WHAT’S NEW FOR 2019 COMPUTER SOFTWARE PROFESSIONALS « Law Offices of Timothy Bowles | Top Employment Law Firm in Los Angeles


New 2019 Overtime Exemption Rates

California Labor Code section 515.5 exempts certain computer software professionals from overtime compensation if they receive specified minimum compensation.

California’s Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) has announced its rate increase for this minimum, effective January 1, 2019, to $45.41, up from $43.58.  Alternatively, an otherwise qualified employee paid by salary is eligible on minimum annual compensation of $94,603.25, payable at least once monthly at no less than $7,883.62.

An exempt computer professional must also meet each of the high-level skills and duties criteria as laid out in Labor Code section 515.5. Among these, the employee must be “primarily engaged” (more than 50% of the time) in intellectual or creative work which requires “the exercise of discretion and independent judgment” applying systems analysis to determine “functional specifications” of hardware, software or systems; designing computer systems or programs; and/or documenting, testing, creating or modifying computer programs related to computer systems software or hardware design.

Although such qualified employees need not be paid overtime premium under California law, employers should further ensure such workers meet the overtime exemption for computer professionals under federal law.

It is also possible for computer professionals to qualify for the administrative, executive or “learned profession” exemptions from overtime. Each category possesses its own distinct qualification rules.

For more information, please contact one of our attorneys Tim Bowles, Cindy Bamforth or Helena Kobrin.

Cindy Bamforth

December 19, 2018