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Department of Labor’s Draft Final Overtime Rule Moves Closer to Release

By: Lisa M. Schonbeck, Esq.

On March 14, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (“DOL”) sent the draft final overtime regulation applicable to “white collar” (executive, administrative and professional) employees to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs within the White House’s Office of Management and Budget for review. This action marks one of the last steps in the process – once approved by the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, the DOL can (finally) publish a final rule.

We issued an alert about the proposed rule here. The most significant proposed change is to the salary threshold for the exemption for “white collar” employees – from $455 a week ($23,660 per year) to $970 a week ($50,440 per year). In connection with the proposed rule, the DOL also sought suggestions and comments on the current duties requirements, which set forth the primary duties employees must perform to be classified as exempt under the “white collar” exemption. To date, there has been no further guidance issued regarding whether and how the duties test may change.

Republican members of Congress have introduced legislation to block the proposed rule. The “Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act” would require the Secretary of Labor to nullify the proposal and conduct a full and complete economic analysis to determine its impact on small businesses and non-profits, among other employers, before promulgating any similar rule.

Leech Tishman’s Employment Practice Group has extensive experience advising clients on their obligations under the Fair Labor Standards Act and applicable state wage and hour laws, and will continue to monitor movement of the proposed rule and challenges thereto. We are available to assist your organization in understanding and preparing for the changes proposed by the rule.

Lisa M. Schonbeck is a Partner in the Employment and Litigation Practice Groups. She is based in the Pittsburgh office. Lisa can be reached at 412.261.1600 or lschonbeck@leechtishman.com.

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Leech Tishman Fuscaldo & Lampl is a full-service law firm dedicated to assisting individuals, businesses, and institutions. Leech Tishman offers legal services in alternative dispute resolution, bankruptcy & creditors’ rights, construction, corporate, employee benefits, employment, energy, environmental, safety & toxic torts, estates & trusts, family law, government relations, immigration, insurance coverage & corporate risk mitigation, intellectual property, internal investigations, international legal matters, litigation, real estate, and taxation. Headquartered in Pittsburgh, PA, Leech Tishman also has offices in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Wilmington, DE.