The Biden Administration has immediately moved to freeze pending Department of Labor (DOL) regulations that would make it easier to designate workers as independent contractors. This rule was previously stated to take effect March 8, 2021. A new and finalized similar rule from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has similarly been frozen. Other important rules that are now frozen and subject to review include the DOL regulation that would allow businesses to pay tipped workers lower minimum wages rather than a standard of $7.25 for hours spent on work that does not generate gratuities, EEOC rules that would give employers more information from the EEOC during the conciliation process, a DOL initiative that encourages employers to self-report wage and hour violations to DOL in return for protection against further legal liability, a DOL rule that would have raised wage rates for specialty occupation visa holders, and a rule which would have prohibited stereotyping and scape-goating in diversity training. The latter type diversity training initiative was deemed to be unnecessary and chilling of legitimate diversity training. DOL has also announced that it will rescind a regulation broadening the defenses that religious federal contractors can use when accused of workplace discrimination.
This is part of our March 2021 Newsletter.
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