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Bulletin Item: Overtime and FMLA Changes Coming

The U.S. Department of Labor has announced it will soon release new regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act to increase the salary level required for exemption from overtime, which was last updated in 1975. The new regulations will also clarify and simplify the existing complex rules regarding the types of job duties exempt workers […]

H-2B Visa Cap Reached for 2006

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that the cap has been reached for H-2B work visas for the final six months of 2006. The H-2B visa program allows employers to request foreign workers to fill a one-time, peak-load, intermittent, or seasonal need for labor when no workers are available in the local […]

Wellness Tipping Point—Employees Now Care About Costs

There’s been general agreement that wellness programs are effective at reducing employer healthcare costs, but survey results show that healthcare costs now matter to employees—something that’s been missing up to this point. The survey, the Principal Financial Well-Being Indexsm, covered more than 1,600 employees and retirees at growing businesses with 10-1,000 employees. Released in early […]

News Notes: Clinton Makes Push For Workplace Child Care

President Clinton’s sweeping $21.7 billion child care initiative includes $500 million in tax incentives to encourage employers to provide more employer-sponsored child care. Under the plan, which is still subject to Congressional approval, employers would get a 25% tax credit for building or expanding child care facilities. Several other bills are pending in Congress which […]

October Corporate Pension Funding Levels Slip but Stay Above Record Low

Funding gains by U.S. corporate pension plans in September were erased in October, according to data Mercer Investment Consulting Inc. released Nov. 5.  Mercer reports that the aggregate deficit in pension plans S&P 1500 companies sponsored increased by $26 billion during the latest month, to $619 billion. This deficit corresponds to an aggregate funded ratio […]

News Notes: No Overtime For Truckers, Court Says

A group of truckers sought back overtime pay from their employer, Overnite Transportation Co. The truck drivers argued that when the state Legislature passed A.B. 60 in 1999, reinstating daily overtime—following its repeal in 1997—it abolished a previous “motor carrier” exemption from overtime for workers whose hours of service are regulated by the Department of […]

News Notes: No Comp Benefits for New Employee’s Psychiatric Injury

  A California appeal court has ruled an employee couldn’t recover workers’ comp benefits for psychiatric injury stemming from a work-related physical injury because the individual hadn’t worked for the employer for at least six months when initially injured. The court based its decision on a provision of the workers’ comp law that bars benefits […]

Definitions of ‘Fiduciary’ Will Soon be More ‘Economical’

Employers and plan administrators can have a better understanding of what a fiduciary is, courtesy of Phyllis C. Borzi, Department of Labor (DOL) assistant secretary for the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA). She shed some light on the department’s thought process on this matter at the March 13 ERISA Advisory Council meeting. The DOL’s efforts […]