The Department of Labor requires exempt employees to be paid a salary of not less than $455/week or $23,660/year.
The most common exempt employees are:
Many other kinds of employees are also exempt from the FLSA. It's your employer's task to determine whether or not you're exempt, based on your salary and job duties. The more responsibility and independent authority you've got, the more likely you are to be exempt. Your status depends on your actual duties, not on your job title.
If you're an exempt employee and your pay is "docked" for missed time at work--that is, if wages are subtracted from your paycheck--you might become nonexempt. As an exempt employee, you should be paid on a salary basis. This means you have to be paid your full salary if you do any work at all in a specific workweek. There are a couple exceptions to this rule, though. Suppose you're already used up all your vacation and sick time, and then one morning you fall down and twist your ankle. You can't drive, so you miss a few more days at work. Since you haven't got any leave left, your wages can be reduced for the extra days you missed. Also, if you take time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act, you pay can legally be docked.
Special rules apply to state and local government employees. Since they are "public servants," they're often held to stricter schedules than employees of private companies. In some areas the law requires that their wages be docked for any absences from work, even absences that last less than a full day. Sometimes a state or local government will close some of its offices or reduce its staff temporarily to save money. When this happens, the government can dock the paychecks of employees who aren't working These employees are still exempt, except during the period of time they've been told not to show up at their jobs.
If you're an exempt employee, your employer shouldn't dock your pay for less than a day's absence from work. If your employer does this, you're not being treated as an exempt employee. You might become nonexempt as a result, when means you'd have to be paid for any overtime that you work.
From time to time, you might have to leave work temporarily because of jury duty, service as a witness in a court of law, or military obligations. Your wages can't be reduced as a result of any such service that lasts less than a week, if you do some work during the week.