Professional Exemption

The professional exemption pertains to employees who perform work requiring advanced knowledge and education, licensed or certified by the State of California in law, medicine, dentistry, optometry, architecture, engineering, teaching, or accounting, or primarily engaged in work requiring specialized knowledge gained through an advanced course of study, generally beyond a bachelor's degree, or who work in an artistic field which is original and creative, work as a teacher, and who regularly exercise discretion and judgment. They must receive a salary of not less than two times the state minimum wage for full-time employment.

There is a specific exemption for hourly computer professionals paid a minimum of $49.77 per hour (adjusted yearly) whose primary duties involve systems analysis, programming, software engineering; design, development, documentation, analysis, creation, testing, or modification of computer systems or programs, including prototypes, based on and related to user or system design specifications; documentation, testing, creation, or modification of computer programs related to the design of software or hardware for computer operating systems; or the employee is highly skilled and is proficient in the theoretical and practical application of highly specialized information to computer systems analysis, programming, and software engineering. A job title shall not be determinative of the applicability of this exemption..