Connection to Exempt Employees Fatal to FLSA Claims
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Connection to Exempt Employees Fatal to FLSA Claims

California car dealership employees lost their fight for overtime pay in their second trip to the nation’s high court. These employees, who worked as service advisors, sued their employer alleging overtime violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). A divided court held the service advisors are exempt from the FLSA's overtime pay requirement. The court reasoned that mechanics and other workers who procure parts are explicitly exempt under the FLSA and they rely on service advisors to perform their job. Accordingly, the majority found the phrase contained in the FLSA exemption, “'primarily engaged in ... servicing automobiles' must include some individuals who do not physically repair automobiles themselves, but who are integrally involved in the servicing process," such as the service advisors. The dissent criticized the court’s departure from narrow construction of the FLSA noting service advisors, unlike salesman and mechanics, are just the type of workers “Congress intended to shield from the evils of overwork.”

Encino Motorcars LLC v Navarro