United States Labor Law

Under United States Labor Law the Department of Labor produced the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). This Act is administered by the Wage and Hour Division (WHD). Although some parts of the FLSA are clear other parts leave much for someone to think about. Keeping in mind that I have been dealing with many parts of the FLSA for almost forty years I still sometimes have questions that need clarification.

I suppose the question on most people’s minds is whether the law applies to their business. This is a fair question and deserves a straight answer, but unfortunately it is not quite that simple.

Under United States Labor Law, specifically the Fair labor Standards Act, any business with employees who engage in interstate commerce will fall under this Act. Interstate commerce is when a business buys, sells, produces, or simply engages in business with another business outside the state they are doing business in. That was a mouth full! Therefore, if you are a restaurant in Colorado and purchase lobster tails from Maine you are engaged in interstate commerce. The second part of this is whether or not your annual dollar volume is $500K or more. If so, you fall under the Act.

However, not so quick! Whether or not your annual dollar volume is more or less than $500K you will still be under the FLSA if your business is: a hospital; medical institution primary engaged in caring for the elderly, mentally handicapped, sick, or disabled provided they are residing on the property; learning facilities for children who are mentally or physically handicapped or considered gifted; all regular schools from preschool to higher level education; and all federal, state, and local government agencies.

Do you have it all figured out yet and have a clear understanding of whether your business is or is not liable under the Act according to United States Labor Law? Unfortunately there are more exceptions!

No matter what your annual dollar volume is if during any work week your business is individually engaged in any aspect of interstate commerce, or closely related and/or directly pertinent to the production of goods that will be part of interstate commerce.

Do you still feel like you have dodged a bullet and your organization does not fall under the Act. Well there is still one more challenge for you then.

Under United States Labor Law the Act applies to domestic service workers such as: day workers; housekeepers; chauffeurs; cooks; or full time daycare providers. In these cases if the worker receives more than $1,700 in wages from one employer within a calendar year, or they work a total of more than eight hours in a week for one or more employers.

Having stated all the above I hope that you are left with the idea that almost all business probably deal with something that has them falling under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Interstate commerce is one of those definitions that place’s almost everyone under it. In today’s market place we buy, sell, trade, produce, provide services for, supply parts to, receive parts from, a business that originates outside of our state, including foreign countries like Japan, Hong Kong, China, etc.

Thank you and May GOD Bless You!

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