Update: The U.S. Labor Dept. (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) officially submitted its Request for Information (RFI) on July 25. The full text of the RFI can be viewed here. Key questions, summarized below, include:
- (Question 1): What methodology should DOL use to set a new threshold?
- (Question 2): Should the reg contain multiple salary levels (separated by industry, region, etc.)?
- (Question 3): Should the reg contain different salary levels for different exemptions (i.e. administrative, professional, executive)?
- (Question 5): At what salary level does the duties test no longer fulfill its historical role in determining exempt status?
- (Question 6): Did you make changes for the Dec. 1, 2017, effective date and, if so, have you reversed course?
- (Question 7): Should DOL do away with the minimum threshold concept altogether?
- (Question 11): Should the standard salary level and the highly compensated employee total annual compensation level be automatically updated on a periodic basis?
Starting July 26, employers have until Sept. 25 to provide input on these questions.
- The U.S. Labor Dept.'s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) sent a formal Request for Information (RFI) related to the overtime rule to the White House's Office of Management and Budget, the agency announced June 27. The rule, a cornerstone of the Obama administration's labor agenda, would have more than doubled the Fair Labor Standards Act's overtime salary threshold to the equivalent of $47,476, drastically expanding the number of employees eligible for overtime pay.
- The RFI will likely ask employers who adjusted their wages in anticipation of the rule's passage to identify what the economic burden has been, says Seyfarth Shaw.
- The rule is before the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, following a legal challenge from states and business groups.
DOL officially abandoned its defense of changes to the overtime rule in late June. Under President Obama, the department appealed a federal judge's injunction that halted the rule late last year, putting it in limbo for several months. President Trump's DOL is expected to decide whether it will continue defending the rule by June 30.
A reverse course by DOL would signal a massive shift from the pro-labor Obama administration era to a pro-business stance with the full backing of Trump and the GOP.
Employers who wish to have a voice in the process will be able to submit comments now that the RFI will be published July 26 in the Federal Register. The commentary period will run until Sept. 25.