According to the US Supreme Court’s website, on November 28, 2011, the nation’s higest court granted petition for a writ of certiorari filed by Plaintiffs, the pharmaceutical sales representative, in Christopher et al. v. SmithKline Beecham Corporation.
The Court will decide the following two questions:
(1) Whether deference is owed to the Secretary’s interpretation of the Fair Labor Standards Act’s outside sales exemption and related regulations; and
(2) Whether the Fair Labor Standards Act’s outside sales exemption applies to pharmaceutical sales representatives.
The Circuits are split over the question how to classify pharmaceutical sales representatives under the Fair Labor Standards Act and the meaning of the term “sales” in Section 3(k) of the FLSA. The issues here are of high importance to the pharmaceutical industry. The decision of the Court will affect tens of thousands of PSRs across the country and will provide the industry with clear and uniform guidelines regarding the proper classification of PSRs for purporses of overtime entitlement under the federal labor law.