We know that labor and employment is only one component of the numerous responsibilities placed in the hands of in-house counsel and human resource personnel. Our goal with The Timekeeper is to take some of the burden off your shoulders by utilizing our resources to keep a watchful eye on the important wage and hour issues that could affect you and your employees, and providing you with a quarterly resource that can assist you in staying current.
During the Obama administration the Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division took an expansive interpretation of the law and focused heavily on enforcement. A number of the DOL's initiatives were challenged in court by business groups. The pendulum is swinging the other way under the Trump administration, where it appears there will be more emphasis on education and voluntary compliance.
In the face of a stalemate in Congress on wage and hour issues such as an increase in the minimum wage, state and local governments have acted on their own. As of January 1, 2018, there are 29 states with a higher minimum wage than the federal minimum with upward pressure from organizations like Fight For $15.
There has been an explosion of class and collective action wage-and-hour lawsuits filed in federal and state courts by the plaintiffs' bar which is expected make up for any reduction in regulation or enforcement under the Trump administration. Wage and hour compliance and litigation are major concerns for the business community.
In the coming months a number of developments are expected that will impact wage and hour law including: rulemaking on tips, a new overtime rule, and a U.S. Supreme Court decision on the enforceability of class and collective action waivers in arbitration agreements.