This spring, employers are expecting to learn about the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL's) proposed changes to the overtime rule. It's anyone's guess how high the DOL may want to raise the salary level threshold for the white-collar exemptions to the rule, but it could be quite high.
The reason for delays in releasing the proposed rule is unclear, as well. Some think it might be an indication that changes to the duties tests for exemptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) will be recommended.
The rule update was first announced in spring 2022. The most recent regulatory agenda then stated the proposed rule will be released in May. The department is not required to release the proposed rule by then, however, and regulatory agenda projections for the release of rules are often missed.
"With inflation being what it is, and so many states having minimum hourly wage rates that far exceed the FLSA rate, I think it is likely we will see some aggressive increases proposed by the Biden DOL," said Jim Coleman ...
That would result in significantly more workers qualifying to earn overtime pay, noted Jeff Ruzal, an attorney with Epstein Becker Green in New York City.
The current threshold is $684 per week, which equates to $35,568 annually.
In 2016, the Obama administration tried to raise the threshold to $913 per week—$47,476 annually—and institute automatic adjustments every three years, but a federal judge blocked the rule, declaring it unlawful.