Yesterday, we shared attorney David Fortney’s insights on OFCCP’s new affirmative action regulations. Today, more on what you need to know about the “new” OFCCP.
With the OFCCP (Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs), it’s not only the two new challenging requirements concerning veterans and employees with disabilities, but it’s also a new aggressive stance that makes the OFCCP a force to be reckoned with, says Fortney.
A founder of the Fortney Scott law firm in Washington, D.C., Fortney offered his tips at a recent meeting of the Employers Counsel Network, a network of employment attorneys in all 50 states who write BLR’s monthly state employment law newsletters (BLR is CER’s parent company).
OFCCP Enforcement Trends
Not too long ago, the OFCCP was a subtier 800-person operation with a relatively small budget, says Fortney. Most people had never heard of it, and few could tell you what the acronym stood for, he says. But suddenly, the OFCCP has become one of the most active DOL enforcement agencies.
The OFCCP plans on implementing an enterprisewide investigative process (as opposed to focusing on individual establishments), Fortney says.
We’re also seeing considerable cooperation among the OFCCP, the EEOC, and the Department of Justice, Fortney adds. Sharing of information with state agencies, the IRS, and Wage and Hour offices means an audit from one may trigger an audit from another.
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Expect the following from the OFCCP, says Fortney:
- “Enterprisewide” focus on systemic problems. This can lead to multiple establishment/corporatewide audits.
- Increased OFCCP interoffice cooperation.
- A more aggressive OFCCP
- Shorter extensions.
- More expansive data requests.
- Running regressions early, and only once.
- National Office having a greater involvement in settlements.
- Less flexibility in negotiations and conciliation agreements.
- Debarment as a much greater threat.
- Comprehensive analysis of written AAP.
- Requests for documentation of compliance with notifications to employees.
- Pursuit of both individual and class claims.
- Examination of compliance history for the past 3 years.
- On-site audits triggered by insufficient supporting documentation from the contractor.
Go to these websites to access the new rules concerning veterans and individuals with disabilities:
OFCCP Final Rule to Improve Job Opportunities for Protected Veterans:
OFCCP Final Rule to Improve Job Opportunities for Individuals with Disabilities:
OFCCP on the Attack—Are You Prepared?
Make no mistake. The OFCCP will be working hard to enforce the new rules, compelling contractors to come into compliance with the new requirements. In recent years, the OFCCP has undertaken an unprecedented effort to conduct compliance reviews and enforcement efforts. The new final rules reflect those continued efforts.
Not only that, but you need to keep up with all of California’s complex employment laws, as well. And, unlike the federal government, which puts all new regulations into the Federal Register, California publicizes them in obscure journals that aren’t widely available. Yet officials still expect you to comply.
Fortunately, tools are available to help you keep up with state laws. One is our fully updated 2014 Guide to Employment Law for California Employers. This valuable desk reference has kept employers apprised of state law and its differences from the federal for years. Here are some reasons they tell us they won’t be without it:
Presents and Compares Federal and State Law on 200 Employment Topics. For each topic, first there’s a plain-English explanation of what you need for federal compliance. Then, right next to the federal, there’s an explanation of what California requires.
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