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Crazy Law: Truck Drivers, Mechanics, and Loaders Employed By Motor Carriers Are Limited With Overtime Rights


Many employees are entitled to overtime when they work over 40 hours in a week. There are different rules for certain employees in the transportation industry. When Congress passed the overtime law (the Fair Labor Standards Act) it limited it to not apply to certain employees employed by a company that is governed by the Motor Carrier Act. This half century old decision really makes no sense anymore and likely only exists because of the powerful transportation industry.

There are limits, however,  For example, certain employees are only exempt if they do work that affects the safety of operation of motor vehicles in interstate or foreign commerce within the meaning of the Motor Carrier Act.

With this said, some workers who work for motor carriers are entitled to overtime pay. The courts have held that It is the employer’s burden to affirmatively prove that its employees come within the scope of the overtime exemption, and entitlement to the exemption must be proven “plainly and unmistakably.” Friedrich v. U.S. Computer Serv., 974 F.2d 409, 412 (3d Cir.1992).