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First Circuit Affirms FAAAA Preemption of Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law

On May 11, 2016, the First Circuit Court of Appeals issued the latest of several decisions supporting and furthering federal preemption of the Massachusetts independent contractor statute for businesses that qualify as motor...more

Massachusetts Noncompete Bill Advances, but Passage Remains Uncertain

In March, we reported that Massachusetts House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo had announced his support for legislative restrictions on employee noncompetition agreements, signaling a potential turning point in the long-running...more

Rhode Island Raises Minimum Wage Again: Now $9.60 per Hour

On June 22, 2015, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo signed into law another increase to the state’s minimum wage. This marks the fourth straight year that Rhode Island has raised its minimum wage. Effective January 1,...more

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Issues Two Significant Opinions for Employers

In April 2015, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts issued two important decisions providing guidance for employers on the scope of Massachusetts’s wage and hour laws. In one decision, the Court held that employers may...more

President Obama Proposes Legislation Requiring Businesses to Notify Customers of Data Security Breaches Within 30 Days

In a speech given before the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Monday, January 12, President Obama proposed federal legislation that would impose a nationwide standard on companies that experience a data security breach. The...more

Supreme Court Declines to Hear Challenge of Illinois Independent Contractor Classification Law

On October 14, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States refused to consider a challenge to the Illinois Employee Classification Act, which classifies workers in the construction industry as employees unless they can meet...more

Another Increase in the Rhode Island Minimum Wage to $9/Hour

On July 3, 2014, Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee signed into law a measure that will raise the state’s minimum wage to $9.00 per hour, effective January 1, 2015. The legislation, which will increase the state’s minimum...more

Rhode Island Court Considers Harassment and Discrimination Claims Involving Alleged Harasser and Victim of the Same Sex

The U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island recently considered the application of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Rhode Island Fair Employment Practices Act (FEPA) in the context of an alleged...more

Rhode Island Court Clarifies Sunday Premium Pay Laws, Holds Employer Liable for Back Pay and Assesses Penalty

The Rhode Island Superior Court recently issued a decision that clarifies the Sunday premium pay laws and regulations in Rhode Island. In affirming a Department of Labor and Training (DOLT) decision on appeal, a Superior...more

First Circuit Dismisses FCA Claim For Failure To Plead Fraud With Particularity And Denies Further Amendments Of Complaint

On December 6, 2013, in U.S. ex rel. Helen Ge, M.D. v. Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (No. 13-1088), the First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the dismissal of Dr. Helen Ge’s qui tam actions against her former...more

First Circuit Affirms Ruling that Employee Who Worked Only 615 Hours in 12 Months Is Not Eligible for FMLA Leave

On October 9, 2013, the First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of an employer on claims brought under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) by a former employee. The court held that the employee...more

R.I. Enacts “Ban-the-Box” Law, Limiting Employer Inquiries into Applicants’ Criminal Histories

Effective January 1, 2014, a new law in Rhode Island will ban employers from inquiring on job applications about the criminal histories of applicants. ...more

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