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Proposed Wage Rule Threatens Affordability of Home Healthcare

The already skyrocketing costs of home healthcare will increase even more if a Department of Labor proposal is approved.  With encouragement from President Obama, the Department of Labor proposes a rule that would eliminate an exemption in the Fair Labor Standards Act for in-home caregivers, unless the caregiver is employed directly by the family or household using the services.  In essence, this could destroy the businesses that supply home healthcare to families in need.

Currently, home caregivers are exempt from overtime.  Under the proposal, caregivers who work more than 40 hours per week and don’t work directly for the family will receive overtime at one and a half times their hourly rate.  In many cases, caregivers will be entitled to pay – and overtime – while they sleep.  As a result, third-party providers will be priced out of the market.  The benefits of professional screening and training of in-home caregivers provided by third-party providers will become a thing of the past.

Members of the public can submit their views on the proposed rules here for the Department of Labor to consider in setting its final rules.

Brody and Associates regularly advises management on complying with state and federal employment laws including wage and hour laws.  If we can be of assistance in this area, please contact us at info@brodyandassociates.com or 203.965.0560.