSA establishes minimum wage and overtime pay affecting employees in the private sector and in federal, state and local governments.

Why were changes made to the FLSA?

In 2014 President Obama tasked the DOL to update and modernize the FLSA regulations related to minimum wage and overtime pay. The DOL issued its final regulations on May 18, 2016.

What are the changes?

Nationally, the new regulations extend overtime protection to 4.2 million workers who are not currently eligible for overtime under federal law. Specifically, the changes will:

  • Increase the salary threshold below which employees are eligible for overtime from $23,660 a year to $47,476 a year.
  • Automatically increase the salary threshold every three years, beginning Jan. 1, 2020. 
When do the changes take effect?

The new regulations are effective Dec. 1, 2016.

What does this mean for Kent State University employees?

Under the new federal rules, if an employee’s annual salary is below the new minimum salary threshold of $47,476 annually, the employee will be considered non-exempt and therefore entitled to overtime. 
At Kent State, this will affect a relatively small percent of employees throughout the multi-campus system, who will become salaried non-exempt. These employees will continue to receive a consistent amount of pay each pay period.  In addition, they will be eligible for overtime pay for any hours worked over 40 during a work week (i.e., Sunday through Saturday). Sick, vacation and personal time count as hours worked.  The new rules do include some exemptions for higher education. 
What are the exemptions for higher education?

Teachers are exempt from the new FLSA regulations if their primary duty is teaching, instructing, lecturing or tutoring. This includes graduate students whose primary duty is teaching or serving as a teaching assistant.

Certain academic administrative personnel, such as counselors, department heads, and academic advisors are exempt if they are paid at least as much as the starting salary for teachers at their institutions.

Athletic coaches and assistant coaches are exempt if their primary duties involve teaching. This includes instructing athletes on how to perform their sport but excludes recruiting. 

What is the difference between an exempt and a non-exempt employee?

Employees whose employers are governed by the FLSA are either "exempt" or "non-exempt” from overtime. Non-exempt employees are eligible for overtime pay and other FLSA requirements, while exempt employees are not. 
In general, whether an employee is exempt or non-exempt depends on (a) how much they are paid, (b) how they are paid, and (c) what kind of work they do. For example, to be categorized as “exempt” an employee must (a) be paid at least $23,600 per year (which is increasing to $47,476 on Dec. 1), (b) be paid on a salary basis, and (c) perform exempt job duties. Most employees must meet all three "tests" to be exempt.
Could the Dec. 1 implementation date be delayed?

There are efforts at the federal level to stop or delay the implementation, including a bill passed Sept. 28 by the U.S. House of Representatives that would delay the Dec. 1 effective date for six months. However, the bill still needs to be passed by the Senate, and if that occurs, it could also be subject to a presidential veto.  In order to be prepared for timely compliance with the rule change, Kent State is proceeding with the Dec. 1 guideline.

How do I know if this federal change will impact my job?

A cross-divisional team of representatives from Business and Finance, Human Resources, Academic Affairs, Government Relations and General Counsel has developed an implementation plan. The impacted employees will be notified by mid-November. 

What if I’m a represented (union) employee?

FLSA rules apply to employees based on the factors specified in the federal regulations, regardless of an employee’s union representation.