Washington Voters Approve Minimum Wage Increases and Paid Sick Leave

Minimum Wage Increases Begin January 1, 2017

Voters in Washington State have approved a ballot initiative that raises the state minimum wage and requires paid sick leave.

Minimum Wage
Under the initiative, the minimum wage will rise as follows:

  • Beginning January 1, 2017: $11.00 per hour.
  • Beginning January 1, 2018: $11.50 per hour.
  • Beginning January 1, 2019: $12.00 per hour.
  • Beginning January 1, 2020: $13.50 per hour.
  • Beginning January 1, 2021 (and each following January 1st), the minimum wage will be adjusted for inflation.

Note: An employer must pay to its employees all tips and gratuities and all service charges (except those that are itemized as not being payable to the employee(s) servicing the customer). Tips and service charges paid to an employee are in addition to (and may not count towards) the employee’s hourly minimum wage.

Paid Sick Leave
Beginning January 1, 2018, every employer must provide each of its employees paid sick leave (at the greater of the newly increased minimum wage or the employee’s normal wage). Highlights of the law are presented below:

  • An employee will accrue at least one hour of paid sick leave for every 40 hours worked.
  • An employer may provide paid sick leave in advance of accrual, provided that such front-loading meets or exceeds the requirements of the law for accrual, use, and carryover of paid sick leave.
  • An employee is authorized to use paid sick leave for (among other things) an absence resulting from the employee’s mental or physical illness, injury, or health condition, or to allow the employee to provide care for a family member with a mental or physical illness, injury, or health condition.
  • Unused paid sick leave carries over to the following year, except that an employer is not required to allow an employee to carry over paid sick leave in excess of 40 hours.
  • The initiative generally does not require an employer to provide financial or other reimbursement for accrued and unused paid sick leave to any employee upon his or her termination, resignation, retirement, or other separation from employment.

Click here to read the initiative.

ORIGINALLY POSTED BY HR360.COM

Colorado Voters Approve Minimum Wage Increases

Increases Begin January 1, 2017

Voters in Colorado have approved an initiative that raises the state minimum wage. Under the initiative, Colorado’s minimum wage is increased to $9.30 per hour (from $8.31 per hour), effective January 1, 2017.

Additionally, the minimum wage is increased annually by $0.90 each January 1 until it reaches $12.00 per hour (effective January 2020). After that, the minimum wage is adjusted annually for cost of living increases.

Note: No more than $3.02 per hour in tip income may be used to offset the minimum wage of employees who regularly receive tips.

Click here to read the initiative.

ORIGINALLY POSTED BY HR360.COM

Rhode Island: Mandated Short Term Disability Rates Increase

Weekly Maximum and Minimum Benefit Rates Increase

Rhode Island has announced that its weekly maximum and minimum short term disability rates have increased.

Background
Rhode Island’s temporary disability insurance program provides income support to individuals who are out of work because of a non-work related illness or injury. To be eligible, an individual must meet certain earnings requirements and be medically certified by a qualified health care provider as unable to work.

An individual’s weekly benefit rate will be equal to 4.62% of the wages paid in the highest quarter of his or her base period.

Updated Rates
For claims with a “Benefit Year Begin Date” of July 3, 2016 or later,$89.00 is the minimum benefit rate and $817.00 is the maximum benefit rate. This does not include dependency allowance. The weekly benefit rate remains the same throughout the entire benefit year.

Click here for more information on Rhode Island’s temporary disability program.

Originally Published by HR 360, Inc.

DOL Issues Guidance for Private Employers on Final Overtime Rule

Guidance Provides Options for Compliance

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released guidance on its final overtime rule to help private sector employers evaluate current practices and transition to the rule’s requirements.

Background
The DOL’s final rule, effective December 1, 2016, updates the regulations governing which executive, administrative, and professional employees (“white collar” workers) are entitled to the minimum wage and overtime pay protections of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The rule focuses primarily on updating the salary and compensation levelsneeded for such workers to be exempt. In particular, the final rule:

  • Raises the salary threshold from $455 a week to $913 per week (or$47,476 annually) for a full-year worker;
  • Sets the highly-compensated employee (HCE) total annual compensation level equal to $134,004 annually;
  • Establishes a mechanism for automatically updating the salary and compensation levels every 3 years, beginning on January 1, 2020; and
  • Amends the regulations to allow employers to use nondiscretionary bonuses, incentives, and commissions to satisfy up to 10% of the new standard salary level, so long asemployers pay those amounts on a quarterly or more frequent basis.

Note: When both the FLSA and a state law apply, the employee is entitled to the most favorable provisions of each law.

New Guidance
Among other things, the DOL’s guidance details some of the options employers may exercise in determining how to comply with the final rule. Employers have certain options for responding to the changes to the salary level, and the DOL does not dictate or recommend any method. Such options include:

  • Providing pay raises that increase workers’ salaries to the new threshold;
  • Spreading employment by reducing or eliminating work hours of individual employees working over 40 hours per week for which no overtime is being paid; or
  • Paying overtime.

Note: The rule does not require employers to convert a salaried worker making less than the new salary threshold to hourly status; employers can pay non-exempt employees on a salary basis and pay overtime for hours worked beyond 40 in a week.

Click here to read the guidance. Additional information on the final rule, including fact sheets and Q&As, is available on the DOL’s final rule webpage.

Originally Published by HR 360, Inc.

Minnesota Minimum Wage Rates Increase on August 1, 2016

New State and Federal Combination Poster Available for Purchase at minnesota-federal-combo-labor-law-poster-english
www.AllinOnePosters.com

The minimum wage rates in Minnesota will go up on August 1, 2016, according to the following schedule:

  • Large employersmust pay at least $9.50 an hour (annual gross volume of sales made or business done of $500,000 or more);
  • Small employersmust pay at least $7.75 an hour (annual gross volume of sales made or business done of less than $500,000);
  • Thetraining wage rate is $7.75 an hour (90-day training rate paid to employees who are younger than 20 years of age); andminwage
  • Theyouth wage rate is $7.75 an hour (may be paid to employees younger than 18 years of age).

Note: In cases where an employee is subject to both the state and federal m
inimum wage laws, the employee is entitled to the higher of the two minimum
wages.

A new state and federal combination poster reflecting the updated rates is available for purchase. Additional information regarding Minnesota’s minimum wage rates is available by clicking here.

Minimum Wage Rate in Maryland (MD)

  • Effective July 1, 2016, Maryland’s minimum wage rate is $8.75 per hour and $3.63 per hour for tipped employees.

Special Update: The minimum wage in Maryland will rise over the next several years, according to the following schedule:

  • $9.25 per hour beginning July 1, 2017; and
  • $10.10 per hour beginning July 1, 2018.

Effective as of July 1, 2014, an employer’s tip credit may not exceed the state minimum wage less $3.63.

Special Notes Regarding Tipped Employees: A tipped employee customarily and regularly receives more than $30 per month in tips. If the employee’s tips and the cash wage do not equal the minimum wage, the employer must make up the difference. A tipped employee who spends more than 20% of his or her work time performing non-tip producing duties directly related to his or her tipped occupation must be paid at least the minimum wage for that time. Maryland generally prohibits employers from:

  • Requiring a tipped employee to reimburse the employer or pay the employer an amount equivalent to a customer’s charge for food or beverages if the customer leaves the employer’s place of business without paying; or
  • Making a deduction (subject to applicable law) from the wage of a tipped employee to reimburse the employer for an amount equivalent to a customer’s charge for food or beverages if the customer leaves the employer’s place of business without paying.

Employers must conspicuously post a printed notice of the provisions of the law in a place where a tipped employee is employed. 

Please Note: The state laws summaries featured on this site are for general informational purposes only. In addition to state law, certain municipalities may enact legislation that imposes different requirements. State and local laws change frequently and, as such, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information featured in the State Laws section. For more detailed information regarding state or local laws, please contact your state labor department or the appropriate local government agency.

ORIGINALLY POSTED BY HR360

Oregon BOLI Announces Minimum Wage Rules

Oregon July 1 2016 mapNew rules will help employers calculate wages when an employee works in multiple areas

PORTLAND, OR—The Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) has published new minimum wage rules in preparation for the July 2016 minimum wage increase, the agency announced today.

The rules will help employers calculate wages in circumstances such as a worker performing duties at a location other than the employer’s permanent location or working in multiple areas in the course of a work period.

The rules can be found here.

The rules reflect comments from a diverse group of Oregonians and an advisory group that included the

NW Grocery Associations, Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association, Oregon Farm Bureau, Oregon

Association of Nurseries, Association of Oregon Industries, Oregon Business Association, UFCW, PCUN,

AFL-CIO, Family Forward, SEIU, CAUSA and Oregon Center for Public Policy. In addition to holding a public hearing and convening multiple advisory meetings, the agency received more than 300 written comments about the proposed rules.

“I appreciate that both industry associations and minimum wage advocates stepped up to advise our agency’s rulemaking process,” said Labor Commissioner Avakian. “As Oregon raises its minimum wage for more than a hundred thousand workers next month, we hope that the rules will provide fairness to workers and employers alike.”

Passed by the 2016 Oregon Legislature, SB 1532 creates a series of annual minimum wage increases starting in July. After 2023, Oregon’s minimum wage rate will be indexed to inflation based on the

Consumer Price Index (CPI), a figure published by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics to track prices for a fixed “market basket” of goods.

The law creates a tiered wage floor based on three zones around the state: 1) inside the urban growth boundary of the Portland metro region, including Multnomah, Washington and Clackamas counties 2) certain “nonurban” counties listed here and 3) the rest of the state.

BOLI’s Technical Assistance for Employers Program will hold a series of seminars around the state to help employers navigate new sick time requirements, minimum wage rules and other new workplace laws.

NOTE: The agency has also developed one poster for the state that will satisfy employers’ posting requirements. As of June 16, 2016, All In One Poster Company will have this newly released notice included in our Labor Law Posters for Oregon.

Here is the actual table, with some explanation and footnotes showing the rundown of the plan:

Effective Date of Rate Increase Base Rate Exception:  Rate within Portland’s Urban Growth Boundary2 Exception:  Rate within Nonurban Counties3
July 1, 2016 $9.75 $9.75 $9.50
July 1, 2017 $10.25 $11.25 $10.00
July 1, 2018 $10.75 $12.00 $10.50
July 1, 2019 $11.25 $12.50 $11.00
July 1, 2020 $12.00 $13.25 $11.50
July 1, 2021 $12.75 $14.00 $12.00
July 1, 2022 $13.50 $14.75 $12.50

After June 30, 2023, the base rate will be adjusted for inflation, with the Portland rate set $1.25 above the base and the nonurban county rate set $1.00 below the base.

Employers should review their payroll practices and, as with any minimum wage increase, implement any required changes to comply with each of the upcoming rate adjustments starting later this year.

1 Some cities have recently raised the minimum wage higher than the projected rates established by Oregon’s new law.

2 An area encompassing the City of Portland and much of the greater tri-county area (Multnomah, Washington, and Clackamas counties) that is managed and periodically expanded by Metro, the Portland area regional government.

3 Baker, Coos, Crook, Curry, Douglas, Gilliam, Grant, Harney, Jefferson, Klamath, Lake, Malheur, Morrow, Sherman, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa, and Wheeler counties.

Minimum Wage Rate in the District of Columbia (DC)

Update: The minimum wage in the District of Columbia will rise to $11.50 per hour beginning July 1, 2016 (or if greater at that time, the federal minimum wage plus $1) and $2.77 per hour for tipped employees.

In addition, employers of tipped employees must submit a quarterly wage report within 30 days of the end of each quarter to the Mayor certifying that the employee was paid the required minimum wage. The Mayor is expected to create an Internet-based portal for online reporting of the quarterly wage reports. Click here to read the text of the law.

Special Note Regarding Tipped Employees: If an employee’s tips and the cash wage do not equal the minimum wage, the employer must make up the difference.

Special Note Regarding Minor Employees: Individuals under the age of 18 may be paid the minimum wage established by the federal government.

Update: In late April 2016, the adult learner minimum wage and overtime for companions of the aged or infirm was removed from exception. Adult learners between the ages of 18 and 20 can no longer be paid federal minimum wage for the first 90 days of employment, but must be paid the minimum wage established by the District of Columbia.

Update: New details were also added that clarifies which contactors or recipients of government assistance shall pay the Living Wage rate. The Living Wage notice was revised with a wage increase from $13.84 per hour to $13.85 per hour

Update: The US Department of Labor’s Home Care Rule, effective 11/12/2015, made overtime exemptions unlawful for direct care workers who provide home services.

Update: Updates to the DC FMLA notice remove the eligible time period – weeks of leave in a 24-month period – under the Medical Leave Benefits.

For the benefit of our clients, these updates are already included in our DC & Federal Combination Posters offered on www.AllinOnePosters.com beginning May 1, 2016.

 

For More Information

District of Columbia Department of Employment Services
4058 Minnesota Avenue, NE
Washington, D.C. 20019
(202) 724-7000

DOL Updates Salary and Compensation Levels Required for FLSA ‘White Collar’ Exemption

Changes Effective December 1, 2016

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released a final rule, effectiveDecember 1, 2016, to update the regulations governing which executive, administrative, and professional employees (referred to as “EAP” or “white collar” workers) are entitled to the federal Fair Labor Standards Act’s (FLSA) minimum wage and overtime pay protections.

Current Rules
The FLSA provides an exemption from both minimum wage andovertime pay for employees employed as bona fide executive,administrative, and professional employees (among others). The current regulations implementing the exemption have generally required each of three tests to be met for the exemption to apply:

  1. The employee must be paid a predetermined and fixed salary that is not subject to reduction because of variations in the quality or quantity of work performed (the “salary basis test“);
  2. The amount of salary paid must meet a minimum specified amount, the current level for which is not less than $455 per week, or $23,660 per year (the “salary level test“); and
  3. The employee’s job duties must primarily involve executive, administrative, or professional duties as defined by the regulations (the “duties test“).

“Highly-compensated employees” (HCEs) who are paid total annual compensation of $100,000 or more and meet certain other conditions are also deemed exempt.

Note: Job titles never determine exempt status. Receiving a particular salary, alone, does not indicate that an employee is exempt. Rather, in order for a white collar exemption to apply, an employee’s specific job duties and earnings must meet all of the applicable requirements provided in the regulations.

Key Changes
A comparison table of the current regulations, proposed rule, and final rule has been provided by the DOL. Among other things, the final rule:

  • Sets the standard salary level at the 40th percentile of earnings of full-time salaried workers in the lowest-wage Census Region (rather than on national data as originally proposed), resulting in a salary level of $913 per week or $47,476 annually for a full-year worker;
  • Sets the HCE total annual compensation level equal to the 90th percentile of earnings of full-time salaried workers nationally, consistent with the DOL’s original proposal ($134,004 annually);
  • Establishes a mechanism for automatically updating the salary and compensation levels every 3 years, beginning on January 1, 2020 (rather than annual updates as originally proposed); and
  • Amends the regulations to allow employers to use nondiscretionary bonuses, incentives, and commissions to satisfy up to 10% of the new standard salary level, so long asemployers pay those amounts on a quarterly or more frequent basis.

The DOL is not making any changes to the current duties tests. For more information, please refer to the DOL’s website on the final rule, which offers employers comprehensive resources including fact sheets, Q&As, guidance for businesses, and more.

ORIGINALLY POSTED BY WWW.HR360.COM

Updated 2016 Michigan Labor Law Poster

STAY IN COMPLIANCE!

The state of Michigan just released a new minimum wage poster that Michigan-Federal-Combo-Labor-Law-Poster-Englishtakes effect January 1, 2016. The new rate is $8.50 an hour. In addition, there have been a few other changes to the posters this year. The Michigan Safety and Health Protection on the Job has been updated to reflect the new regulations regarding reporting all work-related inpatient hospitalizations, amputations, and losses of an eye. Employers must notify the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs within 24 hours. Both of these changes and a few other minor changes are now included in our 2016 posters!

You may place your order directly online, or click to download the 2016 Order Form which you may return to us via email, postal mail, or fax at (714) 521-7728. For more information, you may contact us at (800) 273-0307 or send us an email at sales@allinoneposters.com, our knowledgeable Customer Service Team will readily assist you.