U.S. Senate Committee Votes to Block New DOL Overtime Regulations</b>

UPDATE: <br>U.S. Senate Committee Votes to Block New Department of Labor Overtime Regulations

Despite the Department of Labor's issuance of the new Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) regulations in final form on April 23, 2004 and the compliance deadline expiring on August 23, 2004, there has been a flurry of congressional activity in an attempt to derail the regulations. A U.S. Senate committee voted on September 15, 2004 to block the regulations that labor groups are claiming would prevent six million American workers from receiving overtime pay. The Republican-run Senate Appropriations Committee approved the provision blocking the rules by a vote of 16-13. The bill contains language similar to a bill that passed in the House earlier in September. Despite this late-stage maneuvering, the provision could disappear when House-Senate negotiators draft a final version of the spending bill to which it was attached. Further, the White House has threatened to veto the bill. In the meantime, employers should continue to bring their policies and practices into compliance with the new FLSA regulations, since the DOL's compliance deadline has already passed. Please continue to check our website for new developments. If you have questions or would like additional information on how these regulations may impact your company, please contact David J. Houston at 517-487-4777 or dhouston@dickinsonwright.com. PREVIOUS UPDATE: August 31, 2004 Department of Labor Issues Final Overtime Regulations: Grace Period Expired; Immediate Compliance by Employers Required On August 23, 2004, the grace period in which employers had to become compliant with the new (and much-debated) Fair Labor Standards Act regulations expired. These FLSA rules effected sweeping changes in this antiquated regulatory scheme and will have far-reaching repercussions for employers and workers throughout the nation. The regulations significantly revamp existing DOL rules on overtime eligibility and pay, and represent the first major update to key portions of the regulations in 50 years. Employers must determine how the new regulations affect their employment practices, what policies may need to be modified, and where employee reclassifications may be beneficial or required. For full background information, please see the May 6 newsletter at the link below.