As often discussed in this space and elsewhere, Courts continue to widely differ in their analysis as to whether the administrative and/or outside sales exemptions are applicable to pharmaceutical sales representatives. Now, the Supreme Court will have another opportunity to weigh in on the applicability of the outside sales exemption to such employees, as the plaintiffs in Christopher v. SmithKline Beecham Corp., 635 F.3d 383 (9th Cir. 2011) have petitioned the Court to review the Ninth Circuit’s decision finding them to be properly classified as outside salespersons. Christopher, et al. v. SmithKline, Supreme Court Docket No. 11-204.

While acceptance of the petition and a ruling from the high court would hopefully provide welcome clarity in this area, even a resolution by the Supreme Court of the circuit split between Christopher and the Second Circuit’s decision in In Re Novartis will not resolve all outstanding issues relating to the classification of these employees, as Courts continue to differ on the applicability of the administrative exemption.