Why hire Wage and Hour Consulting Services?
Consultation with employers and their representatives
- My specialty is to assist employers and their CPAs and/or attorneys in the resolution of FLSA compliance quandaries, especially when there are concerns regarding overtime compensation computation practices. I do not require a guaranty. You pay me only for the time that I devote to you.
Consultation with attorneys
- Consulting expert services are available to management-side and plaintiffs’ attorneys. If you need a testifying expert, I can recommend another consultant (I no longer offer testifying expert services).
Second opinion services
- If you question the advice that you have received, it might be worthwhile to engage me to examine the facts and render an opinion.
Failure to comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) results in substantial back wage liabilities, even when the violations are inadvertent. Consultation with an expert can enable employers to identify practices that fall short of compliance and to make necessary corrections.
Compliance failures not only result in back wage obligations; there is usually an equal amount assessed as liquidated damages. Civil money penalties are often assessed, sometimes even exceeding the back wages. Additional costs, when litigation has been initiated, are legal fees, court costs, and reimbursement to plaintiffs for their legal expenses. Correcting erroneous practices (often technical issues and misunderstandings), especially if retroactive compliance is achieved, generally reduces the probability of DOL enforcement (investigation, penalty assessment, and possible litigation) and/or litigation by affected employees.
Mistakes are common when the pay system includes multiple hourly rates and/or various methods of computing regular wages. Similarly, when compensation is based in whole or in part on commissions, bonuses, salaries, tip credit, job rates, day rates, and/or piece rates, correctly computing overtime wages can be a challenge. Owner-operator* expenses must be considered with respect to minimum wage and record keeping compliance. *Examples: Delivery drivers who use their own vehicles (pizza or other restaurants, grocery stores, parcel delivery, and courier drivers), and CATV/Internet installation or construction (workers often use their own vehicles and tools).
Small businesses are especially vulnerable to FLSA compliance failures and their associated costs and inconveniences. There is a myth that a “small business” is exempt from FLSA provisions. Additionally, the common belief that an employer must have two or more employees for the FLSA to apply is not correct if there is "traditional" coverage. Each employment scenario must be carefully examined, keeping in mind that coverage is broadly construed and exemptions are applied narrowly.
My enforcement experience with the DOL Wage and Hour Division provided first-hand knowledge of how the FLSA applies to various types of employment and of employer practices that lead to back wage liabilities. I know how the agency goes about its work of enforcing the law and what employers need to know in order to maintain compliance. My work as a consultant and consulting/testifying expert since retirement from the DOL has enabled me to gain additional knowledge of practices that cause employers much grief.