DOL Issues New Guidance On Joint Employment

Vincent Jackson
Vincent Jackson
01/21/2020
On January 16, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued a final rule that will significantly revise its longstanding interpretation of joint employer status under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  This update marks the first substantive change to the federal regulation concerning joint employer status (29 CFR Part 791) in over 60 years, and provides a new framework for assessing joint employer status when an employee performs work for...
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Reminder: Maryland Minimum Wage Increases January 1, 2020

Randi Klein Hyatt
Randi Klein Hyatt
12/31/2019
As we blogged about earlier this year, the General Assembly voted to override Governor Hogan's veto of legislation increasing the minimum wage.  This means the minimum wage in Maryland will increase to $15 per hour by 2025 for employers with 15 or more employees (and by 2026 for employers with less than 15 employees).  The increase is gradual, and tomorrow, January 1, 2020, the first increase will occur when the minimum wage will move to...
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Department of Labor Clarifies “Regular Rate”

Frank Kollman
Frank Kollman
12/19/2019
Most employers are familiar with the terms "minimum wage" and "hourly rate," but many are not familiar with the term "regular rate."  Because overtime compensation must be paid at one and a half times an employee's "regular rate," not "hourly rate," you should.  Let's start with an example of the difference. Assume an employee's hourly rate is $20.00 an hour, but he receives bonuses and commissions based on productivity.  His...
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Maryland Appellate Court Adopts Federal Overtime Standard

Eric Paltell
Eric Paltell
12/02/2019
Maryland's Wage and Hour Law is closely modeled on the federal Fair Labor Standards Act. Similar to the FLSA, Section 3-415 of the Maryland Labor and Employment Article requires that employers pay overtime at rate of "1.5 times the usual hourly wage."  A recent decision from the Maryland Court of Special Appeals held that, when an employee is paid a "day rate" (i.e., a fixed amount of money per day worked, without regard to the number of hours...
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DOL Rolls Out New and Proposed Rules Regarding FLSA Pay Requirements

Kollman & Saucier
Kollman & Saucier
11/11/2019
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently took two actions implicating and potentially implicating, respectively, how employees are paid under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). A New Rule First, on September 27, the DOL issued a final rule on implementing the exemptions from minimum wage and overtime pay requirements for executive, administrative, professional, outside sales, and computer employees.  In general, the FLSA requires...
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Employers: Don’t Be Part of the Department of Labor’s Statistics

Frank Kollman
Frank Kollman
10/30/2019
The Department of Labor is reporting that it collected $322 million in back wages for workers in fiscal year 2019, which is a record.  The amount collected in fiscal year 2018 was also a record at that time.  This should put to rest any concerns about DOL enforcement policies under a Republican administration. Most of the cases involved overtime compensation ($186 million), and about $40 million involved failure to pay minimum wage.  In any...
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Tell Us About Bad Wage and Hour Investigators Says Head of Wage and Hour Division

Frank Kollman
Frank Kollman
10/21/2019
The wage and hour laws are complicated, and rarely intuitive.  Technical violations of wage and hour laws are so common that no company can be absolutely positive that it is complying with all Department of Labor regulations, and the laws and regulations of states and local jurisdictions. In fact, these laws and regulations are so complicated that even the investigators hired to enforce them often interpret them incorrectly.  There are statutes,...
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"Not Willful" Is Not The Same As "No Bad Faith" - A Lesson In FLSA Liquidated Damages

Randi Klein Hyatt
Randi Klein Hyatt
08/06/2019
After a jury verdict was returned in favor of a group of Baltimore nightclub exotic dancers for their claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act and Maryland wage and hour law against the nightclub owner and the two nightclub entities, the presiding Magistrate Judge also awarded liquidated damages to the plaintiffs.  The club owner appealed on various grounds including questioning how the judge was able to award liquidated damages when the jury had...
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Department of Labor Opines That Gig Workers are Independent Contractors

On April 29, 2019, the Department of Labor’s (“DOL”) Wage and Hour Division issued an opinion letter (FLSA2019-6) stating that workers in the “gig” or “sharing” economy should be considered as independent contractors rather than employees.  This opinion letter, while limited to the specific facts of the anonymous company who requested it, has potentially wide-ranging consequences for the sharing economy as a whole. The DOL’s letter...
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Maryland Increases Minimum Wage to $15 Per Hour

Garrett Wozniak
Garrett Wozniak
04/01/2019
The Maryland General Assembly has voted to override Governor Larry Hogan’s veto of legislation increasing the minimum wage.  As a result, the minimum wage in the State will increase to $15 per hour by 2025 for employers with 15 or more employees and 2026 for employers with 14 or fewer employees. The minimum wage will gradually increase over the next six to seven years, depending on the size of the employer, with the first increase occurring on...
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