D.C.: Emergency Legislation Clarifies Wage Theft Law

By Joanne Deschenaux Feb 9, 2015

On Feb. 3, 2015, the Washington, D.C. Council passed emergency legislation that further amends the D.C. Wage Theft Prevention Amendment Act of 2014, which takes effect Feb. 26, 2015. This legislation makes the following changes to the law:

  • The act’s language as previously written was unclear as to whether exempt employees were subject to the act’s heightened record-keeping requirements. The emergency legislation directly addresses this ambiguity and clarifies that employers are not required to record the “precise time worked” for most exempt employees. However, employers now must keep time records for certain exempt employees—including seamen, railroad employees, car salesmen, parking lot and parking garage attendants, and airport employees.
  • The D.C. mayor’s office must provide sample notices in languages in addition to English. Employers must provide notices to employees in other languages only if the mayor’s office has provided a sample notice in that language and 1) the employer knows the second language is the employee’s primary language, or 2) the employee requests a notice in a different language.
  • As before, the Wage Payment and Wage Collection Act will not require employers to pay any exempt employees twice a month; once a month is sufficient. Prior to this most recent emergency amendment, the wage theft act only excluded exempt employees from the twice-a-month requirement if the employer had a custom of doing so or if the employee’s contract permitted.

Joanne Deschenaux, J.D., is SHRM’s senior legal editor.


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