The Obama-Era Overtime Rule Stalls
As we previously reported, a federal district judge’s invalidation of the Obama-era overtime rules – which proposed a sharp increase in the salary threshold for exempt employees, expanding overtime pay to millions of workers – did not doom the possibility of changes to the minimum salary requirements. Last week, on October 30, the Department of Labor filed a notice of appeal of the decision. The notice comes after the DOL started the rulemaking process to replace Obama’s Rule with a new rule increasing the current minimum salary level by about 50% (to around $33,000). If this became effective, it would be a significant departure from the Obama-era Rule, which doubled the minimum salary level to $47,476. The DOL is expected to issue the new proposed rule in the coming months. READ MORE
Today, mobile technology allows many exempt employees to work remotely and perform work outside traditional working hours. Some commentators assert that the smartphone has stretched the traditional 9-to-5 workday into a 24/7 on-call period, where employees are expected to respond to work-related communications long after they leave the office and late into the night. The expectation that employees will be available to respond on evenings and weekends, however, has sparked pushback, causing some employees to call for more work-life separation and the ability to “unplug.” In France, this push to unplug recently resulted in a new law that gives employees a “right to disconnect.” Under that law, many French employers soon will be required to implement rules governing work-life balance and reasonable use of digital tools.