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5th Cir. Court of Appeals rejects DOL interpretation of guest worker minimum-wage requirement

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in Compensation and Benefits,Human Resources

In a sign that some courts are flexing their muscles and resisting attempts by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to crack down on employers, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected an effort to force employers to cover more guest worker costs.

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals covers Texas employers.

Recent case: After Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, hotels that wanted to reopen found they were unable to hire enough employees. They then used the federal government’s guest worker program to import employees from other countries.

While those employees received more than the minimum wage, they had to incur significant costs associated with coming to the United States. For example, they had to pay their own travel expenses and costs associated with securing visas.

Once here, about 100 Latin American guest workers who were hired by a hotel chain sued, alleging Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) violati...(register to read more)

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