Joseph C. O'Keefe

Joseph C. O'Keefe

Proskauer Rose LLP

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SEC Approves FINRA Rule Strengthening Background Checks

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has approved a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) rule requiring member firms to strengthen their background investigation of applicants seeking registration. ...more

1/13/2015 - Background Checks Broker-Dealer FINRA Registration SEC

Trends in N.J. Whistleblowing and Retaliation Law – 2014 Roundup

2014 was another busy year for developments in whistleblowing and retaliation law in New Jersey. This blog post summarizes noteworthy state and federal cases for employers to consider in the new year....more

1/2/2015 - Adverse Employment Action Audio Recording Confidential Documents Dodd-Frank Employer Liability Issues False Claims Act Health Care Providers Healthcare Medical Devices Public Employers Quality of Care Standards Retaliation Trade Secrets Whistleblowers

Trends in New Jersey Employment Law - December 2014

2014 Year in Review—the Top 10 Trends in New Jersey Employment Law - 2014 was another busy year for developments in New Jersey employment law. This newsletter examines noteworthy developments in ten key...more

1/2/2015 - Arbitration Background Checks Criminal Background Checks Discrimination Ebola Employer Liability Issues FMLA Hiring & Firing Job Applicants Sick Leave State of Emergency Wage and Hour Whistleblower Protection Policies

New Jersey’s Minimum Wage Rises to $8.38 in the New Year

Due to to an increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI), New Jersey’s minimum wage will rise to $8.38 per hour starting January 1, 2015. This is the second consecutive year that the state’s minimum wage will increase....more

12/22/2014 - Employer Mandates Minimum Wage Wage and Hour

Lawsuits Grow Under “Old” Pennsylvania Background Check Law

A growing number of states and localities have enacted laws that restrict employers from considering certain types of criminal records in hiring and other personnel decisions. Though many of these laws are more recent,...more

12/18/2014

NJ Supreme Court to Rule on SOL Waiver

Last week, the New Jersey Supreme Court agreed to address whether to uphold a provision in a job application that limited the time in which an employee could sue the company to no more than 6 months after an alleged adverse...more

12/17/2014 - Adverse Employment Action Applications Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Job Applicants Statute of Limitations

NJ Supreme Court to Decide Whether LAD Protects Divorcing Employee

Last week, the New Jersey Supreme Court agreed to address whether the protection against marital status discrimination under the state’s Law Against Discrimination (LAD) serves to prevent an employer from discharging an...more

10/30/2014 - Anti-Discrimination Policies Discrimination Divorce

FINRA Proposes Rule Strengthening Background Checks

Last month, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a proposed rule requiring member firms to strengthen their background investigations of applicants seeking registration. The proposed rule adopts,...more

10/27/2014 - Background Checks FCRA FINRA Nasdaq Proposed Regulation Registration

FCRA Preempts Tortious Interference Claim, Says NJ Court

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)—a federal law that regulates the collection and use of “consumer information”—covers employers who solicit third-party vendors known as consumer reporting agencies (CRAs) to run background...more

10/23/2014 - Background Checks Banking Sector Credit Reporting Agencies Defamation Employer Liability Issues FCRA Hiring & Firing Preemption Tortious Interference

Four More New Jersey Cities Enact Sick Leave Laws

Four New Jersey municipalities—Passaic, Paterson, Irvington, and East Orange—recently enacted ordinances requiring employers to provide paid sick leave to their employees....more

10/20/2014 - Employee Rights Local Ordinance New Regulations Paid Leave Sick Leave

Revocation of Ex-Convict’s Job Offer Did Not Violate State Law, Says PA Court

Pennsylvania, like many states, has restricted employer use of criminal history in hiring and other employment decisions. Under the Criminal History Record Information Act (CHRIA), Pennsylvania employers may “consider”...more

10/17/2014 - Criminal Records Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Job Applicants

Trends in New Jersey Employment Law - October 2014

Four More New Jersey Cities Enact Sick Leave Laws - Four New Jersey municipalities—Passaic, Paterson, Irvington, and East Orange—recently enacted ordinances requiring employers to provide paid sick leave to their...more

10/17/2014 - Anti-Retaliation Provisions Collective Bargaining Employee Rights Employment Policies Local Ordinance Notice Requirements Paid Leave Sick Leave

Trends in New Jersey Employment Law - September 2014

Third Circuit Renders Important Decisions on FMLA and FLSA - In recent weeks, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit rendered a trio of significant employment law decisions....more

9/15/2014 - Appeals Colleges Employer Liability Issues Fitness for Duty Exams FLSA FMLA Hospitals Notice Requirements Universities

Trends in New Jersey Employment Law - August 2014

LAD Roundup - In recent weeks, New Jersey's primary employment discrimination statute—the Law Against Discrimination (LAD)—has been the focus of judicial scrutiny....more

8/18/2014 - Anti-Discrimination Policies Discrimination Employee Rights Employer Liability Issues

New Jersey Bans the Box for Private Employers

Governor Christie has signed The Opportunity to Compete Act, which takes effect March 1, 2015 and prevents many private employers in the State of New Jersey from asking prospective employees about their criminal history on...more

8/14/2014 - Ban the Box Criminal Background Checks Employee Rights Job Applicants

CEPA Roundup

In recent weeks, New Jersey’s primary whistleblower statute—the Conscientious Employee Protection Act (“CEPA”)—has been the subject of increased judicial scrutiny. In Hitesman v. Bridgeway, Inc., 214 N.J. 235 (2014),...more

7/15/2014 - CEPA Employer Liability Issues Retaliation Whistleblowers

Trends in New Jersey Employment Law - July 2014

In recent weeks, New Jersey's primary whistleblower statute—the Conscientious Employee Protection Act ("CEPA")—has been the subject of increased judicial scrutiny....more

7/14/2014 - Employer Liability Issues Whistleblower Protection Policies Whistleblowers

New Jersey Court Okays Provision in Job Application Reducing Statute of Limitations

In Rodriguez v. Raymours Furniture Co., Inc., No. A-4329-12T3, 2014 WL 2765273 (App. Div. June 19, 2014), New Jersey's Appellate Division upheld a provision in a job application that limited the time in which an employee...more

7/10/2014 - Adverse Employment Action Applications Contract Formation Corporate Counsel Hiring & Firing Job Applicants Statute of Limitations

Tennessee Enacts Trio of Employment Laws

Tennessee's governor recently signed three new employment laws. The first, a social media law, takes effect on January 1, 2015, and provides applicants and employees with social media protections similar to those in fifteen...more

6/23/2014 - Discrimination Employer Liability Issues Employment Policies Hiring & Firing New Regulations Social Networks

Newark Sick Leave Law Update

The Newark Department of Child and Family Well-Being (Department) recently issued a press release on the City's new paid sick leave ordinance (Ordinance) together with FAQ forms for employees and employers. In the release,...more

6/18/2014 - Employee Rights Employer Liability Issues Paid Leave Sick Leave Union Membership

Third Circuit Embraces "Lower Bar" for Successor Liability under the FLSA

In Thompson v. Real Estate Mortgage Network, No. 12-3828, 2014 WL 1317137 (3d Cir. Apr. 3, 2014), the Third Circuit adopted a standard of successor liability that will lower the bar for whether an employer can be held...more

5/7/2014

New Jersey Employers Must Display Two Updated Posters

The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development ("Department") recently updated two of the posters that employers must conspicuously display in the workplace. The first updated poster—the New Jersey State Wage...more

3/28/2014 - Employee Rights NLRB Wage and Hour

Newark Follows Jersey City with Sick Leave Law

On January 29, 2014, the Mayor of Newark, New Jersey signed into law an Ordinance requiring employers to provide paid sick leave to their employees, effective May 29, 2014, or, for employees who are covered by a collective...more

3/10/2014 - Collective Bargaining Employee Definition FLSA Human Resources Professionals Notice Requirements Paid Leave Personnel Records Posting Requirements Sick Leave

A Woolley Situation: District of New Jersey Refuses to Enforce Arbitration Clause in Employee Handbook

New Jersey employers should consider the risks of including an arbitration agreement in a standard employment handbook in light of a recent decision by the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey. In...more

2/28/2014 - Arbitration Employee Handbooks Mandatory Arbitration Clauses

New Jersey "Sandy" Law Preserves Employee Eligibility for Leave and Benefits

To be eligible for leave under New Jersey's Family Leave Act (FLA) or the Security and Financial Empowerment Act (SAFE Act), an employee must have been employed for at least 12 months and have worked at least 1,000 base hours...more

2/6/2014 - Employee Benefits Employee Rights FMLA Paid Leave SAFE Act Unpaid Leave

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