FLSA Employees vs. Independent Contractors under DOL Administrative Interpretation AI 2015-1

Blanchard FLSAThe Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) has been the law of the land since it was first ushered through congress by President Franklin Roosevelt almost eighty years ago.  The FLSA promised a fair day’s pay for a day’s work, and required overtime pay at time and a half for working more than forty hours a week.  Yet for the last two decades, federal courts have struggled with the scope of the FLSA protections as the “outsourced” labor model has become more prevalent in the domestic economy.  In the fractured labor market -as it has been called – companies have increasingly used workers defined as “independent contractors” to perform their core business functions.   With one swift re-classification, the otherwise “employers” are able to reduce and avoid costs related to unemployment insurance, workers compensation, and even avoid obligations to pay overtime… or so some would assume. The protections of the FLSA are not dependent on the company’s discretion.   So-called ‘independent contractors’ and other workers deprived of overtime pay have a legal right to recover the wages stolen through illegal misclassifications by their employers. [Read more…]

Media Spotlight on Allegedly Baseless Fraud Accusations Against Michigan’s Unemployed

Blanchard Media SpotlightThe federal lawsuit challenging the State of Michigan’s administration will certainly take months or years to wind through the courts.  The State has not yet responded and no ruling has yet to be made on the merits. Regardless, it is so important that Michigan’s unemployed know that people are working for their due process rights in the UIA system; and that baseless, robotic, accusations of fraud are not necessarily the result of anything they have done wrong. [Read more…]

Proposed DOL Regulations Advance Fair Pay and Safer Workplaces

Blanchard Proposed DOLSecretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez today takes a decisive step forward implementing Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order.  The new proposed regulations and agency guidance build on President Obama’s Executive Order last summer, protecting millions of workers involved in federal contracting from wage theft, inadequate workplace safety measures, and banning the abusive practice of denying access to the courts through mandatory arbitration clauses.  Both are being published today in the federal register and opened for a notice and comment period before final implementation. [Read more…]

Police actions must be questioned…

Blanchard Police ActionsOur system of civil justice relies on public trust.   How can we move forward as a civil society without that piece?  We need to have a system that instills faith that our prosecutors and courts will confront ALL wrongdoers and bring them to ALL to justice… if we want this society to work. [Read more…]