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Drilling Superintendent entitled to Trial on Unpaid Overtime due to Possible Misclassification as Exempt

Posted Friday, May 24, 2013 2:27 pm

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eastern District of Louisiana recently held that a superintendent managing a drilling crew at a horizontal directional drilling company could proceed on a claim that he was improperly classified as exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act and denied overtime as a result.


The employer moved for summary judgment on the grounds that the employee qualified for both the executive and administrative exemptions. The court reasoned that there were factual issues regarding the applicability of both exemptions, including whether the employee was paid on a salary basis, whether his primary duties involved management of the enterprise or were those of a blue collar manual laborer, whether he could make suggestions and recommendations as to the hiring, firing, advancement, promotion or any other change of status of other employees, and more. As such, the court concluded, trial is proper in this matter.


The proper classification of employees as exempt or non-exempt can prove challenging. Employers are advised to periodically review their position classifications under FLSA and to stay updated on recent developments in this area of the law. To learn the most current information, please join attorneys Tamara Gerrard and Kendra Kawai for a morning program on "What you need to know about FLSA Exemptions" on June 20. Read more.

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