How Will the New Overtime Rules Play Out? Here’s How You Can Be Heard

By Eric B. Meyer

A lot has been written over the past week few weeks since the U.S. Department of Labor announced its proposed change to the overtime rules.

Both sides of overtime coin

For example, there’s this article I read yesterday on The Washington Post website supporting the Labor Department’s proposal. The authors suggest that, while the new changes in the overtime rules may result in less overtime worked and may not spike the earnings of the current workforce, the new rules may create over 100,000 new straight-time (hourly) jobs.

Chris Opfer, writing for Bloomberg Law, reports that during panel discussions yesterday with Capitol Hill staffers, advocates for the new overtime rules noted that companies risk cratering employee morale and decreased employee productivity if they try to convert salaried employees to hourly workers, and drop the hourly rate to offset the effect of paying overtime to previously exempt employees.

Another report from the National Retail Federation suggests that the new overtime rules will end up costing employers billions. I may not be the smartest employment-lawyer blogger in the world, but I know that when employee overhead rises, business will need to compensate in other ways, such as with fewer new hires, or layoffs, or business closures.

Time to be heard

If you feel strongly about the new proposed overtime rules, we are in the midst of a 60-day comment period before the proposal is finalized. If you want to comment on the proposed changes, you can do so here. If you operate a business and you need some help with talking points, SHRM has your back here.

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I’d also like to hear from you in the comments down below.

The final regulations won’t go into effect until sometime in 2016. But, when they do, I can’t imagine any other change in the law having a greater impact on your workplace.

This was originally published on Eric B. Meyer’s blog, The Employer Handbook.

You know that scientist in the action movie who has all the right answers if only the government would just pay attention? Eric B. Meyer, Esq. gets companies HR-compliant before the action sequence. Serving clients nationwide, Eric is a Partner at FisherBroyles, LLP, which is the largest full-service, cloud-based law firm in the world, with approximately 210 attorneys in 21 offices nationwide. Eric is also a volunteer EEOC mediator, a paid private mediator, and publisher of The Employer Handbook (www.TheEmployerHandbook.com), which is pretty much the best employment law blog ever. That, and he's been quoted in the British tabloids. #Bucketlist.

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1 Comment on “How Will the New Overtime Rules Play Out? Here’s How You Can Be Heard

  1. The only bone I have to pick with you on this is the assumption that businesses will be forced to cut hiring or other things if they have to spend more on OT. That was said every single time there was discussion about raising the minimum wage, and has pretty much never turned out to be the case, at least not on a big scale. $15 hasn’t put Seattle companies out of business, for example, nor is unemployment sky high as a result of the change.

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