Baltimore, MD asked in Employment Law, Workers' Compensation and Gov & Administrative Law for Maryland

Q: My job description/classification in HR does not reflect job scope or duties. This has prevented access to benefits.

I was hired under an open job position, to quickly get me in the door with the understanding that I would be quickly reclassified as I established myself in the company. I have been made to apply for the job I am already performing several times, and have been told that I do not qualify. I received very little/ vague feedback from DHR as to why (keeping in mind that there was a new job description that my supervisor created based on my contributions and resume in attempt to solidify my correct classification). My current classification does not grant me access to union, sick leave, or comp time benefits. I feel that I also may be owed back pay for the fact that I am in a position to hire staff, supervise, work long and often physical hours, etc. I am also relied on to support other departments in the agency and create custom and artistic objects outside of my admin work. What steps do I need to take to begin to remedy any of this?

1 Lawyer Answer
Joseph D. Allen
Joseph D. Allen
  • Hunt Valley, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: The question raises several issues, and requires more facts and discussion to fully answer. Generally speaking, entitlement to union benefits (or eligibility for membership) depends on the applicable CBA scope. There are federal (FMLA and the recent COVID-19 changes) and Maryland (sick/safe leave) laws that set minimum paid and unpaid sick leave requirements and generally apply without reference to job description. Presumably this is a salaried position meeting the minimum salary threshold for overtime exemption- so the question centers on whether the actual work done in the (apparently poorly defined) position also meets the job duties test for exemption. Supervising and hiring and "admin" work would seem to indicate a properly exempt position. It gets more complicated when otherwise non-exempt tasks are regularly performed by a nominally salaried exempt employee- but simply performing some lower level tasks is not in and of itself enough to take an employee out of exempt classification. The job description itself is relevant but not dispositive. It may be worth a consultation with a labor/employment attorney.

Mark A. Buterbaugh agrees with this answer

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.