Labor & Employment
In a decision issued on August 31, 2017, federal district Judge Amos Mazzant struck down as invalid the Department of Labor’s (DOL) new overtime exemption rule which planned to significantly increase the salary threshold under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). As explained further below, a welcome decision for employers is also leaving DOL’s path toward a new overtime threshold in question.
In a recent ruling, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has shed light on the scope of an employee’s right to union representation at an investigatory interview conducted by the employer. The prior case of NLRB v. J. Weingarten, Inc., 420 U.S. 251, 256 (1975) confirmed that an employee must be allowed to bring a union representative to any investigatory interview that he or she is required to attend, if the employee reasonably believes that the interview could result in disciplinary action.
In 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) Wage and Hour Division launched an aggressive enforcement initiative aimed at ensuring companies in the restaurant and food service industry comply with the federal minimum wage, overtime, and record-keeping requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). Plaintiff-side employment lawyers took note immediately and began advertising to their target audience. It is not surprising, therefore, that servers, bartenders, and seasonal or event staff have advanced employee complaints based on alleged improper wage- and tip-payment practices with increased frequency, exposing the restaurant industry’s unique vulnerability to the complex and nuanced requirements of the statute.
Effective August 1, 2017, the Service Contract Act (“SCA”) health and welfare (“H&W”) benefit amount increased from $4.27 per hour to $4.41 per hour. Each time the H&W rate increases, we get a number of questions regarding how to implement these new rates. It does not take long for word to spread that employees may be entitled to additional benefit monies.
On Wednesday, June 7, 2017, Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta announced that the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) would be withdrawing two Administrative Interpretations issued during the previous administration regarding joint employers and independent contractors....