Department of Labor Announces Listening Sessions for Expected Overtime Regulation Revision

The Department of Labor (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced a series of listening sessions to hear from stakeholders about anticipated overtime regulations. The listening sessions for employers are organized by geographic area and run from May 13 to June 3, 2022. The public can review the WHD calendar and register for sessions on the DOL website. During the listening sessions, DOL will not discuss specific language but will simply receive input from the public.

The DOL WHD Spring Regulatory Agenda anticipates the issuance of proposed rulemaking late spring or early summer 2022 to review and revise the minimum wage and overtime exemption regulation. The overtime exceptions cover bona fide executive, administrative, professional employees, outside sales, and computer professionals. DOL committed in prior rulemakings to “update the standard salary level and Highly Compensated Employees (HCE) total compensation levels more frequently. Regular updates promote greater stability, avoid disruptive salary level increases that can result from lengthy gaps between updates and provide appropriate wage protection.”

Obama Administration 2016 regulations increased the minimum salary threshold for professional exemption under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) from $23,660 to $47,476; those regulations were subject to litigation. Prior to the 2016 regulations, the minimum level had not been updated since 2004. The Obama regulations were rescinded and replaced with the current regulation that sets the minimum salary level at $35,308 per year. TechServe Alliance Mark Roberts submitted comments during the previous rulemaking focusing on the computer professional exemption.

The TechServe Government Affairs Team participated in a March 25, 2022, listening session hosted by the Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy. Next week, we will report on that roundtable and provide some suggestions regarding employer comments that might be helpful to DOL and SBA.