clock-timer-iStock_000023196160_LargeAfter missing several self-imposed deadlines to release new FLSA wage and hour regulations called for by President Obama, the DOL released proposed rules on Monday that will dramatically increase the number of employees eligible for overtime payments. As expected, the proposed changes focus primarily on the salary threshold for the “white-collar” exemptions to the overtime provisions of the FLSA.
Continue Reading New proposed wage and hour regulations finally released

HB initials LogoNational healthcare publication Modern Healthcare yesterday announced Husch Blackwell LLP is the seventh-largest healthcare law firm in the U.S. according to its 2015 rankings, up from No. 12 last year. Utilizing differing measurement techniques, American Health Lawyers Association also ranked healthcare practices, placing Husch Blackwell as fifth-largest in the country in its 2015 list, released

dollar-signiStock_000013001848_LargeThe DOL’s self-imposed February deadline for announcing new FLSA regulations redefining “white collar” exemptions has come and gone with without any action from the DOL. No new deadline has been announced; however, the DOL’s website suggests that it still hopes to release the new regulations soon. Stayed tuned, and we will report back when the

rings-iStock_000007928926_LargeThe Department of Labor (“DOL”) published its final rule on Feb. 24, 2015, relating to the definition of “spouse” under the Family and Medical Leave Act  (“FMLA”) Regulations. Beginning March 27, 2015, when the final rule becomes effective, the definition of “spouse” for purpose of FMLA leave will include eligible employees in legal same-sex marriages. Prior to this rule change, same-sex partners were only considered spouses if their marriage was recognized in the state where they lived. Under the new rule, the focus shifts to where the marriage was “celebrated.” Accordingly, if the marriage is legal under the law of the state where the marriage was performed or “celebrated,” the same-sex marriage is legal for purposes of the FMLA regardless of state law where the employee lives.
Continue Reading DOL issues final rule expanding FMLA leave rights to legal same-sex marriages

Flags of the word with China -148474930U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced it will be extending U.S. employment authorization to certain H-4 spouses of foreign nationals in H-1B status. Family members of H-1B workers are permitted to enter the United States in H-4 status as dependents of the H-1B worker, but they are not authorized to work. This change permits spouses in H-4 status to apply for an unrestricted work card provided the principal H-1B employee:

  1.  Is the beneficiary of an approved Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker; or
  2. Has been granted H-1B status under the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-First Century Act of 2000 (AC21), which permits H-1B employees seeking permanent residency to extend their H-1B status beyond the usual six-years.


Continue Reading Spouses of certain H-1B workers may obtain employment authorization

dollar-signiStock_000013001848_LargeIn March 2014, President Obama directed the Secretary of Labor to prepare and propose new FLSA regulations. These new rules were to be announced late last year, but have been repeatedly delayed. Now it appears the new rules will be announced later this month. While the scope of the changes is unknown, it is anticipated the changes will reduce the number of employees who qualify for exempt status.
Continue Reading Changes coming to FLSA regulations – Time to get ready

It’s time to begin preparing H-1B petitions for an early April filing and Oct. 1, 2015, effective date.

Advance planning is crucial. Due to the improving economy and the backlog of demand from April 2014, the H-1B cap will likely be exceeded again this year. Employers that fail to file H-1B petitions on April 1 may lose the opportunity to employ the intended foreign national candidate.
Continue Reading Healthcare employers: Plan now for filing H-1B petitions for foreign national candidates, OPT employees

Last week, Judge Richard J. Leon of the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia vacated the “third-party” regulation on the federal companionship exemption, which would have prevented third-party employers from utilizing the companionship exemption from minimum wage and overtime, as well as the “live-in” exemption from overtime.

On Dec. 31, 2014, the judge temporarily stayed the regulations that would have significantly altered the duties an exempt companion could provide. The regulations, which were set to go into effect at midnight on Dec. 31, would have prevented exempt companions from providing any “general household work” at all, and would have prevented them from engaging in any “care” of the client for more than 20 percent of their working time.
Continue Reading Proposed federal companionship regulations covering home care industry stayed by federal judge at ‘eleventh hour’

A Dec. 1 Strafford webinar on the legal and regulatory challenges of Ebola will feature five Husch Blackwell attorneys. The 90-minute CLE webinar with interactive Q&A will provide guidance to healthcare counsel and their clients in addressing HIPAA and EMTALA concerns when treating Ebola patients.

The panel will discuss state and federal mandatory reporting requirements, employment issues and lessons learned from the first U.S. Ebola cases.
Continue Reading Husch Blackwell attorneys address Ebola challenges

Now that patients with Ebola have landed on U.S. soil, hospitals and other healthcare providers must prepare for the possibility that a patient with Ebola will walk through the doors. In this Oct. 30 webinar, Husch Blackwell presenters will look at some of the pressing legal issues related to treating patients with communicable diseases such as Ebola, and what providers can do now to prepare their clinical, compliance and legal teams.
Continue Reading Upcoming webinar to offer legal, regulatory considerations for healthcare professionals preparing for Ebola