Join Us for a Webinar on the DOL’s Major Regulatory Initiatives in 2016 and 2017

On Wednesday March 22, 2017, Conn Maciel Carey Labor & Employment attorneys Jordan B. Schwartz and Daniel Deacon will be presenting a free webinar reviewing the major regulatory initiatives promulgated by the US Department of Labor (“DOL”) in 2016 and discussing what employers can expect from the DOL and other federal agencies in 2017.

As employers are undoubtedly aware, the DOL was extremely active in 2016 as President Obama’s second term came to a close.  From its attempt to more than double the threshold salary level to be classified as an exempt employee to requiring that employers provide paid sick leave for contractors, the DOL hit the employer community hard.  However, President Trump and Alexander Acosta, the nominee to be the new Secretary of Labor, will likely attempt to reign in the DOL’s significant activity as well as the activity of other Federal agencies.

This webinar will review the major regulations promulgated in 2016 and provide guidance and recommendations to ensure compliance in 2017.

The webinar begins at 1:00 pm ET.  You can register for the webinar here.  You can also register for Conn Maciel Carey’s entire 2017 Labor & Employment Webinar Series below:

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Texas Judge Blocks DOL Persuader Rule with Nationwide Permanent Injunction

persuaderOn November 16, 2016, a Texas federal judge permanently blocked the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) from enforcing its persuader rule in National Federation of Independent Business, et al. v. Thomas E. Perez, et al., Case No. 5:16-CV-066-C.  As we previously reported in a prior post, when the DOL published the final rule in March 2016, it imposed substantial reporting obligations on employers.  The old rule required disclosure of the use of an outside consultant if the consultant engaged in direct persuader activity, such as if the consultant directly communicates with employees about union representation.  The new rule, however, added reporting for indirect persuader activities; for example, providing communication materials to an employer to hand out to employees.  These types of activities typically, but not exclusively, arise in the context of a union organizing drive.

The DOL’s insistence on imposing stricter reporting requirements on employers stems from what the DOL perceived as a loophole in the Labor Management Reporting Continue reading

Federal Regulatory Activity Remains Active for Employers in 2016

2015 has been a busy year for government agencies in terms of Labor & Employment Rulemaking, and this trend will only continue into the New Year. Thus, as the holiday season swings into full gear and the end of 2015 is right around the corner, we want to take this opportunity update you on important Labor & Employment regulations rules that are set to be released in the coming months.

Rules issued by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division

  • Revisions to Overtime Regulation. Department of LaborAs we have previously explained here, the Wage & Hour Division (WHD) of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released proposed regulations that will dramatically expand the number of workers who could be eligible for overtime. Specifically, the WHD has proposed raising the minimum salary threshold for employees to be exempt from overtime from the current level of $455 per week to $970 per week, or $50,440 per year. In addition, the WHD is considering whether it should modify the existing “duties” test in order for a worker to be exempt from overtime. There have been nearly a quarter of a million comments submitted to the WHD regarding these new regulations. It is currently anticipated that the WHD will issue its final regulations in the summer of 2016.
  • Impact of the Use of Electronic Devices by Nonexempt Employees on Hours Worked. The DOL plans to issue a Request for Information (RFI) to gather information about employees’ use of electronic devices to perform work outside of regularly scheduled work hours and away from the workplace, as well as information regarding last minute scheduling practices being utilized by some employers that are made possible in large part by employees’ use of these devices. While this is not intended to become an actual rule at this time, the information gathered may be used to support some form of guidance in conjunction with the overtime regulation. The RFI is expected that to be issued in February 2016.
  • Regulations Requiring Federal Contractors to Provide Paid Sick Leave. Executive Order 13706 requires federal contractors and all levels of subcontractors to provide paid sick leave at the rate of one hour per every 30 hours worked, up to 7 days annually. Contractors include any company merely leasing space from the federal government such as a day care center in a federal office building. The Executive Order specifies the purposes for which this leave must be available, which include both the employee’s health and those of their family. The terms of when this leave can be used are taken directly from the Healthy Families Act, including making the leave available to deal with domestic violence. It is anticipated that a proposed regulation implementing this Executive Order will be issued in February 2016.

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