The New York Times reported this morning that President Obama will ask the United States Department of Labor to revamp its regulations on the so-called “white collar” exemptions to the federal overtime laws.

Specifically, he will direct the DOL “to require overtime pay for several million additional fast-food managers, loan officers, computer technicians and others

As the temperature starts to dip this week and our thoughts start turning from fall to winter, so starts slow climb up the absenteeism ladder.

Around many workplaces, flu shot clinics are starting to pop up.  Not surprisingly, studies show that flu shots reduce the rate of absenteeism.  (Employees who get vaccinated get sick

A reminder: Employees are entitled to overtime for work over 40 hours a week, unless an exemption applies. For so-called white collar workers, there are three main exemptions: administrative, professional and executive.  Each of these categories looks at whether the employee had certain covered “duties” (known as the “duties” test) and a minimum guaranteed weekly salary (known as the “salary” test).

Under federal law (but not state law), there is also an exemption that allows employers to not pay overtime to “highly compensated” employees over $100,000 a year.   These rules have been in place for nearly 10 years, but the regulations are far from clear.

A recent case out of the Second Circuit (Anani v. CVS) examined these exemptions and regulations. You can download the case here.

The case comes down to a fairly arcane part of the federal regulations addressing whether a “reasonable relationship” exists between the guaranteed amount an employee is supposed to receive and the amount actually earned.  The Second Circuit concludes that this section does not apply when workers make over $100,000 under the FLSA.

It’s a fairly straightforward conclusion because to apply that language to highly compensated workers would render the rest of the regulation pretty meaningless. Thus, a win for the employer.


Continue Reading Second Circuit Leaves Some FLSA Issues Up For Grabs

There are three major “white-collar” exemptions to the federal overtime rules that are, to some employers, a bit confusing to say the least.  One of them — the “executive” exemption — is mistakenly understood to just include, well, senior executives of a company.

A new case out by the Second Circuit (Ramos v. Baldor

The U.S. Supreme Court this morning ruled, 5-4, that pharmaceutical representatives are “outside salesmen” under the Fair Labor Standards Act.  In plain English, this now means that those representatives are now considered exempt from overtime.

Supreme Court

This decision is a big victory for pharmaceutical companies who have been

The bill's anti-retaliation provisions appear to apply to all "employees".

The U.S. Supreme Court yesterday heard arguments over whether pharmaceutical sales reprsentatives were properly classified as exempt (from overtime) because they fall within the “outside sales” exemption of the nation’s wage & hour laws.

The plaintiffs said that they were

As expected, the United States Department of Labor today released its proposed changes to the companionship and live-in worker regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act.  What was unknown was how significant the proposed changes would be.

The short answer: Pretty significant.  The regulations substantially limit the companionship exemption under wage & hour laws to

As employers in Connecticut know, state and federal laws differ when it comes to paying overtime. Some employees (like computer professionals) are exempt from overtime obligations under federal law, but not under state law.

The new Paid Sick Leave bill just makes a mess of this distinction even further.

How?

Well, the definition of “service