Supreme Court Declines To Review Overtime Case

Date: June 28, 2016 Last Edit: June 29, 2016

Ruling Lets Stand Lower Court Decision That Home Health Aides Are Eligible For Overtime Pay

The Hill reports the Supreme Court on Monday declined to review a decision from the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit that a rule requiring overtime pay for home healthcare workers falls “within the powers” of the Fair Labor Standards Act. The case, Home Care Association of America v. David Weil, focuses on the 2013 Labor Department decision that changed the definition of “companionship services” and “domestic service employment,” stating that “third-party employers must pay overtime if a domestic service employee is hired to provide companionship services to elderly and disabled individuals unable to care for themselves.” Third-party employers were previously exempt from such regulations. Following the Supreme Court’s ruling, Labor Secretary Tom Perez said, “Today’s decision by the court not to review a challenge to the final rule ensures that the rule can fulfill President Obama’s vision of an economy where hard work pays off and responsibility is rewarded.”

What This Means For Small Businesses

Small businesses in the home health care industry in particular will be affected by the court’s decision to allow the 2013 Labor Department changes to remain in effect. Since these changes took effect in October 2015, the National Association for Home Care and Hospice points out that home care companies, many of which are small businesses, have been forced to adjust their operations by using more part-time staff and placing restrictions on the number of hours staff work to avoid paying costly overtime. This leaves both caregivers, and the patients they serve, in a less-than-ideal position.

Additional Reading

Politico also reports on the Supreme Court’s decision not to hear the case.

Note: this article is intended to keep small business owners up on the latest news. It does not necessarily represent the policy stances of NFIB.

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