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Guideline on AI's Involvement in Workplace Functions

Department of Labor's Stance on AI

The Department of Labor issued guidance on AI in the workforce on April 29th stating that although AI may be introduced into daily functions, employers are still held responsible for maintaining compliance with federal law.

The Wage and Hour Division issued a Field Assistance Bulletin that provides guidelines to employers looking to integrate AI into the workforce. According to the bulletin, employers must continue to abide by FLSA and FMLA regulations, i.e., workers properly compensated for hours worked, as well as other laws such as the PUMP Act.

Key Guidelines

  • Employers opting to integrate AI tools for assistance with timekeeping, wage tracking, and scheduling are recommended to utilize human oversight to ensure that calculations for items such as overtime, regular time, wages, and breaks are accurate and compliant.

  • For leave requests, the bulletin cautions against the possibility of FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) certification violations that could result from using AI. Moreover, the bulletin warns against employers using AI for retaliation purposes against employees choosing to use such leave.

  • Employers with nursing mothers exercising their right to the PUMP Act (which mandates breaks and a clean space) should be aware that AI systems that prohibit such breaks or penalize the worker taking advantage of said breaks, would violate labor laws.

Wrap Up

Employers, along with the help of their HR provider, should conduct a labor law review of current practices to ensure present compliance and apply those practices to AI usage.

Employers should be prepared to adapt to more and more guidelines set by Congress and the DOL. Regardless, the employer is ultimately responsible for overseeing all functions of your company's AI system to guarantee that no violations are made.

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