Katharine Parker

Katharine Parker

Proskauer Rose LLP

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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

D.C. Amends Wage Theft Prevention Act to Increase Employer Obligations and Penalties

Absent Congressional action, employers in the District of Columbia will soon face a slew of new requirements and penalties as a result of the Wage Theft Prevention Amendment Act of 2014 (the "Act"), which amends a law that...more

10/28/2014 - Employer Liability Issues Wage and Hour Wage Theft Wage Theft Prevention Act Wages

New Ebola Orders from NY and NJ Governors Provide Additional Relief for Employers

Employers in New York and New Jersey who were wondering whether to require employees returning from the three West African nations of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea who had direct contact with a person with Ebola to stay...more

10/27/2014 - CDC Ebola Employer Liability Issues FMLA

New CDC Ebola Monitoring Protocol is Good News for Employers

The CDC has just announced new active post-arrival monitoring for all travelers entering the U.S. from Liberia, Sierra Leone or Guinea. ...more

10/24/2014 - CDC Ebola Employer Liability Issues Health Care Providers Healthcare Hospitals Physicians

Accessible Technology

As most of our readers know, companies that are federal contractors and subcontractors are subject to new rules (which became effective on March 24, 2014) with respect to individuals with disabilities. The new rules amended...more

10/22/2014 - Accessibility Rules Contractors Disability Federal Contractors Reasonable Accommodation Rehabilitation Act Subcontractors

Colorado Supreme Court Set To Decide Seminal Drug Testing Case

As reported by Joe Palazzolo of the Wall Street Journal (subscription required), Colorado’s Supreme Court recently heard arguments on whether an employer can lawfully terminate an employee for off-the-job use of medical...more

10/21/2014 - Drug Testing Employee Rights Employer Liability Issues Medical Marijuana

Applicants & Employees Can Refuse to Disclose Expunged Criminal Records Under New Louisiana Law

A new Louisiana law that took effect on August 1 serves to prevent employers from inquiring into an applicant’s or employee’s expunged criminal records. The law does provide for certain exceptions such as where the position...more

10/17/2014 - Ban the Box Criminal Records Disclosure Expungement Job Applicants

Philadelphia Requires Reasonable Accommodation of Nursing Mothers

On September 3, Philadelphia made it unlawful for an employer to fail to reasonably accommodate the need to express breast milk, where the accommodation does not impose an undue hardship. ...more

10/16/2014 - Breastfeeding Employee Rights Employer Liability Issues Local Ordinance Reasonable Accommodation

Protecting Healthcare and Other Employees From Ebola

News that a U.S. based health-care worker in Dallas has contracted Ebola while caring for a patient with the disease has raised questions about the protections that health care facilities and other employers must provide for...more

10/16/2014 - Africa CDC Ebola Healthcare Healthcare Professionals OSHA Safety Precautions

New News on Ebola May Require Changes in Employer Procedures

New news reports on Ebola, both about the epidemic in West Africa and new details about the health care workers in Dallas who have been infected, have heightened employer concerns. Today Andrew Morse of the Wall Street...more

10/16/2014 - Africa Ebola World Health Organization

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