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New DOL Joint Employer Rule: The Four-Part Test and Requirements Under Fair Labor Standards Act

Structuring Employment, Franchise, Subcontractor, and Independent Contractor Agreements to Minimize the Risk of Joint Liability

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

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Conducted on Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Recorded event now available

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This CLE course will review the implications under the Department of Labor's recently published rule, which established new standards and tests for "joint employer" status. Our panel will clarify the four-part test for determination of "joint employer" status to provide practical advice on instances when a joint employer can be held jointly and severally liable for FLSA wage and hour obligations to the employee.


The Department of Labor has recently published a final rule on joint employer status, establishing the first new set of standards for determination in the last 60 years. The final rule, which goes into effect in mid-March 2020, sets forth a four-part test for determining joint employer status under the FLSA.

Employment counsel must prepare businesses to revise existing employment structures, as well as business relationships and contracts to protect clients from joint employer liability with franchisees and subcontractors, as well as with independent contractors and contingent workers.

Counsel must provide accurate and current information that will resolve issues when an employer's indirect control or oversight may be sufficient to trigger joint employer liability, particularly as this DOL rule relates to similar standards proposed by the NLRB and EEOC.

Listen as our experienced panel explains how counsel can structure and guide implementation of agreements with franchisees, subcontractors, and independent contractors to avoid joint employer liability.



  1. Four-part test for joint employer liability
    1. Hires or fires the employee
    2. Supervises and controls the employee's work schedule or conditions of employment to a substantial degree
    3. Determines the employee's rate and method of payment
    4. Maintains the employee's employment records
  2. Revising existing and structuring updated agreements
    1. Franchisees
    2. Subcontractor agreements
    3. Independent contractor agreements
  3. Best practices for preventing joint employer liability or employment liability with vendors and other non-owned entities


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • The new four-part test for determining joint employer liability and how the DOL's recent positions are impacting that standard
  • Provisions necessary for agreements between businesses and any franchisees, subcontractors, and independent contractors to avoid joint employer status
  • Best practices in structuring and implementing revisions in existing franchise, subcontractor, and independent contractor agreements, as well as potential vendors and other business relationships


Paretti, James
James A. (Jim) Paretti, Jr.

Littler Mendelson

Mr. Paretti is an experienced management-side employment and labor relations attorney with in-depth political and...  |  Read More

Roberts, V. Severin
V. Severin Roberts

Barrett & Farahany

Mr. Roberts is a Partner at Barrett & Farahany and the head of the Wage and Hour group. His practice is devoted to...  |  Read More

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