Guide to Montana Overtime Laws
What are Montana Overtime Laws?
In the state of Montana, the majority of workers who receive an hourly wage and work over 40 hours in a 7-day work week must be provided with overtime compensation. When providing overtime compensation, an employer must pay at least 1.5 times the workers’ regularly hourly wage. Montana overtime laws are based on the number of hours worked in a traditional seven-day work week; the number of hours worked in a single day does not factor into the overtime calculation.
Additionally, MT overtime laws declare that employers may force their employees to work any number of hours in a given 40 hour week; limitations are placed on workers under the age of 18. But of course remember, that any number of hours worked beyond 40, must be compensated at 1.5 times the worker’s normal hourly rate.
Montana overtime laws make it mandatory that an employer pay an employee—described above—1.5 times their hourly wage. This applies to all hourly earners, with the exception of the following list:
Workers who are not protected by MT Overtime Laws:
• Montana Overtime Law does not protect workers employed on ranches or farms
• Seasonal employees at agricultural centers or fairs
• Montana Overtime Law does not provide protection for newspaper carriers or vendors
• Casual labor in or about private dwellings
• Fire Prevention and fire protection workers are not protected under Montana overtime laws
• Any position that requires the worker to reside or sleep at their office
• Seaman are not protected under MT overtime laws
• Vessel Operating Crews
• Inmates, patients or residents of any county, municipal or state correctional rehab institution or detention Center
• Youth Camps with Child Care Centers are not protected under Montana overtime laws
• Montana overtime law does not offer protection to Administrative, Executive, Computer Professional and Outside Sales employees
• Volunteers are not protected under Montana overtime laws
• Elected or appointive offices
MT Overtime Laws Regarding Breaks:
Montana overtime laws permit workers to request time off at later dates instead of being paid overtime wages in said periods. This is referred to as “exchange time” or “comp time.” When the employee takes his/her time off, payment must be paid at least one-half their typical wage rate. The exchange hours; however, may be paid at the regular rate. It must be noted; however, that federal law does not permit these types of agreements except for public workers and their employees.
To be exempt—according to MT Overtime Laws—as an executive employee, an individual must:
• Regularly direct the work of multiple (two or more) full-time employees
• Have management as his/her primary job function
• Possess the authority to hire and terminate or recommended said action or other changes in an employee’s working status
• Be compensated on a salary basis
• Spend no more than 1/5th of their time in activities not closely related to any of the above duties or 40% in a service or retail establishment
To be exempt—according to MT Overtime Laws—as an Administrative Employee, a person must:
• Possess as their “primary duty” the following:
o Non-manual or office work related to management policies or traditional business operations
o Performing work in an educational administration function, aka work directly related to training or academic instruction
• Regularly exercise independent judgment and discretion
• Directly assist bona fide executives or other administrative employees
• Perform general supervision work that is technical or specialized that requires special training, knowledge or experience
• Perform special assignments under only general supervision
To be exempt as a Professional Employee—according to MT Overtime Laws—one must:
• Have his/her primary duties include :
o Advanced knowledge typically requiring extensive education
o Creativity in a recognized artistic field
o Teaching imparting knowledge as a formal professor or teacher in an academic institution
o Practical application of highly specialized knowledge in computer platforms, programming, software engineering etc.
• Constantly exercises discretion and judgment
• Performs work that is predominantly eclectic and intellectual and which cannot be standardized in relation to a given time frame
• Spend no more than 20% of working hours—during a typical work week—in activities viewed as non-essential to the above duties
• Compensated on a “salary basis”
For a complete list of Montana overtime laws, please visit the www.lni.wa.gov/workplacerights/wages/overtime/.