9 Steps to Handle DOL Audit Requests

Businesses which sometimes overlook procedures (especially if written) may sometimes face a U.S. and / or state Department of Labor (DOL) notification for an audit. Is this a time to panic?  No. It is a time stay calm and be organized.

If managed effectively, DOL audits provide a productive opportunity for employers to review and analyze past practices and improve on future practices. Audits involve financial operations, employment law compliance, and evaluation of operational efficiencies. In fact, periodic (internal or external) audits are integral to the needs of management and it’s the company’s business processes.

To best prepare, consider the following items:

  1. Determine which division of the U.S. or state DOL is investigating your business.
  2. Contact an HR professional or attorney specializing in employment law to discuss the audit and to get information about your rights and responsibilities.
  3. Contact the DOL to confirm or reschedule the appointment.
  4. Determine which member(s) of your management team will participate in the initial meeting with the auditor.
  5. If the notification letter requests documents, be sure to make copies for your records, since the auditor may take the original records off-site.
  6. Meet with the auditor in a confidential, quiet area.
  7. If the auditor requests to interview employees, be prepared to provide a private room for such interviews.
  8. Respond only to questions that the auditor directly asks. Do not offer additional information unless requested to do so.
  9. Stick closely to any follow-up requests and / or deadlines required by the auditor.

While maintaining respect and cooperation with the auditor, you may discover important resolutions critical to the continued success of your business.

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