On June 25th, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced the publication of five new wage & hour opinion letters that address compliance issues related to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). An opinion letter is an official, written opinion by the DOL’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) on how a particular law applies in specific circumstances presented by the entity that requested the letter.

New Guidance on Wage & Hour Issues

The new wage & hour opinion letters consist of:

  • FLSA2020-6 – This letter addresses whether salespeople who travel to different locations to sell products using their employer’s mobile assets qualify for the outside sales exemption under FLSA section 13(a)(1);
  • FLSA2020-7 – In this opinion letter, the WHD decides whether an automobile manufacturer’s direct payments to an automobile dealership’s employee, compensating the employee for work done on behalf of the dealership, may count toward the dealership’s minimum wage obligation to the employee under the FLSA;
  • FLSA2020-8 – This letter addresses whether salespeople who set up displays and perform demonstrations at various retail locations not owned, operated, or controlled by their employer to sell the employer’s products qualify for the outside sales employee exemption under Section 13(a)(1) of the FLSA;
  • FLSA2020-9 – This opinion letter offers insight into if emergency-management coordinators employed by a county government qualify for administrative exemptions under Section 13(a)(1) of the FLSA; and
  • FLSA2020-10: This letter addresses the application of the retail or service commission sales exemption under Section 7(i) of the FLSA, where more than half of an employee’s compensation in the relevant representative period ultimately does not consist of commissions.

Finding Other Opinion Letters

In addition to the latest releases, the public can also search for existing opinion letters by keyword, year, topic, and a variety of other filters on the WHD’s website. The DOL also encourages the public to submit requests for opinion letters to the WHD in order to obtain an opinion or to determine whether existing guidance already addresses their questions.

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