Michael Schmidt

Michael Schmidt

Cozen O'Connor

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Latest Publications


Erecting a Legal Defense Through Social Media

I hope you had a very happy holiday season and New Year. Both seem to be distant memories at this point. Many of the upcoming posts in 2017 will undoubtedly address, and be impacted by, the nature of the new Trump...more

1/19/2017 - Employer Liability Issues Hiring & Firing Social Media Social Media Policy

2016/2017 Labor & Employment Observer

Activist NLRB Created More Problems For All Employers in 2016 - What Happens Under President Trump? During 2016, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or the Board) maintained its generally pro-union, anti-employer...more

1/12/2017 - 21st Century Cures Initiative ADA Affordable Care Act Ambush Election Rules Anti-Retaliation Provisions Antitrust Provisions Arbitration Asset Seizure Ban the Box Blacklist Browning-Ferris Industries of California Inc. Criminal Investigations DACA Decriminalization of Marijuana Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) Disability Discrimination DOJ DOL Dream Act E-Verify EB-5 EB-5 Regional Centers Educational Institutions EEO-1 EEOC Email Policies Employee Definition Employee Handbooks Employee Restrooms Employees Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Federal Contractors FLSA Foreign Workers FTC Gender-Based Pay Discrimination Gig Economy Graduate Students H-1B Healthcare Hospitals HRA Immigrants Immigration Reform Independent Contractors Intellectual Property Protection Joint Employers Management Rights Clauses Marijuana Medical Marijuana Mexico Minimum Salary Minimum Wage Misclassification NLRA NLRB Non-Compete Agreements Obama Administration OFCCP Over-Time Pay Transparency Persuader Rules Protected Activity Right to Strike Section 7 Sick Leave Small Business Staffing Agencies Teaching Assistants Trump Administration Unions USCIS Wage and Hour Whistleblower Protection Policies Whistleblowers White-Collar Exemptions Witness Statements

Noncompete Agreements: New Considerations Under Both Employment and Antitrust Law

BREAKING NEWS: There were a lot of employment law developments in 2016. In fact, there were a lot of developments in the world generally in 2016. The legal landscape when it comes to employers and employees was not any...more

1/4/2017 - Antitrust Provisions DOJ FTC Non-Compete Agreements

It’s Still The Relationships, Stupid – 2016 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, – and particularly in this latest political election year – that I am reminded of that election campaign more than...more

12/27/2016 - Employer Liability Issues Employment Policies Social Media Social Media Policy Social Networks

Poetic Justice – 2016 Wrap Up (Part 1 of 2)

This is the time of year to anxiously look forward to all that is anticipated to come in 2017. But it is also the time to look back at all that has happened in 2016. Rather than simply give you links to all of my stimulating...more

12/23/2016 - Class Action Arbitration Waivers Holiday Parties NLRB Trump Administration Wearable Technology

DOL Punts on Portable Device Regulations, For Now

“I wish the U.S. Department of Labor could issue more workplace regulations before Inauguration Day,” – said no employer anywhere ever. Questions about the new overtime regulations aside, there might just be another...more

12/19/2016 - DOL Electronic Devices FLSA Social Media Wage and Hour

Fa-La-La-La-La, La-La-La-La

In the holiday spirit? Find yourself singing alone in the car to Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” on Lite FM (of course, I don’t, I’m just asking you)? Thought the most interesting thing on your Twitter feed...more

12/13/2016 - Employer Liability Issues Holiday Parties Holidays Wine & Alcohol

The Power of Autowrong in Life and Employment Litigation

Are you tired of people refusing to take accountability for their actions? Tired of excuse after excuse for potentially offensive words? Sick of folks blaming grammar lunacy on their iPhones? If you answered “yes” to all...more

11/17/2016 - Electronic Communications Electronic Devices Social Media

What Clinton, Um, Trump Means For Social Media and Employment Law

This was supposed to be posted last Wednesday morning. All kinds of great insight into what a(nother) Clinton White House would mean for social media and employment law. Then came the required post-election cut and paste....more

11/15/2016 - NLRB Presidential Elections Protected Concerted Activity Social Media Trump Administration

FTC and DOJ Issue Guidance on Application of Antitrust Law to Employee Hiring and Compensation

On Thursday, October 20, 2016, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Department of Justice Antitrust Division (DOJ) jointly released Antitrust Guidance for Human Resources Professionals (guidance) to explain how...more

10/26/2016 - Compensation DOJ Enforcement FTC Hiring & Firing Human Resources Professionals Wage-Fixing

Banning Employee E-Mailing?

“Everything in moderation,” I’m always saying. Exercise, TV, French fries. Well, I tend to moderate my exercise a tad more than my French fries, but I digress. What about technology? Social media? Those who know me know that...more

6/3/2016 - DOL Electronic Devices Email Wage and Hour

The Final Four – Do Employers Care?

Much time will be spent this week in person and online trying to make money on the NCAA tournament. There’s the blog hook for today. Online technology, and social media in particular, have made it much easier for employees to...more

3/18/2016 - Basketball Employment Policies Gambling NCAA Social Media Sports Betting

Beware the Facebook Settlement Disclosure

We continue to toe the line between privacy rights and social media activity. Typically, though, it’s the employee looking to protect the privacy principle. Not this time. In the context of settlement agreements in employment...more

3/8/2016 - Facebook Non-Disclosure Agreement Online Platforms Public Forum Public Statements Settlement Agreements Social Media Wage and Hour

Won’t You Please, Please Yelp Me?

Yelp, I need somebody - Yelp, not just anybody - Yelp, you know I need someone - Yelp! My apologies to the Beatles. But the notion that one can’t do it alone and expect to be protected, may just be an apt moral in today’s...more

3/1/2016 - Free Speech Hiring & Firing NLRA NLRB Online Reviews Termination Yelp

Labor and Employment Observer 2015/2016

The Irony in Regulating Employee Social Media Speech: the NLRB vs. the FTC - BREAKING NEWS: Employees use social media. A lot. And, in a related story, Bush beat Gore, according to the Supreme Court. All breaking news,...more

1/7/2016 - Employer Liability Issues Exempt-Employees FLSA FTC Gun Laws NLRB Pregnancy Discrimination Social Media Policy

It’s Still The Relationships, Stupid – 2015 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, – and particularly in this latest political election year – that I am reminded of that election campaign more than...more

12/30/2015 - Mobile Devices Protected Concerted Activity Social Media Social Media Policy Social Networks

Poetic Justice – 2015 Wrap Up (Part 1 of 2)

This is the time of year to anxiously look forward to all that is anticipated to come in 2016. But it is also the time to look back at all that has happened in 2015. Rather than simply give you links to all of my stimulating...more

12/29/2015 - Facebook Free Speech NLRB Social Media Wearable Technology

Happy New Year: New Resolutions for New York in the New Year

Another New Year is upon us, and employers doing business in New York will begin 2016 with some significant New Year’s resolutions. So here are the top five new laws signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo that are designed to...more

12/9/2015 - Anti-Pay Secrecy Attorney's Fees Family Status Discrimination Gender-Based Pay Discrimination Popular Reasonable Accommodation Sex Discrimination Sexual Harassment

Like It Or Not, Your Employees Can Like It

It gets boring to blog just about the NLRB. We need some judicial action to get the juices flowing a little more. We got a little something last week. Question: Is merely clicking the “like” button on Facebook tantamount to...more

10/28/2015 - Employment Policies Facebook Free Speech NLRB Privacy Policy Protected Concerted Activity Social Media Social Media Policy Social Networks

Peeple Are Peeple

The English electronic band Depeche Mode sang that more than 32 years ago. Still applies, for some. Social media has made it easier and quicker for everyone – your employees included – to post their feelings online...more

10/6/2015 - Employment Policies Mobile Apps Online Platforms Social Media Social Media Policy Social Networks

This Is No Laughing Matter

I heard a new statistic yesterday and was all excited. LOL! Thought it would be some big news event that I could blog about this morning, maybe even debate with my labor and employment colleagues. ROTFL! Like, how the number...more

8/14/2015 - Facebook Online Platforms Religious Accommodation Religious Freedom Social Media Wage and Hour

An Apple A Day Keeps Employers Awake

Bloomberg just reported last week that the Apple Watch “is eroding demand for traditional timepieces.” That’s not just a bad sign for watch retailers, but for employers who continue to have to keep up with the ever-shrinking...more

8/11/2015 - Apple Apple Watch Employment Policies GINA Google Google Glass Harassment Healthcare NLRB Non-Disclosure Agreement OSHA Popular Proprietary Information Smartphones Trade Secrets Wearable Technology

When Political Discourse “Trumps” Workplace Rules

You thought Donald Trump was all over the place before. The golf courses, beauty pageants and reality shows paled in comparison to what we have seen and heard in 2015. Jumping into the ring of this election cycle’s...more

7/14/2015 - Employment Discrimination Employment Policies Harassment Human Resources Professionals Immigration Reform Mexico Social Media Trump Administration

WTF Day 2

As in, “Way Too Frequently” we are hearing and reading about cyber and data breaches. The ironic hack du jour: LastPass. Wait for it: A company that lets a customer store all of his or her passwords online in a single storage...more

6/17/2015 - Cyber Attacks Cybersecurity Data Breach Data Protection Hackers Passwords


WTF already?! As in, “where’s the fairness?” Time for an acronym update from our favorite government acronym, the NLRB. You will certainly remember that we have recommended asking yourself three questions before determining...more

6/16/2015 - Discipline Employer Liability Issues First Amendment NLRA NLRB Offensive Language Protected Concerted Activity Unions

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