DOL Changes Policy on Wage and Hour Opinion Letters

At the same time that the Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division (WHD) is stepping up the heat on employers who misclassify workers as independent contractors, (See "Worker Misclassification Under Fire from Federal and State Agencies"), it has pulled back on its longstanding practice of offering guidance to employers seeking clarification on specific wage and hour issues.

In March, the WHD announced it would no longer issue opinion letters offering fact-specific guidance on issues under the Fair Labor Standards Act. In the past, both employers and unions have sought and received guidance on wage and hour questions, although the process was slow.

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Mary Swanton

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