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How small businesses can prepare for a DOL audit

Receiving a notice of an inspection from the Department of Labor (DOL) can be intimidating for a small business. These audits typically arise after a complaint is made by an employee, often due to a wage dispute.

These audits will usually come with little advanced notice, meaning your business may have to quickly scramble to compile proper documentation needed to defend yourself. This makes it critical that you act quickly. Prompt action on your part will better ensure you are able to achieve a more favorable outcome once the audit has been concluded.

If your business receives a notice about an upcoming DOL audit, these are the steps you can take to be better prepared before the auditor arrives for the inspection.

  • Request additional time: It was mentioned earlier that these audits typically have little advanced notice. However, you may still be able to request additional time to prepare. The amount of time you may be given will vary based on the auditor. That additional time may be valuable when gathering records and other documentation.
  • Gather relevant information: It can be a good idea to contact the auditor to get more details about the specifics of the audit. For instance, you may want to ask whether the subject of the dispute is in regards to incorrect classification of an employee or if it is a matter of overtime pay.
  • Name people that will focus on the auditIn order to increase the chances of a positive result from the audit, you may want to designate one or two people that focus on the audit. You may opt to name managers, or you may go outside of your business by having a lawyer work directly with the auditor. Having people dedicated to working on the audit will help you avoid having anything fall through the cracks while also helping to make the audit go more smoothly.

If you still have concerns about how a DOL audit may impact your business, it may be beneficial to speak with an attorney that is experienced practicing business law in Texas.

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