Starting last summer, employers began preparing to comply with the Obama administration’s revisions to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) regulations for the executive, administrative, and professional overtime exemptions (“white collar” exemptions). If implemented, the revised overtime rule would dramatically expand the number of workers eligible for overtime pay and would impact most U.S. employers.

As Hurricane Harvey strengthens and threatens Texas and the Gulf Coast, it’s a good time for Texas employers to consider potential pay-related issues that can arise from inclement weather. Be it rising floodwaters or hurricanes in the Gulf (and the endless news coverage of the same), here are 5 tips to help your business when employees are absent due to inclement weather.
Continue Reading Employee Pay During Inclement Weather: Five Tips to Stay Afloat

Internal pay audits are rarely enjoyable. Depending on the scope, these audits can be complex and require detailed analysis.  However, in the current legal climate, an internal audit can be extremely valuable and greatly reduce, or even eliminate, potential liability for wage and hour claims as well as pay equity claims.  As previously reported on this blog, increased scrutiny into pay equity discrimination, changes in EEO-1 reporting requirements, the Department of Labor’s joint employment efforts, and the updated FLSA exemption rules continue to place companies at greater risk of government audits, fines, and lawsuits.

Many employers may have already reviewed and updated their policies in anticipation of the changes to the “white collar” FLSA exemptions, which go into effect on December 1, 2016. But if your company has not yet done so, or to the extent you have not conducted a more comprehensive internal audit, your company should strongly consider doing so as soon as possible for several reasons.
Continue Reading Don’t Wait! Now Is the Time to Conduct an Internal Wage & Hour Audit

As discussed in a prior post, the Department of Labor’s new overtime regulations increase the weekly minimum salary threshold an employee must be paid to maintain exempt status under the FLSA’s “white collar” exemptions. The Final Rule, which becomes effective December 1, 2016, could affect up to 4.2 million employees according to DOL estimates. But an employer hoping to classify its employees as exempt need not meet the new threshold entirely through base salary. Instead, the new regulations allow employers to use bonuses, commissions, and incentive payments to satisfy up to 10% of the minimum salary threshold.
Continue Reading “Catching Up” on Exempt Status—Using Bonuses and Incentive Payments to Meet the FLSA’s New Salary Threshold

On May 18, 2016, the Department of Labor finalized its highly anticipated overtime rule that updates the Fair Labor Standards Act’s “white collar” exemptions (including the executive, administrative, and professional exemptions) and the highly compensated employee exemption. Most notably, the Final Rule significantly increases the minimum salary an employee must earn to qualify for these exemptions. With an effective date of December 1, 2016, companies must understand the new Final Rule and take the appropriate steps to comply.
Continue Reading DOL Issues Final Overtime Rule—Are Your Exempt Employees Still Exempt?

Wage and hour claims have exploded over the past several years.  Now, with the U.S. Department of Labor’s proposed changes to the salary and duties tests for determining exempt status, it doesn’t appear that wage and hour litigation will slow down any time soon.  What will the DOL’s proposed changes mean for employers?  What can be done to decrease the risk of litigation?  What strategies should employers adopt to evade wage and hour class actions?

Please join us for a July 29, 2015 webinar in which we will discuss:

  • The DOL’s proposed heightened qualification standards for exempt status
  • Current state-level exemption requirements
  • Mooting wage and hour claims
  • Class action waivers and mandatory arbitration policies

Continue Reading Webinar Series (July 29, 2015) – The Proposed FLSA Amendments: What They Mean and How to Respond

The Department of Labor’s much talked about proposed overtime rule, which would make nearly five million additional workers eligible for overtime, was published in the Federal Register today, July 6.  The proposed rule would amend the Fair Labor Standards Act regulations by more than doubling the minimum salary threshold for the exemptions covering “white collar” employees, including certain executive, administrative, professional, outside sales, and computer employees.  The administration is hoping the changes will result in higher wages for millions of workers. The impact the proposed rule will have, of course, is up for debate.
Continue Reading Proposed Overtime Rule Could Impact Millions of Employees