HR Tip: Law and Guidance Updates – Duncan Financial Group
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HR Tip: Law and Guidance Updates

Law gavel on a stack of American money

HR Tip: Law and Guidance Updates

CDC guidance on COVID-19

Employers can say goodbye to the five-day isolation periods and begin treating COVID-19 like they treat other respiratory illnesses. Last month, the CDC issued new guidance that says people who are sick with a respiratory virus, including COVID-19, should stay home and away from others until at least 24 hours after both their symptoms are getting better overall and they have not had a fever (and are not using fever-reducing medication). Because some people may remain contagious after this period, the CDC recommends precautions for the following five days, including wearing masks, improving ventilation, and limiting close contact with others to reduce the spread of the illness.

For healthcare industry employers, the Respiratory Virus Guidance does not apply to healthcare settings. Updated recommendations were issued March 18.

NLRB new joint employer rule vacated

On March 8, 2024, a Texas judge vacated the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) new joint employer rule, which set a much broader standard for determining joint-employer status than the Board’s 2020 rule, in a lawsuit filed by a coalition of industry associations, led by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. While it’s expected the NLRB will appeal the decision, for now, an employer is only considered a joint employer of a separate employer’s employees if the two businesses share or co-determine the employees’ essential terms and conditions of employment. Plus, a business must possess and exercise substantial direct and immediate control over the employees’ essential terms and conditions of employment.

DOL Wage and Hour Division overtime rule

The Department of Labor (DOL) overtime rule is expected to be released this month. The most significant changes are:

    1. Increase the standard salary exemption level from $684 to $1,059 per week ($55,068 annually)
    2. Increase the highly compensated employee total annual compensation requirement from $107,432 to $143,988 per year
    3. Automatically update these earnings thresholds every three (3) years with current wage data to maintain their effectiveness.

While legal challenges are expected, until there is action that sets the rule aside, employers should be prepared to comply. Review all exempt employees to see if any of them make below the proposed salary threshold of $55,068 per year. Decide whether to increase their salary to the required threshold to continue their exempt status or to reclassify them as non-exempt. If reclassified, ensure all hours worked are properly recorded, pay overtime for all hours worked over 40 in a workweek, set hours expectations, and develop policies for approval of overtime.

This is a federal rule. Employers need to comply with both federal and applicable state laws.

Justice Department issues new fact sheet on Discrimination and Form I-9 software programs

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has issued a new Employer Fact Sheet alerting employers about avoiding unlawful discrimination and other Form I-9 violations when using commercial or proprietary programs to electronically complete I-9s and participate in E-Verify.

Schedule an appointment with a financial professional for more information regarding law and guidance updates.