Employers recently have noticed explosive increases in
employment-related Department of Labor (DOL) claims, especially
relative to wage and hour legal action.
According to a 2010 survey conducted by San Francisco-based
ethics and compliance specialist ELT Inc., of more than 1,800 human
resource professionals, one-third responded that in one year their
organizations were subjected to wage and hour-related claims.
Typically, when DOL investigates such claims, it will review
employer records and employee files. If DOL determines an employer
did not properly classify an employee as exempt vs. nonexempt, pay
the employee for overtime, maintain accurate time records,
implement mealtime policies and compensate for all time worked, the
employer could be subjected to fines and payment of back wages.
Wage and hour class action lawsuits outnumber most other
employment risks. DOL reports its Wage and Hour Division has
recovered more than $1 billion in back wages during an eight-year
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