I am paid salary and am "overtime exempt",but I've been forced to work way over 40 hours a week.Is this fair?

I work in Manhattan (NYC) and work about 12 hours per day, five days a week. Our work day is 7.5 hours. I feel like they're taking advantage of me - I don't get paid for my overtime! Is this fair? What do you think?


mbrcatz17: I do dig in and smile and get the job done, I just don't think it's fair period. That's what I'm saying.

8 Answers

  • ?
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You could also form or join a representative union. That's the whole point of a union, to act as a unified voice against a corporation which, by definition, has no conscience of it's own.

    Worker's unions are generally perceived to be blue collar organisations, but as the shift from manual work to the service industries has taken place over the last couple of decades, a white collar role is mainstream and not the prestigious, higher earning job that it might once have been.

    Office workers are very likely to work longer hours without recompense or even a culture that admits to the problem (in London, the average city worker adds an extra 7 hours of unpaid work to their week, and that doesn't include lunchtimes spent working and eating at the desk, or work taken home or done over the weekend).

    It's an interesting topic. Those who say that 'life isn't fair' or that 'that's how it is' are, I think, missing the point. If employees accept lies or mis-leading statements as the truth, then they are supporting an illusion that can grow. What's more, corporations are very able to hold to the letter of an agreement (such as start times, no overtime) - so why should one accept one without a change in agreements to reflect the other? Even with bonuses and other feel-good incentives, it is still the equivalent of patronage, a corporate pat on the head for towing the line.

    If the company recognises that it's employees work extra hours (and as a former senior executive, I expected that and factored it into my utilisation forecast), then it should amend the contracts to say that.

    Creeping changes are not good for anyone.

  • 1 decade ago

    It seems to be a familiar topic, someone being overtime exempt, but unhappy about the hours they work. First off, do you work the extra hours because you're required to or because you feel guilty if you don't? Are the long hours permanent or seasonal? Most times in my experience, people working excessive hours are doing so because it it seasonal, they are workaholics, really trying to excel and rise to the top, or just trying to impress the boss. If you're looking for a more structured schedule, I suggest pursuing either non-exempt or hourly positions.

  • 1 decade ago

    Welcome to the club! Definitely not fair, but globalization has forced us all to kick our productivity up a notch to prevent our jobs from going overseas. It's called self-preservation.

    I read over the weekend that globalization has created a tremendous amount of wealth over the last five years. It's a no brainer that globalization benefits workers in developing countries (China, India, etc) and hurts workers across Europe and the US. Who would have thought that besides developing countries, the real benefactors of globalization would be C-level and Wall Street executives with their ridiculous pay packages and golden parachutes.

  • 1 decade ago

    Being fair isn't something that happens in the real world. When your salaried you are almost always expected to work more than your 40 but what you can do is take it in compensation - leave a little early or take a extra day off.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    In 2004, the Federal Government passed strict guidelines as to who can and can't be exempt from overtime. I'd suggest looking up those guidelines and seeing where you fall. If your really not exempt, I'd address it with your HR dept.

  • 1 decade ago

    Welcome to the real world! I've been salaried almost all my life - most people who are salaried DO have to work more than 40 hours a week. That's just the way the world works.

    If you don't like it, you find another job. if you want a job that pays overtime, be willing to work for less than $10 an hour.

    Do you think that company executives only work 40 hours? Of course not! And you can't get to BE an executive working only 40 hours, either!! Believe me, people notice when you work over, and they notice your attitude about your work. And people that dig in with a smile and get the job done get promoted. People that resent working overtime, don't get promoted, don't get raises, and eventually, won't get hired.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    No it is not fair...... you should contact HR and let them know your situation. It is against the law to work over 40 a week and not get overtime.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Read over your contract

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