It’s summer, and our employer clients often are asked whether they would bring on interns.

The Fair Labor Standards Act requires generally that employees receive a minimum wage, and in many cases overtime pay.  

The EEOC has established guidelines for nonpaid interns. The failure to consult those can lead to serious problems.  They include that:

  1. The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the facilities of the employer, is similar to training which would be given in an educational environment;
  2. The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern;
  3. The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff;
  4. The employer that provides the training derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern; and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded;
  5. The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
  6. The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship.

Exemptions and additional requirements exist.  Please let us help your understand the law and remain compliant.