Michael Schmidt

Michael Schmidt

Cozen O'Connor

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Statements Are As Important As Actions Are In Sports Too

I often like to use the world of sports as a backdrop for employment law and social media points. After all, athletes are essentially employees of the teams they play for, right? And here’s another recent case in point of how...more

7/8/2014 - Athletes Social Media Sports

For The Love Of G-D, Don't Say You Love Me

We have come to this in our workplaces, in the lyrics of Annie Lennox: “No more ‘I love you’s.” Please enjoy today’s guest post from one of your employees: I have difficulty getting close to people. I have trouble...more

6/13/2014 - EEOC Employer Liability Issues Employment Policies NLRB Religion Religious Discrimination Social Networks

The Truth About As*holes

Here’s the truth: we are a litigious society. For a lot of reasons beyond the scope of this blog, a smarter workforce with ever-increasing access to information and resources continues to file employment lawsuits in record...more

6/12/2014 - Automotive Industry Corporate Counsel Employee Rights Hiring & Firing NLRA NLRB Obscenity Popular Protected Concerted Activity Section 7 Termination Trucking Industry

Data Breach Laws Continue to Come

Retail. Financial services. Health care. Energy. Not an industry has been spared when it comes to recent data and cyber breaches, and the colossal damage that occurs to the interests of the company, its employees, and third...more

6/10/2014 - Audits Cybersecurity Data Breach Data Protection Employer Liability Issues Hackers New Legislation Personally Identifiable Information Popular Privacy Laws Social Networks

Living With Others Thinking You're Fu*king Crazy

One of the issues we address in this blog is the notion that social media doesn’t necessarily create new claims, but rather serves as a quicker and easier platform to apply traditional claims that have existed forever. Take...more

5/9/2014 - Defamation Employment Policies Social Networks

Goodbye Precedent, Hello Forced Speech?

The NLRB continues to push for a share of the employment law spotlight. It also continues to act in a way that shows why its “precedent” is truly only “precedent” when the political winds don’t change. ...more

5/6/2014 - Email Email Policies Employee Rights Employer Mandates NLRB Section 7 Social Media Policy Social Networks Unfair Labor Practices

Another Federal Player in the Social Media Sandbox

There seems to be room in the sandbox for lots of people to play. Recent recesses have seen the NLRB dominate the discourse over the do’s and don’ts when it comes to social media and employment law. But another federal...more

4/8/2014 - Discrimination EEOC Employer Liability Issues Harassment NLRB Right to Privacy Social Media Title VII

Yes, Disclosures On Social Media Are Still Disclosures

You can’t make this stuff up. Have you read this one? I can’t blame you if you haven’t. Between the serious and tragic stories dominating the news from Malaysia and Russia, this little employment law nugget snuck into...more

3/24/2014 - Disclosure Social Media Young Lawyers

Developing a Corporate Strategy to Address Known Risks

Matt Dunning at BusinessInsurance.com announced some eye-opening news: “Despite its ubiquity in corporate communications and marketing, a startling percentage of companies has no formal strategy for addressing the liability...more

3/24/2014 - Risk Assessment Risk Management

Announcing a Job Move on LinkedIn or Facebook - Breach of Contract or Fair Game?

It is always worthwhile to talk about current developments in the area of social media and employment law, and to look back at their contextual import. Much of the fun, however, lies in playing the forecasting game, and...more

2/21/2014 - Facebook LinkedIn Non-Compete Agreements Non-Solicitation Agreements Social Media

To Be Disrespectful Or Not To Be - That Is The Question

We’ve spent a lot of time talking about how the NLRB continues to have problems with policies and practices that prohibit employees from engaging in vague, undefined behavior that could constitute “protected concerted...more

2/4/2014 - ADEA Civil Rights Act Employee Rights NLRB Protected Concerted Activity Title VII

Seahawks or Broncos - Do Employers Care?

I certainly don’t care that much. My team ended its year early, again. However, many people do care, for various reasons. There is, of course, the football game itself and the rooting interests that exist. The fact that the...more

1/31/2014 - Sports Gambling Super Bowl

Once In Violation, Always In Violation

I loved the holiday season. But if I could look back and point to one part of the 2013 holidays that really bothered me, it is this: the incessant Michael Bolton appearances in those Honda commercials. Every two seconds,...more

1/21/2014 - Compliance Dress Codes NLRA NLRB

Reminder of Two New Obligations for New York City Employers

Employers operating in New York City should be reminded of two significant additions to the checklist of employment obligations that will become effective in the coming weeks....more

1/20/2014 - Discrimination Employee Rights Gender Discrimination Pregnancy Pregnancy Discrimination Sick Leave

Labor And Employment Observer - 2013/2014

In This Issue: Message from the Chair; Social Media and the Workplace: 2013 and Beyond; Unpaid Internships: Training Ground or Legal Landmine?; Supreme Court’s Nassar Decision Sets Higher Causation Standard for a...more

1/7/2014 - Affirmative Action Background Checks Big Data Causation D.R. Horton Disability Discrimination DOL ENDA FMLA Minimum Wage OFCCP Religious Discrimination Same-Sex Marriage SCOTUS Social Media Unpaid Interns US v Windsor UT Southwestern Medical v Nassar Veterans Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act

Happy New Year - Now Don't Let The Ball Drop

Ryan Seacrest paid homage again to Dick Clark. The latest musical crazes performed live from hot spots around the globe. Miley Cyrus thinks we’re still interested (for those who were at some point). They all helped us and our...more

1/6/2014 - Compliance Cybersecurity Data Protection Wage and Hour

It's The Relationships, Stupid - 2013 Wrap Up (Part 2 of 2)

It is this time every year, as I am wrapping things up over at “social media and employment law blog” central, that I am reminded of that election campaign more than twenty years ago when Bill Clinton coined the phrase “It’s...more

12/24/2013 - Employer Liability Issues Social Media

Poetic Justice - 2013 Wrap Up (Part 1 of 2)

This is the time of year to anxiously look forward to all that is anticipated to come in 2014. But it is also the time to look back at all that has happened in 2013. Rather than simply give you links to all of the stimulating...more

12/23/2013 - Bring Your Own Device Cybersecurity Facebook Free Speech Hackers Harassment Holidays Logos NLRB Passwords Social Media Wage and Hour

Lessons From Naked Pictures

Sometimes you can find great employment law lessons in the craziest places and lawsuits, and even non-employment law lawsuits. This month, a decision was issued by a Family Court Judge in Brooklyn, New York that, while an...more

12/18/2013 - Employer Liability Issues Photographs Social Media

Double Take - An NLRB Win For Employers?

In prior posts, I summarized the three-step analysis that employers should use before taking adverse action against an employee because of that employee’s social media activity: 1. Was the social...more

11/20/2013 - Compliance NLRA NLRB Protected Concerted Activity Social Media

Done With Lady Gaga

Whether it’s on the phone, in my office, or just on the street, people – I mean, hoards of people – have been asking me the same one question: What’s happening with Lady Gaga? A few weeks ago, on September 30th, I...more

10/24/2013 - Lady Gaga On-Call Employees Unpaid Overtime

What's Not To Like About Protected Speech?

At the expense of sounding too corny, sometimes these issues are fascinating. As much as they are practical, from a takeaway standpoint. Back on May 8, 2012, I blogged about an interesting federal case in Virginia that...more

10/23/2013 - First Amendment Free Speech NLRA Social Media Social Media Policy

Two New Measures in New York: Wage Deduction Rules and Pregnancy Accommodation

Most employers tend to focus on federal law as a source of labor and employment obligations. However, employers should also pay careful attention to state and local laws on workplace issues. The first half of this month has...more

10/17/2013 - Discrimination Overpayment Pregnancy Discrimination Reasonable Accommodation Wage Advances Wage Deductions Wages

Going Gaga Over Wage And Hour Obligations

What would you say is one of the biggest impacts on employers of this new (well, maybe, not so new) era of technology? The inability of employers to know about and keep track of time spent by employees working off premises...more

10/1/2013 - Lady Gaga Mobile Devices Over-Time Wage and Hour Work Schedules

Post Summer Part 5 of 5 - Continuing the Discovery

Last week began this series of five posts to highlight five developments from this past summer in the area of social media and employment law. In the final Part 5 today: The discoverability of private social media posts in...more

9/20/2013 - Discovery Evidence Rest and Meal Break Social Media Wage and Hour

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