Risky Business: Using Unpaid Interns

July 30, 2012

Several high-profile lawsuits recently have been filed challenging the legality of unpaid internships, Dechert LLP attorney Jeffrey W. Rubin says in this BNA Insights article. He discusses the multiple elements of the test developed by the Labor Department’s Wage and Hour Division to determine whether individual interns or trainees are ‘’employees‘’ for purposes of the Fair Labor Standards Act and warns that all the criteria must be met to establish a nonemployment relationship.

Although there currently is a ‘’dearth‘’ of judicial precedent regarding unpaid internships, a situation that may soon change due to the pending lawsuits, Rubin examines court rulings involving the analogous situation of trainees and finds they have taken a variety of approaches. Finally, he offers precautions employers can take in structuring their internship programs so they comply with the FLSA.