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How the Trump Administration could affect employment law

The inauguration of a new president brings questions about how laws and regulations will change. Given the switch from a Democrat to a Republican, particularly with a Republican-controlled Congress, expect changes to current federal laws and regulations.

We're constantly monitoring new rules and policies on a variety of fronts, but how the new administration will impact employees and employers is of particular interest to us.

A recent article in the New York Law Journal offers an excellent rundown of what to expect regarding employment law under the new administration. While nobody knows exactly what will happen, we could be in store for anything from just a few changes to major overhauls to areas such as immigration, healthcare, discrimination, and wage and hour laws, each of which could have a significant impact on both employers and employees.

Among the issues we're keeping an eye on are:

  • Overtime laws: We've written about changes to federal overtime rules in the past. The law that was set to bring wage increases to millions of workers through overtime pay has been on hold since it was blocked by a federal judge. The outcome of the lawsuit is still pending, but many experts expect that President Trump will oppose the proposed changes.
  • The Department of Labor (DOL): The Secretary of Labor oversees the federal organization that rules on, among many other issues, alleged violations of the FLSA. With the new administration comes a new Secretary of Labor, and how he or she staffs the DOL will be an important indicator for how investigations into employment law violations are conducted and resolved.
  • Federal law changes: Republican politicians often push for fewer federal regulations, and the current Congress and new administration have signaled that this will be the case. Fewer federal regulations will give the states more control, meaning it will be important to monitor what is happening with legislation where you live.

Laws are constantly evolving, but this evolution typically accelerates when there is a change in power. While it is always important to be mindful of how new laws and regulations affect you, never is that more true than when a new party takes control of the White House.

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