RE: Tech writer/ Documentation Specialist

Subject: RE: Tech writer/ Documentation Specialist
From: "Dick Margulis " <margulis -at- mail -dot- fiam -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 15 Apr 2003 15:16:15 -0400

Keri Morgret <morgret -at- stanfordalumni -dot- org>
>And, in some states at least (I'm thinking of CA here), engineers are
>"exempt" - exempt from overtime and such, and are on a straight salary no
>matter how many hours they work.

And in some states, a job title cannot, by law, include the word engineer unless the person meets some state definition of engineer.

However, to Keri's point, certain jobs are exempt if they meet particular conditions defined by the IRS, not by the states. These conditions have to do with: (a) what you do (as opposed to what you are called); and (b) how much you are paid. Consult your local office of the US Department of Labor Wage and Hour Enforcement Division for the guidelines. Do not believe anything an employer or agency tells you unless they enclose a copy of the pertinent regulations.

I had a job in Texas in which I was illegally paid straight time for overtime. The Wage and Hour guy told me his job was to defend the rights of low-wage workers who were being exploited and that he would not waste federal resources helping someone at my income level, but he advised me to write a letter ("You're a writer, aren't you? You should be able to do this." Honest, that's what he said.) to my employer suggesting there had been a misunderstanding and implying, between the lines, that it might be necessary to involve legal counsel. That did the trick. They paid me the $6K they owed me in three easy installments. No muss, no fuss.


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