white collar exemptions

Short of a successful (but highly unlikely) appeal, the Obama-era overtime rule is now officially no longer.  That rule would have required employers to pay employees a little more than $47,000 annually to qualify under one of the Fair Labor Standards Act’s white collar exemptions.  The rule was already in limbo when a Texas Federal district court judge temporarily prevented its enforcement just before Thanksgiving last year, and now that same judge has struck down the rule permanently just before another major American holiday.

 

Continue Reading Employers Receive Important Overtime Law News Just Before Labor Day

Written by Brendan Lowd

Just before Thanksgiving, a Texas federal court judge issued an injunction blocking the closely-watched new federal overtime rule from taking effect as scheduled on December 1, 2016.  As expected, the DOL is not going quietly into the night and the parties have engaged in a flurry of court filings as the fight, at least in part, concerning whether the new rule is lawful shifts to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

Continue Reading The Saga Continues on the Fate of the DOL’s Overtime Rule

Employers across the country woke up this morning to news that a Texas District Court judge has blocked the DOL’s overtime rule from taking effect on December 1, 2016.  This represents a stunning turn of events for employers. They will now be able to continue to treat as exempt from overtime “white collar” workers who are paid a salary of at least the current minimum level of $23,660 per year without raising their salary to the proposed new minimum of at least $47,476, as the new rule had required. But, anticipating the new rule taking effect on December 1, many employers had already re-classified employees as non-exempt or raised their salaries to maintain the exemption or communicated the anticipated changes to their workforce.  And even those employers who have waited until the last minute to ready themselves for compliance have been left scratching their heads as to next steps, now that the rule will not, at least for now, take effect.  This post explores the court’s decision and employer’s potential responses to it.

Continue Reading With DOL’s OT Rule Blocked, Employers Are Left Asking “What’s Next?”

Please join us on June 21st at 2:00 pm ET as we cover the new white-collar overtime rule.  This one-hour webinar will offer employers more than just a summary of the rule.  It will also offer unique insights on the rule’s impact, help employers navigate the complex issues that may arise when revisiting their classification decisions, and suggest best practices for making and implementing these decisions, including communicating them to the workforce prior to the December 1st effective date.

If you have any question you would like us to address, please email them to me at msarnold@mintz.com in advance of the webinar.  You can find our previous coverage on the blog on this issue here (and check back regularly for additional updates).

We hope you can join us!  Register here.

Mintz Levin is an approved CLE provider. This webinar is accredited in the following states: California (1.0 general credit) and New York (1.0 general credit).  Mintz Levin is also recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CPSM or SHRM-SCPSM. This webinar is valid for 1.0 PDC for the SHRM-CPSM or SHRM-SCPSM.

One of the few “wins” for employers under the DOL’s new overtime rule was that employers are now allowed to apply “nondiscretionary incentive payments” to meet up to 10 percent of the new salary threshold.  This change could prove very important for employers who pay employees on a commission basis or who use other incentive-based compensation.

But what qualifies as a nondiscretionary incentive payment?  What options do employers have in changing their compensation plans to ensure compliance with the new rule?  And what could be the unintended consequences of those changes?  This post looks at this new rule and attempts to answer some of those questions.

Continue Reading Handling Nondiscretionary Incentive Payments Under the New FLSA Overtime Rule

Over the course of this and next week, we will discuss the final overtime rule’s impact and address related workplace issues on which employers should focus in advance of its December 1st implementation date.  Today we focus on the rule’s impact on non-profits and educational institutions. 

On Wednesday of this week, the Department of Labor announced its Final Rule, which is aimed at expanding overtime eligibility for millions of American workers.  At its core, the final version of the rule doubled the minimum salary employers must pay “white collar” workers to maintain their exempt status.  See our post here for a summary of the new regulations.

But what does this mean for non-profits, including educational institutions, which may be harder hit by these changes than private sector employers?  In short, generally the same thing it means for any other employer.

Continue Reading Where do the DOL’s New FLSA White-Collar Overtime Regulations Leave Non-Profits and Educational Institutions?

The wait is over!  This morning, the Department of Labor announced its Final Rule, which is aimed at expanding overtime eligibility for millions of American workers.  At its core, the final version of the rule doubled the minimum salary employers must pay “white collar” workers to maintain their exempt status.  The final rule did not, however, make any change to the job duties test.

Over the course of this and next week, we will discuss the rule’s impact and address related workplace issues on which employers should focus in advance of the rule’s December 1st implementation date.  We will also host a webinar.  For now, we’ll briefly summarize the key provisions from the rule.

Continue Reading The DOL Releases Its Final Rule Updating the FLSA White-Collar Overtime Regulations

That’s what DOL Solicitor of Labor, M. Patricia Smith, reportedly said at the 2016 American Bar Association’s Midwinter Meeting.  But remember: she also said at another conference in November 2015 that the DOL was targeting a “late 2016” release date, while the DOL Labor Secretary, Thomas Perez, told Bloomberg BNA in December 2015 that he expected a spring 2016 release.  So which will it be?  Rest assured, we are keeping a very close eye on this and will keep you updated.

July 2016.  That’s when the final rule on the white collar overtime exemptions is expected to be published by the DOL – this according to the OMB’s Fall 2015 Unified Agenda and Regulatory Plan released last Thursday.  Just one week earlier the Solicitor of Labor, M. Patricia Smith, reportedly told attendees at a conference that the DOL was targeting a release in “late 2016.”

Thus, given the continued uncertainties surrounding the timing of the release, employers should continue to take steps now to prepare for any changes to the rule, which, in its current form, would dramatically increase the number of employees eligible for overtime pay.  We, of course, will continue to update you about any developments.

The Department of Labor’s proposed overhaul of the white-collar exemption overtime regulations, which could expand overtime eligibility to an estimated 4.6 million workers, may not go into effect on the breakneck timeline that employers feared.  According to the Wall Street Journal, the Solicitor of Labor recently indicated that the final rule likely will not be published before late 2016, which would give employers a much longer runway to prepare for the changes before they go into effect. The revelation is welcome news to many employers who were bracing for the rule to be published later this year or early 2016.

The DOL is currently proposing to more than double the minimum annual salary threshold, which hasn’t been updated since 2004, but it hasn’t said whether it will change the relevant job duties test along with the salary bump.  Given the high stakes, the DOL received more than 250,000 public comments on the proposed rule this summer.  We will continue to update you as we learn more.