What to expect now that overtime pay rule changes have been put on hold?
Nine days before American businesses were to implement a new federal regulation for overtime pay a federal judge put the change on hold.
The changes were outlined in an earlier Associated Press story:
“Under the new rules, first released in draft form last summer, the annual salary threshold at which companies can deny overtime pay will be doubled from $23,660 (or $440 a week) to nearly $47,746 (or $913 a week). That would make 4.2 million more salaried workers eligible for overtime pay. Hourly workers would continue to be mostly guaranteed overtime.”
So what are businesses supposed to do – especially when a different administration is coming to power?
It depends on whether or not you’ve already implemented the changes, which some businesses and institutions have already done.
“If you’ve already made the changes, you’re in a tough position. There’s no requirement for now saying the changes must remain intact, but if you start walking back salaries you’ll have an issue with morale in the workplace,” said Will Griffis, attorney with the McCleskey Law Firm, who specializes in labor and employment law.
If you have not made the changes?
“No harm can come from being ready to implement the changes if the stay is lifted,” said Griffis. “It’s smart to keep looking into it if the stay is lifted so you can make a quick turnaround.”
What does Griffis think will happen to the Obama Administration rule once Donald Trump is sworn in as president?
“Trump says he’s against regulations holding down small businesses. Unless the current stay is overturned on appeal (which the Obama Administration filed Dec. 2) I would expect Trump not to implement the regulations as currently written. I believe there will be some increase in minimum salary requirement at some point, but I believe there will be a more gradual increase in the minimum salary requirement than what was proposed by the Obama Administration,” he said.
“Should the stay remain it will be interesting to see how the Trump Administration handles future revised overtime pay regulations while balancing interests of the middle class and businesses,” said Griffis.