Since before last Thanksgiving, when a Texas federal court judge blocked the new federal overtime rules from taking effect as planned on Dec. 1, 2016, business owners have been left in limbo over how they may be affected. The rules require employers to pay overtime to eligible salaried workers earning less than $47,476 a year, which is twice the existing annual threshold of $23,660. Some business owners raised salaries in anticipation of the rules taking effect, while others chose to sit back and wait.
Although the Department of Labor notice of appeal was granted—and given an expedited timeline—by the U.S. Court of Appeals, a ruling has yet to be delivered. Now, with a new administration freshly in office, the future of the rules may be even murkier, leaving many business owners to ask: What do we do now?
It’s important to have a plan in place for if and when the rules do go into effect.
This is what I’ve told my clients from the beginning of this saga, and it’s the advice I’ll continue to give until we know more. Although many pundits think the Trump Administration will repeal part or all of the rules, there hasn’t been an official statement on the matter. It’s also worth noting that most do agree that the overtime wage limit is out of date; it hasn’t been adjusted in roughly a quarter-century. It’s likely that some kind of change will be forthcoming. Of course, we at DS+B will continue to monitor the status of the ruling and any related developments, so we can keep our clients informed.
In the meantime, we recommend taking the time to fully understand how the new overtime rules—if put into effect in their current form—could impact your business. The next thing on your to-do list should be to establish a plan for how you will comply if the rules become effective. For instance, will you raise salaries? Reduce the hours of certain workers? Modify job duties? If you’re not sure where to start, your DS+B advisor can help. In addition to helping you evaluate various scenarios relating to the new rules, we can guide you in determining which actions make the most sense for you—and your bottom line.