On Friday, August 21st, a federal appeals court ruled that nearly two million home care workers are in fact eligible for minimum wage and overtime protections if indicated by the Department of Labor. The date for implementing the new rule is not yet known, but given the unanimous decision it is likely to be sooner rather than later. So what will be the impacts?
- The rule applies to third-party home aide staffing agencies, which employ nearly 1.9 million people nationwide.
- Workers employed directly by clients or their families are still exempt from minimum wage and overtime laws. This exemption may make Consumer and Family-Directed Services more popular.
- Agencies with weak or ineffective time and attendance and scheduling will need to review their options. While overtime can never be eliminated, it can be minimized. Those agencies with effective time and attendance and scheduling solutions will be better able to manage the change.
- As Americans age, in-home care jobs are expected to grow by 49%, from 2012 to 2022, eclipsing the average growth for all occupations at 11%. Retention and recruitment will be a growing issue, especially when combined with a more stable economy. Effective HR and scheduling solutions can help reduce turnover and aid recruitment.
- States will need to review budgets. California recently included in the state’s $270 million budget funds to pay overtime to home care workers employed through the state’s Medicaid-funded In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program. California is the first and currently only state to allocate funding to pay overtime to home care workers who work more than 40 hours a week.
If you are looking to prepare your agency for these new regulations, contact MITC to speak with an agency specialist.