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May 06, 2010
Criteria Necessary for an Employee to Qualify for a Professional Exemption

In a BLR webinar entitled "Exemption Audits: Prepare Now for Stepped-Up Department of Labor (DOL) Enforcement--Who's Entitled to Overtime and Who's Not," Cheryl D. Orr, Esq. partner and co-chair of the national Labor and Employment Practice Group at Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP described the criteria necessary for an employee to be eligible for a Professional exemption. Professional exemptions are differentiated as Learned and Creative.

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Learned Professionals are defined as:

  • Having an advanced knowledge in a field of science or learning, typically via prolonged specialized study/instruction
  • Someone whose primary duty is performed of work requiring advanced intellectual knowledge

Creative Professionals are defined as:

  • Someone's whose primary duty is the performance of work requiring invention, imagination, originality or talent in a recognized field of artistic or creative endeavor

Cheryl D. Orr, Esq. is a partner and co-chair of the national Labor and Employment Practice Group at Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP. She concentrates her practice on defending employers against FLSA collective actions and state and federal wage and hour class actions. She regularly litigates discrimination, harassment, and unfair competition claims, conducts high-level workplace investigations, develops plans for reductions in force and offers employer advice and counseling.

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