A frequent violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act concerns unpaid summer interns. Many business owners want to introduce students to their businesses, but, because of financial concerns, they hire the students as unpaid interns. According to the United States Department of Labor, however, unless the relationship meets certain criteria, an intern must be paid in accordance with the FLSA’s minimum wage and overtime provisions. The determination of whether an internship is excluded from these provisions depends upon whether all of the following factors are met:
1. The internship is similar to the training given in an educational environment;
2. The internship is for the intern’s benefit;
3. The intern does not displace an employee and works under the close supervision of existing employees;
4. The employer derives no immediate advantage from the intern’s activities, and its operations may actually be impeded;
5. The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
6. The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages.
If all factors are met, the FLSA’s minimum wage and overtime provisions do not apply to the intern. In reality, most businesses expect an immediate advantage from their interns’ activities, and, therefore, most companies should pay their interns.
Press Release Contact Information:
KEITH A. CLOUSE
Clouse Dunn LLP
214.220.3833 ( fax)