In this issue, I provide information about changes in the implementation of the Fair Labor Standards Act.
On Nov. 22, a federal judge issued a temporary injunction halting the new Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) rule that was scheduled to go into effect Dec. 1. This action was a surprise to most parties tracking this issue, given the late date and the impact on the process for so many entities. It has created significant regulatory uncertainty across the country.
On Dec. 1, the Department of Labor (DOL) notified the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas that it plans to file an appeal with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals challenging the District Court’s temporary injunction.
The possible outcomes of the temporary injunction range from the court of appeals siding with the DOL, to possible changes to the new rule at some future time, to the new rule never being instituted. With a new administration taking office on Jan. 20, 2017, it is very difficult to predict the final outcome.
Decision moving forward
University leadership consulted with many universities, local entities and others to determine logical steps to take as we move forward in this uncertain environment. Some had implemented their plans as early as October and continue to move forward, many have placed a hold on implementation and others have decided to implement a hybrid version of their original plan.
Based on this input and internal considerations, the university has decided to suspend implementation of a portion of FLSA-related changes until resolution of this issue becomes clear.
Details for employees returning to exempt status
Employees who were reclassified as “professional non-exempt” and began tracking hours worked as of Nov. 16, will return to “exempt” status effective Nov. 16. As a result:
- You will not need to submit a timesheet for Nov. 16-Dec. 15.
- You will need to resume completing a monthly leave report; these may not be immediately available.
- You will need to complete a leave report for Nov. 16-30 by Dec. 15.
Employees who received an increase in salary effective Dec. 1 will retain those raises.
Employees returning to exempt status will receive a communication this week from human resources explaining these changes in more detail.
University leadership will continue to monitor the situation as it unfolds, and will communicate any resulting changes.
Thanks for all you do for Missouri State!