Exempt Employee Pay - Fair Labor Standards Act

Policy on Exempt Employee Pay

In accordance with the Fair Labor Standards Act, exempt employees are paid on a salary basis and may not have their pay reduced for variations in the quantity or quality of work performed. Employees who feel their pay has been improperly reduced should report this immediately following the Complaint Procedures below.

Note: Deductions from pay are permissible when an exempt employee is absent from work for one or more full days for personal reasons that do not qualify for sick or vacation time.  Such pay deductions must be made in full day increments.  Deductions from sick and vacation balances are permissible in half day increments.

Provisions Mandated by the Salary Basis Rules:

Exempt employees routinely receive their full salary for any week in which they perform any work, without regard to the number of days or hours worked. However, exempt employees need not be paid for any workweek in which they perform no work.
The few exceptions to the requirement to pay exempt employees on a salary basis are listed below.

  1. Absences of one or more full days for personal reasons other than sickness or disability when the employee has exhausted all vacation time or the employee has requested leave without pay. Partial days must be paid.
  2. Absences of one or more full days due to sickness or disability when the employee has exhausted all paid leave benefits or is still in their probationary period as a new hire.
  3. Fees received by the employee for jury duty, witness duty or military leave may be applied to offset the pay otherwise due to the employee.
  4. Unpaid disciplinary suspensions of one or more full days in accordance with Brown's policies.
  5. Deductions for unpaid leave taken in accordance with a legitimate absence under the Family Medical Leave Act or the R.I. Parental Leave Act.
  6. Deductions for the first and last week of employment, when only part of the week is worked by the employees.

Complaint Procedures:

Employees who believe their pay has been improperly reduced should contact a representative of Compensation and Organizational Services immediately.

  1. The employee is responsible for submitting their complaint in writing via memo or e-mail. The complaint should include the dates and circumstances of the pay deduction and whether it has occurred on other occasions.
  2. Human Resources will review the complaints, the pay records and interview the supervisor and employee to determine if the pay deduction was in compliance with Brown policy.
  3. If the deductions were improper, the money will be reimbursed to the employee as promptly as possible.
  4. The resolution of the situation will be documented and placed in the employee's Human Resources file.