DOL Issues Final Rule on Overtime Pay: How to Determine Eligible Employees and Calculate the Regular Rate

by Tim AustinMarch 9, 2020 8:00 AM

After years of proposed changes to overtime laws, the Department of Labor (DOL)’s new updates finally went into effect at the beginning of 2020. The new salary levels make roughly 1.3 million more workers eligible for overtime pay. This news means business owners across the country may have some work to do to keep up with these changes.

While the new standard salary level is a notable difference, it’s not the only change the DOL made. The department also revised rules for highly-compensated employees, regulations on overtime pay calculations, and other crucial details. To help, we broke down exactly what the DOL changed to help you know where your business stands and what you should do next.

A clock tracking time for employees now eligible for overtime and papers documenting business numbers like regular rate calculations.


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Navigating Overtime Pay: A Breakdown of White Collar Exemptions

by Tim AustinJanuary 14, 2020 8:00 AM

With recent changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), many business owners – and their employees – are trying to figure out exactly who qualifies as exempt from overtime pay under the new rules. Unless you’re ready to dig into Department of Labor (DOL) fact sheets and other documents, it’s not always clear just what counts as white collar exemption these days. To help, we’ve put together a breakdown of these exemptions to help you properly classify your employees.

A group of white collar exempt employees at a business.


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Human Resources

Holiday Pay: How it Works and What it Means for Your Business

by Tim AustinNovember 27, 2019 8:00 AM

The holidays are typically a time of joy and celebration, but they also require business owners to make some additional considerations about holiday pay. This type of pay makes it possible for employees to stay home for a selection of holidays and still get paid for those days. However, this benefit isn’t always a guarantee depending on the needs of your business. 

Are you unsure about how to handle holiday pay for your business? We broke down some common holiday pay questions to help you determine how holiday pay can affect your business and the best plan of action for your specific situation.

A piggy bank with Christmas lights representing holiday pay. 


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Benefits | Payroll

Parental Benefits: Should Your Business Offer Maternity and Paternity Leave?

by Tim AustinNovember 21, 2019 8:00 AM

As a business owner, you have to make countless decisions about the types of benefits your business offers. From health insurance plans to PTO, your benefits package impacts your employees and your bottom line. Deciding on the type of benefits you want to offer your employees, like maternity and paternity leave, can be a tricky situation.

Two new parents with their baby while on maternity and paternity leave from their employers. 


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Compliance Considerations for When Your Company Reaches 50 Employees

by Tim AustinMay 10, 2019 8:00 AM

The 50-employee mark is more than just a milestone; it’s also an important number for some major regulation requirements. Once your business has 50 full-time employees, various federal and state laws become mandatory, which can wreak havoc on your business if you don’t prepare for them. Here’s what your business needs to do to stay compliant once it reaches 50 full-time employees. 

Multiple employees during a training session at an applicable large employer. 


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Human Resources

Department of Labor Proposes Increase to Wage Threshold: What it Means for Small Business Owners

by Tim AustinApril 8, 2019 8:00 AM

The Department of Labor announced a proposal in early March to change the salary-level threshold for white-collar exemptions. This move comes more than two years after a federal judge blocked another attempt to update the threshold for overtime eligibility, although the details of the proposal differ from the 2016 proposal.

The current salary-level threshold for white-collar exemptions is $23,600 annually, which equates to $455 per week. The DoL’s new proposal seeks to increase the threshold to $35,308 annually ($679 per week) – nearly halfway to the DoL’s 2016 target threshold of $47,476 ($913 per week).

While the new proposal is notably lower than the blocked attempt, it still marks a nearly 50 percent increase from the current wage threshold. As a result, the DoL “estimates that 1.1 million currently exempt employees who earn at least $455 per week but less than the proposed standard salary level of $679 per week would, without some intervening action by their employers, become eligible for overtime.” That’s a notable change that can have a direct impact on your employee’s compensation.

Businessman contemplating options regarding the new salary-level threshold proposal from the Department of Labor. 


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How the Ongoing Evolution of the Fiduciary Rule Affects Small Business Owners

by Tom SmithMarch 28, 2018 8:00 AM

The fiduciary rule has had a bumpy ride in the past few years. After initially going into partial effect in June of 2017 and targeting Jan. 1, 2018 for a full rollout, the move to have all financial professionals who work with retirement plans follow the same fiduciary ethics and standards was postponed until July 1, 2019. Now MarketWatch reports that the Fifth Circuit Court “struck down the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule” in a split decision Thursday, March 15, 2018.

This may not be the end of the fiduciary rule, however. According to Forbes Contributor David Trainer, the fiduciary rule may still make an impact even after being struck down. Trainer writes “While the ruling could end the Fiduciary Rule as law, it cannot erase the awareness the DOL [Department of Labor] raised, nor can it stop market forces leading the business towards a more ethical place.”  

So, what does this mean for business owners? The fiduciary rule wasn’t designed to directly impact you as an owner, but it does affect the financial advisors connected to your business. Here’s a quick rundown of how the fiduciary rule can still make an impression on financial advisors and what that may mean for your business.

Financial advisors for a small business 401(k) plan.


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Importance of Proper Employee Classification

by Tim AustinJune 13, 2017 8:00 AM

There are several employee work classifications covering everyone from full-time workers to special classes such as interns. Each person needs to be sorted into their appropriate groups to help determine their benefit eligibility.

However, there are occasions where employees can be incorrectly classified. The government takes this issue very seriously. The Society for Human Resource Management writes that proper employee classification “make[s] sure that all legal requirements are maintained so that there is no discrimination in terms of benefit plan eligibility and payment of compensation in accordance with federal and state laws.” It’s important to know how misclassification works and just how much it can hurt your business.

Image of warehouse workers. Learn about the dangers of employee misclassification.


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Risk Management

Have You Heard About the DOL’s New Overtime Rules?

by Andrew SzczesniakJuly 7, 2015 8:00 AM

A couple of weeks ago, prefaced by an op-ed piece written by President Obama, the Department of Labor issued new directives on overtime rules. As with most government regulations, however good the intention, the result on small business owners will be a creation of “additional costs and record-keeping headaches” according to the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB).

Find out how the Department of Labor’s new overtime rules may affect you.


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