US DOL Field Assistance Bulletin: Rehabilitation Act Section 511 and FLSA Section 14(c)

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Today, the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) published Field Assistance Bulletin (FAB) 2022-4 that provides additional guidance and clarification on the application of Rehabilitation Act Section 511 and the protections it offers workers employed under Section 14(c) of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Section 511 requires employers with a 14(c) certificate to ensure that workers have received critical resources and information prior to the payment of subminimum wages. The timely provision of these resources and information help maximize opportunities to obtain competitive integrated employment.


The FAB clarifies the following points regarding youth (individuals with disabilities 24 years old and younger) and all individuals paid subminimum wages under Section 14(c): Section 511 requirements, the timing of these requirements, documentation to be kept by an employer, and whether this documentation can be used by multiple employers.


The FAB also explains the FLSA’s prohibitions against retaliation when workers exercise their rights related to the Section 511 provisions.


WHD is committed to protecting workers with disabilities by ensuring compliance with Section 14(c) of the FLSA and Section 511 of the Rehabilitation Act. As explained in this FAB, WHD will enforce the Section 511 requirements, including the documentation and timing of required services, and seek the payment of the full Federal minimum wage where these requirements are not met. Employers have the responsibility to ensure all the requirements of these laws are met.


To provide additional guidance, WHD intends to publish new updated fact sheets regarding Section 511 requirements and our enforcement policies.


Additional information on Section 14(c) and Section 511 can be found at: https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/workers-with-disabilities.


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Lisa Smith, SPHR, SCP

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