New Florida Minimum Wage in 2017

October 21, 2016 at 7:49 pm | Posted in DOL, Employee, Employer, Employment Law, FLSA, Legal, New employment laws/amendments, wage & hour | Leave a comment

Directly from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s Website 

The 2017 Florida minimum wage is $8.10 per hour, effective January 1, 2017.

Florida law requires the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity to calculate a minimum wage rate each year. The annual calculation is based on the percentage increase in the federal Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers in the South Region for the 12-month period prior to September 1, 2016.

On November 2, 2004, Florida voters approved a constitutional amendment which created Florida’s minimum wage. The minimum wage applies to all employees in the state who are covered by the federal minimum wage.

Employers must pay their employees the hourly state minimum wage for all hours worked in Florida. The definitions of employer, employee, and wage for state purposes are the same as those established under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and its implementing regulations. Employers of tipped employees, who meet eligibility requirements for the tip credit under the FLSA, may credit towards satisfaction of the minimum wage tips up to the amount of the allowable FLSA tip credit in 2003. However, the employer must pay tipped employees a direct wage. The direct wage is calculated as equal to the minimum wage ($8.10) minus the 2003 tip credit ($3.02), or a direct hourly wage of $5.08 as of January 1, 2017.

Employees who are not paid the minimum wage may bring a civil action against the employer or any person violating Florida’s minimum wage law. The state attorney general may also bring an enforcement action to enforce the minimum wage. FLSA information and compliance assistance can be found at: http://www.dol.gov/dol/compliance/comp-flsa.htm.

Florida Statutes require employers who must pay their employees the Florida minimum wage to post a minimum wage notice in a conspicuous and accessible place in each establishment where these employees work. This poster requirement is in addition to the federal requirement to post a notice of the federal minimum wage. Florida’s minimum wage poster is available for downloading in English, Spanish, and Creole from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s website at: http://www.floridajobs.org.

The federal poster can be downloaded from the U.S. Department of Labor’s website at: http://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/flsa.htm.

Go to the Department of Economic Opportunity’s Bureau of Labor Market Statistics

http://www.floridajobs.org/labor-market-information

To see the webpage, go to:

http://www.floridajobs.org/docs/default-source/2017-minimum-wage/florida-minimum-wage-2017-announcement.pdf?sfvrsn=2

 

From Hultman Sensenig + Joshi:  As the poster is available, print it early and be ready to have this printed for posting.

 

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Time to Update your FLSA Poster!

August 28, 2016 at 2:01 pm | Posted in DOL, Employee, Employer, Employment Law, FLSA, FMLA, Legal, New employment laws/amendments, OSHA, retaliation, wage & hour | Leave a comment

The U.S. Department of Labor has updated the mandatory Fair Labor Standards Poster to include the need for employers to provide a safe and comfortable room for nursing mothers to express breast milk – that “safe and comfortable room” CANNOT be the Company’s bathroom.

The updated poster also touches on DOL’s hot button issue of correctly classifying independent contracts and what it means to be an exempt versus a non-exempt employee.

The DOL has also made it clear that APPLICANTS must also be able to see your FLSA poster so this results in likely having the mandatory poster in more than one place, such as in the reception area and in the break room.

There are also updated posters for the Family Medical Leave Act for all employers with 50 or more employees, and OSHA has an updated poster as well.  DOL has been very active lately!

Failure to post updated posters can result in fines:

The penalty for violating the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) posting requirement is $7,000;
An employer who violates any provision of the federal Employee Polygraph Protection Act of 1988, including the posting requirement, faces a fine of up to $10,000;
The penalty for failing to display the Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law posting (required for employers with 15 or more workers) increased to $210 in 2014; and,
Employers with 50 or more workers are required to display the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) notice, and the penalty for willful refusal to display it is $100;

A specific fine for failure to post is not always stated on the poster itself and the fines can be modified depending upon your state.

I have no doubt everyone reading this blog has better things to do with their money than pay fines for failure to comply with the posting requirement!  Get some thumb tacks and postal tape out and start making sure your posters are on display!  Do not shrink the posters, their size is mandatory!

Below is the web address to the updated DOL FLSA poster:

https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/posters/minwage.pdf

From Hultman Sensenig + Joshi: Reading this blog does not create an attorney client relationship nor is legal advice given in this blog. The overtime issues are very serious for employers and we do suggest reviewing your policies and procedures to prepare for the DOL’s recent enforcement efforts. Let us know if we can help you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

New litigation to stop the proposed DOL increases for the salary basis test – uncertainty continues to reign!

March 21, 2016 at 5:18 pm | Posted in DOL, Employee, Employer, Employment Law, FLSA, New employment laws/amendments, wage & hour | Leave a comment
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Below is the opening text for a Bill entitled “The Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act (S. 2707 and H.R. 4773)” which Bill is attempting to halt the proposed DOL salary basis increase for exempt employees.  The Bill’s purpose is to nullify the proposed rule and require DOL to conduct further analysis of the impact on small businesses, non-profits and public employers of raising the salary basis test from $23,660 annually to $50,440.00 annually.  Yes, that new amount is double the current amount!

114th Congress, 2d Session .H.R. _______

To require the Secretary of Labor to nullify the proposed rule regarding defining and delimiting the exemptions for executive, administrative, professional , outside sales, and computer employees, to require the Secretary of Labor to conduct a full and complete economic analysis with improved economic data on small businesses, nonprofit employers, Medicare or Medicaid dependent health care providers, and small governmental jurisdictions, and all other employers, and minimize the impact on such employers, before promulgating any substantially similar rule, and to provide a rule of construction regarding the salary threshold exemption under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, and for other purposes.

For the full Bill text, please go to:  http://edworkforce.house.gov/uploadedfiles/intro_bill_pwaoa.pdf

From Hultman Sensenig + Joshi:  The above and this blurb is not legal advice, nor does reading this blog create any attorney client relationship between the reader and this law firm.  Employers should be very aware of the significant impact this salary basis threshold proposed increase will have on their bottom line.  Reviewing job descriptions now and determining who is exempt v. non-exempt, and reviewing whether independent contractors are truly independent contractors in light of the economic realities test is something that is better proactively than reactively.  

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