WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Labor recently announced two opinion letters that address compliance issues related to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). An opinion letter is an official, written opinion by the Department’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) on how a particular law applies in specific circumstances presented by the person or entity that requested the letter.
The opinion letters issued are:
FLSA2020-15: Addressing the compensability of time that employees spend attending voluntary training programs in certain situations.
FLSA2020-16: Addressing compensability of employee travel time in certain situations involving construction sites located away from the employer’s principal place of business.
“The opinion letters issued demonstrate the Wage and Hour Division’s commitment to providing clear guidance and compliance assistance to workers and employers,” said Wage and Hour Administrator Cheryl Stanton. “As the workforce continues to reopen, it remains important that we provide clarity to ensure workers are paid all the wages they have legally earned, and that employers compete on a level playing field.”
Those interested can search the department’s website for existing opinion letters by keyword, year, topic, and other filters. The department also encourages the public to submit requests for opinion letters to WHD to obtain an opinion or to determine whether existing guidance already addresses their questions. The division exercises discretion in determining whether and how it will respond to each request.
With this release, the Wage and Hour Division has now issued 67 opinion letters since Jan. 20, 2017.
WHD’s mission is to promote and achieve compliance with labor standards to protect and enhance the welfare of the nation’s workforce. WHD enforces Federal minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and child labor requirements of the FLSA. WHD also enforces the paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave requirements of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, the Employee Polygraph Protection Act, the FMLA, wage garnishment provisions of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, and a number of employment standards and worker protections as provided in several immigration related statutes. Additionally, WHD administers and enforces the prevailing wage requirements of the Davis Bacon Act and the Service Contract Act and other statutes applicable to federal contracts for construction and for the provision of goods and services.