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BT Currents - Hot Topics in Employment Law

09 Nov Do You Pay Overtime for On-Call Work? A Cautionary Tale

Many employers are intimidated by the myriad rules, regulations and exemptions contained within the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). History shows they have every reason to be: mistakes are super easy to make and can be very costly for a business – both in terms of the bottom line and bad publicity.   A new case out of Ohio this week regarding overtime for an on-call employee provides a timely reminder of how important it is for employers to make sure they fully understand the…

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27 Jul F is for Fluctuate: Overtime Pay And The Fluctuating Workweek (WTH is FWW?)

While speaking with a client recently about the vast sea of FLSA regulations, a question arose about the use of half-time pay. FLSA’s golden rule for non-exempt employees is one that sounds familiar to many: time-and-a-half pay for hours worked over 40 in a workweek. But what about just half-pay? There is an alternative approach to meeting the FLSA’s overtime requirements that allows employers to pay non-exempt employees on a fixed salary basis. The Department of Labor dubs this method the “Fluctuating Workweek” (or FWW,…

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27 Jun Will There Be An Epic Backlash?

By now, most have heard about the U.S. Supreme Court’s May 21, 2018 opinion in Epic Systems Corporation v. Lewis. Epic actually decided a trio of consolidated cases before the high court and held, as a matter of law, that class action waivers within arbitration agreements are enforceable, that is, arbitration agreements between an employee and employer may prohibit the employee from participating in most claims against the employer other than through one-on-one arbitration.   Workers’ advocates are echoing Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s stinging dissent,…

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23 Apr Philadelphia U. S. District Court Determines Uber Drivers Are Independent Contractors

  On the heels of a San Francisco U.S. Magistrate Judge’s February 2018 ruling in Lawson v. Grubhub Inc. that Grubhub food delivery workers are independent contractors, Judge Michael Baylson of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania has held that Uber limousine drivers are likewise independent contractors under federal law. This is the first ruling regarding the classification of Uber drivers under federal law and it is surely to have a large impact on the ride-sharing industry.   The Philadelphia case,…

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18 Apr DOL Issues New Opinion Letters on Wage and Hour Issues – Compensability of Health-Related Rest Breaks

  The DOL recently issued three new Wage and Hour opinion letters on its website giving employers additional guidance on compensation for travel time, pay for health-related rest breaks as well as whether lump sum payments are subject to garnishments. This demonstrates the commitment of the DOL to re-establish the opinion letter program which was eliminated during the Obama administration.  Back in January, the DOL re-issued 17 opinion letters issued by the Bush administration nine years ago but which had been withdrawn during the Obama…

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