Seasonal Businesses and the FLSA

Seasonal Businesses and the FLSA

In response to the effect of COVID-19 on seasonal businesses, the U.S. Department of Labor will issue a temporary reprieve to these seasonal businesses against the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) minimum wage and overtime violations. Many of these businesses were forced to adapt their day-to-day operations because of the pandemic. Resultingly, many seasonal businesses were made ineligible for the seasonal exemption due to these necessary adaptations.

Changes due to the Pandemic

Businesses that have had to change their operations due to the pandemic are, according to a Law360 article, “those business that are only open for seven months a year or less or whose income fluctuates dramatically at different points in the year.” Such seasonal businesses include amusement parks, golf courses, stadiums, and camps, whose ability to remain open and offer services is highly dependent on the weather and/or (especially for camps) the summer term of the school year. Again, these businesses will benefit from non-enforcement of FLSA minimum wage and overtime violations that may even continue into 2021 should the pandemic, and its dampening economic effect, persist.

 

Companies that have had to adopt alternatives to their usual operations will be those benefited by the non-enforcement of such FLSA claims for the time being. However, with the benefit of this non-enforcement, a few factors must be met for it to apply to a seasonal business.

Factors to Consider

In order to enjoy the advantages the DOL is offering, businesses must have either been an exempt seasonal operation before 2020 or one that had already implemented plans to become an exempt seasonal operation before the start of that year. Additionally, the businesses must put in place a plan to resume regular business in 2021 while maintaining their pre-pandemic wages.

 

All of these changes have been implemented by the DOL in an effort to mitigate the harsh impact that the pandemic has had on businesses, mainly seasonal ones. With the implementation of the non-enforcement of such claims for the time being, the DOL hopes to ease the burden that such employers have had to face until the levels of such operations can adjust to their normal, pre-pandemic positions.

 

– Jacob Mikalov for Barkan Meizlish, LLP

Work History and Your Social Security Disability Claim

Work History and Your Social Security Disability Claim:

The circumstances that lead someone to apply for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) vary. The strenuous application process includes a series of difficult questions. These questions include a request for a detailed work history. This may seem counter-intuitive, as individual’s applying for SSDI can no longer work. However, understanding the application process and questions can help you complete your application as effectively as possible.

Need to Knows:

SSDI applications require your work history for several reasons. Namely, work history helps the Social Security Administration (SSA) determine:

  1. Eligibility for SSDI based on your past income taxes and
  2. That you can no longer perform the tasks required at your previous jobs or other “substantial gainful activity.”

These two factors are key to determining whether you will receive SSDI benefits. SSDI is a tax-funded program. Evaluating an individual’s past capacity to pay into the system, or that a family member has paid into the system, is part of the application process. Work history helps verify payment into the SSDI system, as this tax is taken out of paychecks. Your actual ability to work or participate in “substantial gainful activity” is equally important to the SSA.

When the SSA evaluates your work history and your application, they are looking to see if your disability or injury affects your ability to earn income. For instance, if you worked in one field for your entire career before your disability began impairing your work, it may be difficult to switch industries. The Administration may ask for more specific information on your previous work experience, including information on daily tasks and expectations.

Now What?

The SSDI/SSI application process is difficult. We want to help. Our SSDI attorney may be able to help with the application process, as well as with the appeals process. Contact our office today for your free consultation or send us an email at info@barkanmeizlish.com.

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