May 5, 2010

Summer is right around the corner, and we know some of you have summer interns in your places of business.  Internships can raise many legal issues (e.g., state and federal payroll taxes; state wage payments laws; workers’ compensation; civil rights laws; health, liability, and workers’ compensation insurance; and in the case of college or university intern programs, issues involving academic credit and degree requirements). One particular area of concern has been, and continues to be, whether unpaid internships comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

Recently, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division announced that it is stepping up enforcement efforts on unpaid internships that violate the FLSA.  The head of the Wage and Hour Division summarized, “If you’re a for-profit employer or you want to pursue an internship and not be paid and still be in compliance with the law.”  In April 2010, the Division published the attached Fact Sheet that discusses the criteria that are considered in determining whether an intern must be paid.

If you are planning on having an unpaid intern in your place of business this summer, or at any time, we strongly recommend you consider the criteria on the attached Fact Sheet and/or contact a member of Ahlers & Cooney’s Employment & Labor Law Practice Group for guidance.


About Ahlers & Cooney's Client Alerts

Our Client Alerts are intended to provide occasional general comments on new developments in Federal and State law and regulations which we believe might be of interest to our clients. The Client Alerts should not be considered opinions of Ahlers & Cooney, P.C., and are not intended to provide legal advice as a substitute for seeking professional counsel. Readers should not under any circumstance act upon the information in this publication without seeking specific professional counsel. Ahlers & Cooney will be pleased to provide additional details regarding any article upon request. Additional copies of this Client Alert may be obtained by contacting any attorney in the Firm or by visiting the Firm's website at
©2010 Ahlers & Cooney, P.C. All Rights Reserved.
NOTICE TO THE PUBLIC The determination of the need for legal services and the choice of a lawyer are extremely important decisions and should not be based solely upon advertisements or self-proclaimed expertise. This disclosure is required by rule of the Supreme Court of Iowa. Memberships and offices in legal fraternities and legal societies, technical and professional licenses, and memberships in scientific, technical and professional associations and societies of law or field of practice does not mean that a lawyer is a specialist or expert in a field of law, nor does it mean that such lawyer is necessarily any more expert or competent than any other lawyer. All potential clients are urged to make their own independent investigation and evaluation of any lawyer being considered. This notice is required by rule of the Supreme Court of Iowa.


Fact Sheet

« Back