There may be a host of outside representatives who are part of the “sales process” but who do not close the sale with a signed document. This U.S. Supreme Court decision may limit the opportunity of persons not involved in the actual sale of the object or service to obtain overtime pay. For example, what about the highly technical person who provide sales support for the salesperson in the field during a PowerPoint presentation to a customer? Or, what about the salesperson himself or herself who is part of the sales team, but not the specific person who “closes the deal?” In the pharmaceutical industry, the sales rep usually obtains a “nonbinding commitment” from the medical provider. The Supreme Court considered this kind of commitment close enough to a “sale” to bring the employee within the “outside sales” exemption.
The Supreme Court decision will provide guidance in the interpretation by California courts of California overtime law. However, California is permitted to establish more liberal overtime pay regulations. Therefore, the decision is not precedent binding on California courts concerning California wage law.
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