February 18, 2020

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Proposed Washington State Law Would Create 32-Hour Workweek

New legislation recently introduced in the Washington State Legislature seeks to implement a 32-hour workweek for nonexempt Washington-based workers. If the proposal were to become law, employers would be required to pay overtime compensation to nonexempt employees whose workweeks exceed 32 hours.

Senate Bill (SB) 6516 proposes to amend RCW 49.46.130, the Washington law that establishes a 40-hour workweek in the state. Because the proposal would amend but not replace the existing law, the current exemptions would remain applicable—and none have been amended by the proposed bill. Instead, the bill’s proposed changes merely—but monumentally—revise the references in RCW 49.46.130 from a 40-hour workweek to a 32-hour workweek.

The lead cosponsor of SB 6516 is Washington State Senator Joe Nguyen. In several interviews, Senator Nguyen seems to view the proposal as a “conversation” starter and a “concept” to begin discussing. Because it appears to be a preliminary measure, we do not expect the proposal to pass, but, we will continue to follow SB 6516 closely and provide legislative updates as necessary.

© 2020, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., All Rights Reserved.

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About this Author

Adam Pankratz, Ogletree Deakins Law Firm, Labor and Employment Litigation Attorney
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Mr. Pankratz represents corporations and management in a myriad of employment-related and complex commercial matters, including litigation involving discrimination, retaliation, harassment, wage and hour, wrongful termination, ADA and FMLA leave issues, and other matters in state and federal courts and administrative agencies. Mr. Pankratz has experience successfully representing employers in executive termination, non-compete and unfair competition disputes.  Mr. Pankratz has extensive experience representing employers both locally and nationally on various employment...

206-693-7053
Associate

Kyle is an advisor and employment litigator in Ogletree Deakins' Seattle office. He represents employers in state and federal courts, as well as before administrative agencies.

Kyle has experience handling employers against alleged claims for discrimination, harassment, retaliation, constructive discharge, and wrongful termination. 

Kyle also has experience in employee non-compete, non-disclosure, non-solicitation, and misappropriation of trade secret claims. Prior to joining Ogletree Deakins, Kyle practiced at a boutique IP firm. In this capacity, he focused on the intersection of IP and employment law, including appreciable experience in employee noncompete and trade secret disputes.

Kyle's litigation experience includes arguing motions at the trial court level and before the Washington State Court of Appeals. He has participated in federal jury trials and labor arbitrations, as well as taken and defended depositions in employment litigation.

Education

  • J.D., summa cum laude, Gonzaga University School of Law, 2015
  • B.A., magna cum laude, Washington State University, 2011

Admitted to Practice

  • Washington
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Western Districts of Washington
206-693-7057