Labor Department to Rescue College Kids From Illegal Unpaid Internships

By
"Hello, intern. I have some tasks for you that are irrelevant to your future career but will make my life easier." Photo: iStockPhoto

If you're an unpaid intern or the employer of an unpaid intern, don't be surprised if you hear from the Labor Department soon. Led by M. Patricia Smith, its top law enforcement official, the department is cracking down on illegal unpaid internships, which is pretty much all of them.


“If you’re a for-profit employer or you want to pursue an internship with a for-profit employer, there aren’t going to be many circumstances where you can have an internship and not be paid and still be in compliance with the law,” said Nancy J. Leppink, the acting director of the department’s wage and hour division.

This is good news for all of those interns spending their days walking their boss's dog. But for the two interns in the Times story who already spent summers wiping off doorknobs and sweeping bathroom floors, it's too little too late.

Growth of Unpaid Internships May Be Illegal, Officials Say [NYT]