FLSA Overtime Changes Are (Finally) Coming. Here’s What You Can Expect Over The Next Few Months

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The new overtime rule, which would have doubled the existing overtime threshold, was postponed indefinitely — just days before it’s December 1 effective date.

For the past four months, business owners everywhere have been waiting with bated breath for the final ruling.

Unfortunately, they’ll have to wait just a little bit longer.

The Trump administration has yet to take a side when it comes to the new overtime rule — so to speak. President Trump’s DOL has until May 1 to make a final decision. The Trump administration requested and received the May 1 delay in hopes the new Labor Secretary (likely Alexander Acosta) will weigh in.

Acosta’s confirmation hearing was delayed once, but is now scheduled for March 22. And experts believe he will sail through the confirmation process and eliminate any further delays to this ruling.

So, what can you expect?

Tammy D. McCutchen, president at Littler Mendelson and member of President Trump’s transition team, has a few predictions.

It’s possible that the DOL will drop its appeal in hopes that the rule is permanently enjoined by the lower court. However, this seems unlikely. A group of labor organizations has asked to take over defending the overtime rule if the DOL bows out.

With that in mind, McCutchen said she would like to see the DOL issue a new final rule — one that would nullify the old final rule. She recommends that the DOL consider a slightly lower overtime threshold of $35,000 – $38,000 (rather than the proposed $47,467) and eliminate the automatic yearly increases.

However, no matter which side Acosta chooses to take, McCutchen doesn’t expect to see any changes to the overtime rule in the next few months.

Are employers safe to change affected employees back to “exempt”?

“I would wait a little bit,” McCutchen advises. Business owners can expect to have more information one to two months after Acosta’s presumed confirmation.

In short, yes, changes are coming, just … not yet.


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