As part of the University's ongoing compliance effort, Human Resources reviews new positions, reclassification requests, and evaluates current jobs to ensure continued compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

General FLSA Information

The primary objective of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is to protect workers’ rights. The FLSA is enforced by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) Wage and Hour Division. The FLSA establishes the following:

Other provisions of the FLSA define the following:

The FLSA does not regulate:


Covered, nonexempt employees must be paid the minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. Overtime pay is paid at a rate of one and one-half times the employee's regular rate of pay and it is required after 40 hours of work in a workweek.

Exemption Status

Exempt and nonexempt classifications determine what work is overtime eligible. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires that overtime (payment for hours worked in excess of 40 hours in workweek) be paid to employee performing nonexempt work. FLSA does not require that time and overtime be paid to employees performing exempt work.

Under the FLSA, there are three exemption tests that must be met in order for a position to be classified as exempt. These include salary level, salary basis, and job duties.

Many times the positions have a combination of exempt and nonexempt duties. The "primary duty" of the position must be the performance of exempt work. Primary duty means the principal, main, major or most important duty that the employee performs. An employee's primary duty is determined by looking at all the facts, with the major emphasis on the character of the employee's job as a whole.


Every employer covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) must keep certain records for each covered, nonexempt worker. There is no required form for the records, but the records must include accurate information about the employee and data about the hours worked and the wages earned. The following is a listing of the basic records that an employer must maintain:


The Department of Labor representatives investigate wages, hours, and other employment practices. The Obama administration has increased compliance with FLSA rules. In 2010, employers paid $6.5 million in back wages related to FLSA settlements and penalties. In the previous year, they paid only $2.6 million.

Some of the common FLSA violations include the following:

Penalties for failing to pay minimum wages or overtime include the following:

Penalties for wrongly classifying a position as exempt include the following:  





Contact Human Resources

Straz Tower

Department of Human Resources
915 W. Wisconsin Ave.
David A. Straz, Jr. Tower, Room 185
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1881
Google Map

Phone: (414) 288-7305
Fax: (414) 288-7425

Email Human Resources