The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), like other agencies in the current administration, is prioritizing deregulation and making processes less burdensome for business and industry leaders. Toward that end, watch for action on the following issues in 2020:
- Defending the new overtime rule. There is still much debate about changes to the federal Fair Labor Standard’s Act’s (FLSA) “white-collar” exemptions from overtime pay, and worker advocates say that the threshold still isn’t high enough.
- Expanding apprenticeship programs. A new rule would create a process to establish apprenticeship programs available to certified industry groups, schools, nonprofit organizations, and unions. These would be mostly free from regulatory oversight.
- Updating fluctuating workweek rules. DOL recently opened proposed updates for public comment. The comment period ends on December 5.
- Updating “regular rate” calculations. A proposed FLSA update would change the definition of the “regular rate” of pay used to calculate overtime premiums.
- Clarifying the joint-employer rule. DOL has proposed a multifactor test to determine if businesses are joint employers and share liability for wage/hour violations.
- Allowing online benefit plan disclosures. A proposal out of the Employee Benefits Security Administration would provide specific retirement plan disclosures online instead of by mail.