Katharine Parker

Katharine Parker

Proskauer Rose LLP

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DOL Issues Final Rule Redefining “Spouse” Under FMLA

Last Wednesday the Department of Labor (DOL) issued its Final Rule revising the definition of “spouse” under the Family and Medical Leave Act....more

3/1/2015 - 'Place of Celebration' Rule Common Law Marriage DOL FMLA Leave of Absence Same-Sex Marriage Spouses

Fourth Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment against EEOC in Background Check Suit

Last week, in Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) v. Freeman, No. 13-2365 (4th Cir. Feb. 20, 2105), the Fourth Circuit affirmed the award of summary judgment against the EEOC in its suit alleging that the...more

2/24/2015 - Criminal Background Checks Disparate Impact EEOC Employee Credit Checks Evidence Expert Testimony Hiring & Firing Summary Judgment Title VII

Affordable Care Act Presents New Risks to Employers Who Misclassify Workers

As our readers know, federal and state departments of labor have intensified their scrutiny of independent contractor arrangements and are coordinating with the federal and state taxing authorities when misclassifications are...more

2/16/2015 - Affordable Care Act DOL Independent Contractors Misclassification Penalties

Employee Gripe Apps: Should Companies Be Concerned?

The Wall Street Journal recently published an article by Lindsay Gellman on a new app by Collectively that allows users to post anonymous reviews of and complaints about their employers. The app is cheekily called...more

1/26/2015 - Anonymity Corporate Counsel Free Speech Glassdoor Mobile Apps Online Reviews Social Media Social Media Policy

Governor Cuomo Will Seek Increase to Minimum Wage

Governor Cuomo announced Sunday that he will propose raising the minimum wage in New York State to $10.50 per hour and in New York City to $11.50 by 2016. As previously reported in the New York Times, the Governor had...more

1/20/2015 - Andrew Cuomo Minimum Wage Proposed Legislation

Michigan Protects Employers from Negligent Hiring and Retention Claims

On January 1, a new Michigan law took effect to protect companies that hire ex-offenders who go on to cause damage or injury during the course of their employment. Louisiana, Georgia, Tennessee, and Texas recently passed...more

1/16/2015 - Criminal Records Hiring & Firing Job Applicants New Legislation Workplace Safety

No End In Sight For Wave of Paid Family and Sick Leave Laws

Employers have been scrambling to keep up with the multitude of paid sick leave laws that were passed in the last several years.  These laws vary by jurisdiction and often can’t be easily reconciled into a uniform policy — an...more

1/15/2015 - Corporate Counsel FMLA Healthy Families Act Obama Administration Paid Family Leave Insurance Program Paid Sick Leave Act Sick Leave

New Minnesota Expungement Law Helps Protect Employers from Liability

A new Minnesota law that took effect on January 1 expands the opportunities for ex-offenders to expunge their criminal records. In an effort to protect employers who hire employees with expunged records, the new law provides...more

1/6/2015 - Ban the Box Conditional Job Offers Criminal Background Checks Employer Liability Issues Expungement Hiring & Firing Job Applicants

New York Law Providing Unpaid Leave For Emergency Responders Takes Effect

New York recently passed a new leave law mandating unpaid leave for emergency responders. The law took effect December 22, 2014. Under the law, employers must provide unpaid leave to employees who serve as volunteer...more

1/6/2015 - Emergency Response Employer Mandates New Legislation Unpaid Leave Volunteers

Background Checks Headline in 2014

In 2014, background checks were a hot topic in state and local legislatures. Before this year, only 8 jurisdictions in the country had passed laws preventing private employers from asking job candidates about their criminal...more

12/24/2014 - Background Checks Ban the Box Criminal Background Checks EEOC Employee Credit Checks Employer Liability Issues FCRA Hiring & Firing Job Applicants

NYS Wage Theft Prevention Action – Summer 2014 Amendments Still Pending

This summer, we wrote about a bill passed by both the New York State Assembly and Senate to amend the New York State Wage Theft Prevention Act (the WTPA). Among other things, the amendments would eliminate the need for...more

12/17/2014 - Amended Legislation Employer Mandates Notice Requirements Wage Theft Prevention Act

NYC Council Debates Expansive “Ban the Box” Bill

A couple of months ago, we blogged about the New York City Council’s general support for a proposal that would effectively ban credit checks in hiring and other personnel decisions. As the council continues to debate credit...more

12/15/2014 - Ban the Box Conditional Job Offers Criminal Background Checks Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Job Applicants

Prince George’s County “Bans the Box”

Add another locality to the growing list that have “banned the box” for private employers. Starting January 20, 2015, employers with at least twenty-five full-time employees in Prince George’s County (MD) can no longer ask...more

12/12/2014 - Ban the Box Criminal Background Checks Hiring & Firing Interviews

Columbia, Missouri Joins “Ban the Box” Trend

Columbia, Missouri is the latest jurisdiction to “ban the box” by prohibiting private employers from making criminal inquiries on an employment application. The law, which took effect on December 1, 2014, only allows...more

12/9/2014 - Background Checks Ban the Box Criminal Background Checks Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Job Applicants Local Ordinance

San Francisco Issues Guidance for Employers and Contractors on Fair Chance Ordinance

San Francisco has posted FAQs explaining key provisions of the city’s so-called Fair Chance Ordinance (“Ordinance”), which took effect on August 13, 2014. The Ordinance “bans the box,” prohibiting most private employers and...more

12/9/2014 - Background Checks Ban the Box Criminal Background Checks Federal Contractors Hiring & Firing Job Applicants Local Ordinance San Francisco

EEOC Wellness Program Suits Highlight Need for Agency Guidance

The EEOC has been pursuing litigation against wellness programs of late, arguing that certain health plan penalties render participation in wellness program health screens ”involuntary” and thus violate Americans with...more

11/25/2014 - ADA Affordable Care Act EEOC Employer Liability Issues Enforcement Actions Medical Examinations Wellness Programs

Senate HELP Committee Issues Scathing Report on EEOC

Yesterday the Republicans on the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions issued a Minority Staff Report entitled, “EEOC: An Agency on the Wrong Track? Litigation Failures, Misfocused Priorities, and Lack of...more

11/25/2014 - EEOC Information Reports Legislative Agendas Legislative Committees

Gender Pay Gap – What Are Companies Doing?

It is no secret to our readers that the EEOC and the OFCCP have prioritized compensation discrimination issues as an enforcement priority. The general public, and hence employees, are also keenly aware of pay discrimination...more

11/20/2014 - Audits EEOC Employee Rights Equal Pay Gender-Based Pay Discrimination OFCCP Strategic Enforcement Plan

Rochester Issues FAQs on Newly Effective “Ban the Box” Ordinance

Rochester recently posted FAQs highlighting key provisions of the city’s “ban the box” ordinance, which takes effect today. The new law prohibits employers from inquiring into an applicant’s criminal conviction history until...more

11/18/2014 - Ban the Box Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Job Applicants New Legislation

FTC Issues Another Guide on Background Checks

As we reported in our prior alert, in March of this year, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) issued a short brochure—Background Checks: What Job Applicants and Employees Should Know—on the use of background checks in hiring...more

11/12/2014 - Background Checks Criminal Background Checks FTC Hiring & Firing Job Applicants

Montgomery County “Bans the Box”

Montgomery County, Maryland is the latest jurisdiction to “ban the box” by prohibiting private employers from making criminal inquiries on the initial employment application....more

11/11/2014 - Ban the Box Criminal Background Checks Employee Rights Job Applicants

Voters in Four Jurisdictions Pass Sick Leave Ballot Initiatives

The national sick leave trend continues to gain momentum as voters in Massachusetts, Trenton and Montclair, New Jersey, and Oakland, California approved ballot initiatives requiring employers within each jurisdiction to...more

11/9/2014 - Ballot Measures Popular Sick Leave

Class Action Stretches FCRA’s Limits to Target LinkedIn

With increasing regularity, states and localities have passed laws that limit the ability of private employers to inquire into or otherwise consider the criminal or credit histories of their prospective and current employees....more

11/4/2014 - Civil Rights Act Class Action Disparate Impact EEOC FCRA LinkedIn Racial Discrimination Title VII

Marijuana Users in Michigan Eligible for Unemployment

Medicinal marijuana users in Michigan who are lawfully terminated by their employer for failing a drug test are, according to the Michigan Court of Appeals, entitled to receive unemployment benefits....more

10/30/2014 - Drug Testing Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Medical Marijuana Termination Unemployment Benefits Unemployment Insurance

Connecticut Broadens Exemptions to Law Limiting Credit Checks

Connecticut has added mortgage brokers, lenders, and servicing companies to the list of “financial institutions” exempted under the state’s existing law limiting credit checks for purposes of employment. The amendment, which...more

10/28/2014 - Background Checks Brokers Consumer Lenders Credit Checks Exemptions Financial Institutions Hiring & Firing Job Applicants Loan Servicer Mortgage Brokers Mortgage Servicers

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