Enforced by the Department of Labor (DOL), the Fair Labor Standards Act, which is also known as the FLSA for short, helps regulate the employer-employee relationship in all of the United States of America. Interestingly, although states like California may have their own labor laws, they also have to abide by the FLSA. In the event that the two conflict, employers have to abide by the one that is more favorable to the employee. With all that said, it should come as no surprise that any change the DOL applies to the FLSA is of monumental importance to business owners and managers on the one hand and hardworking Americans on the other.
Hence, when the DOL announced that it was changing its 2010 definition of what constitutes a legally unpaid intern, this was big news. In fact, on January 5, the department replaced the old test it used to establish the basis for hiring an unpaid intern with a more lenient one.