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Final DOL Overtime Regulations Getting Closer…

on Thursday, 31 March 2016 in Labor & Employment Law Update: Sarah M. Huyck, Editor

On March 14, 2016, the Department of Labor (“DOL”) sent its final draft of the final overtime regulations to the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) to begin the last stage of the review process. Once the document receives OMB approval, which typically takes 30-60 days, the regulations will be released. Indeed, it is possible that we may see the final rules as soon as late April.

For those of you keeping track, this is all occurring much faster than the DOL’s original estimate of releasing the regulations in July. Such expedited action is not without significance. Specifically, if the regulations are published early, the DOL potentially avoids a possible congressional override. The Congressional Review Act gives Congress sixty (60) legislative days to rescind “major” final rules, such as the final overtime regulations through a joint resolution. If the rules are submitted too late (i.e., when there are fewer than 60 legislative days left), then the next Congress would have 60 legislative days to act on the rule. Obviously, in an election year such as this, the timing becomes extremely important due to potential changes in the make-up of Congress. Similarly, because the President can veto any joint resolution such as this—which President Obama would surely do—if a Republican president is elected, any efforts to rescind the rules may move forward—to the current administration’s chagrin.

For now, employers should use the time prior to the final rules’ release to prepare for the potential increase in the salary level for exempt employees, as the final rules will likely become effective 60 days after they are published.
We will be discussing the final rules—whether in proposed form, or the final rules (if released)—at Baird Holm’s Labor Law Forum on May 5. You can register for this event here.

Kelli P. Lieurance

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