In 2019, at the direction of Governor Jay Inslee, the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I), published a new schedule of minimum salary thresholds through January 1, 2028. The annually increasing salary thresholds specifically apply to the many university positions within the “Executive, Administrative and Professional” exemption.
For January 1, 2024, the minimum salary threshold to satisfy the law’s “Executive, Administrative and Professional” exemption will be $67,724.80 per year ($1,2302.40 per week). This means that the university’s “Executive, Administrative or Professional” staff members who earn less than $67,724.80 as of January 1, 2024, will no longer be exempt. HR may reclassify those employees as nonexempt on January 1, 2024; or potentially increase salaries close to the threshold to maintain the current exemption. The minimum threshold will continue to increase until January 1, 2028, at which time the projected salary level threshold is $92,560. Review the WA State Overtime Threshold Chart 2024-2028 for the projected salary level thresholds. More information can also be found on L&I’s Overtime Rules Fact Sheet.
Seattle U complies with all federal, state, and local laws relating to employee wages and hours, including the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the Washington State Minimum Wage Act (MWA). These laws require the university to provide overtime pay to employees for any work hours exceeding 40 hours in a given week, unless that employee is “exempt” from the laws.
The university presumes that all of its employee positions are “nonexempt”—meaning the positions are subject to the laws’ overtime requirements—unless and until the university’s Human Resources division concludes that the positions meet the criteria for being “exempt” from the laws.
Faculty (and some staff members) whose primary job duty is teaching, coaching, instructing, or lecturing to impart knowledge are classified exempt regardless of their salary amount. In addition, many staff members perform duties that meet the laws’ exemptions for “Executive, Administrative or Professional” positions. Unlike teaching professionals, however, positions falling within the “Executive, Administrative, or Professional” exemptions are subject to a state-required minimum salary before being classified as exempt.
Based on the salary threshold rule in the state of Washington, Seattle U expects to reclassify a number of currently exempt positions to nonexempt through January 1, 2028, and beyond.