More Compliance Obligations - The US Department of Labor Has Been Busy

Wow, the United States Department of Labor has gotten the attention of many of our clients--and for good reason. The DOL is on a roll, impacting wages and job classifications and now the Family Medical Leave Act and affirmative action compliance for federal contractors. Our last e-newsletter addressed the DOL's new "White Collar" exemption regulations and provided recommendations on how to achieve compliance. Now it is time to dust off and update your FMLA policy and revisit the Office of Federal Contract Compliance (OFCCP) compliance obligations if your company is a federal contractor. No worries, we can help.


The DOL has issued a revised Poster for the Family Medical Leave Act. There is no new information on the poster; the information has simply been reorganized to (it is thought) make the poster easier to read and understand. Employers subject to FMLA should begin using this poster immediately by posting it wherever they have employees. The poster is here:

At the same time it released the new FMLA General Notice, the DOL also released a brand new 76-page guide on how employers should go about administering the FMLA - and that guide outlines the need for employer policies to mirror all the information on the General Notice.

So what does all this mean? It would be prudent for all employers that have 50 or more employees to update their FMLA policy documents and their Employee Handbook. Here is a helpful link.


It seems like just yesterday when we were reviewing the significant overhaul to the OFCCP regulations that govern Affirmative Action Plan compliance. For your convenience, here is a link to pertinent resource documents. The OFCCP now has new grounds upon which to audit and fine federal contractors for non-compliance: sex discrimination.

The DOL's Office of Federal Contractor Compliance (OFCCP) has promulgated an important update to Executive Order (EO) 11246. Starting August 15, 2016, the OFCCP's Sex Discrimination Guidelines under EO 11246 ("the Final Rule") will be updated to comport with other current workplace laws (such as Title VII) and the modern workplace. OFCCP decided that this update was long overdue; the Sex Discrimination Guidelines have not been overhauled since 1970.

A contractor violates the Final Rule when the contractor:

  • Fails to provide light duty and other such workplace accommodations to a pregnant employee to the same extent that such accommodations are afforded to other workers (disabled employees for example).
  • Denies a female employee opportunities for overtime work, training, better pay, or higher-paying positions because of her sex.
  • Fails to provide equal benefits to male and female employees participating in its fringe-benefit plans.
  • Turns a blind eye to a supervisor's unwelcome sexual advances to a female subordinate.
  • Establishes height or weight qualifications that adversely impact female applicants.
  • Provides less vacation time to female employees based upon a stereotypical assumption that women are more likely to have caregiving responsibilities and take maternity leave.
  • Denies a father's request for a flexible workplace arrangement based on the faulty assumption that men do not have and do not assume childcare responsibilities.
  • Refuses to allow workers to use bathrooms, changing rooms, showers, and similar facilities consistent with the gender with which the workers identify.
  • Treats employees or applicants adversely because they fail to comply with the contractor's expectations about how women and men should look or act.

We stand ready to help and provide our clients with a wide variety of proactive services and audits to help them keep pace with the constantly changing regulations that govern their workplace. Here is a link that outlines how easy compliance can be.