Thomas Wassel

Thomas Wassel

Cullen and Dykman LLP

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U.S. Supreme Court to Weigh in on Religious Exemptions from ERISA

The United States Supreme Court recently agreed to hear appeals from hospitals with Christian affiliations regarding the Employee Retirement Income Security Act’s (“ERISA”) exemption for church retirement plans. ...more

2/9/2017 - Appeals Church Plans Churches Class Action Employee Benefits ERISA Exemptions Hospitals Pensions Religious Exemption Religious Institutions Retirement Plan SCOTUS

President Trump’s Travel Ban: How the Executive Order is Affecting Colleges and Universities

On Friday, January 27, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order on immigration, which bars Syrian refugees from entering the United States indefinitely, suspends all refugee admissions under the U.S. Refugee Admissions...more

2/1/2017 - Colleges DHS Discrimination Educational Institutions Executive Orders Foreign Nationals Green Cards Immigrants Immigration Procedures Immigration Reform Iran Iraq Libya Refugees Somalia Sudan Syria Travel Ban Trump Administration Universities Visas Yemen

Supreme Court Upholds University of Texas Race-Conscious Admissions Program

In a long-awaited decision, the Supreme Court recently furnished a victory for affirmative action admissions programs. The 4-3 decision in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, written by Justice Kennedy, declared that the...more

7/5/2016 - Affirmative Action College Admissions Diversity Fisher v University of Texas Race Discrimination SCOTUS Strict Scrutiny Standard Universities University of Texas

Important Changes in Employment Laws in New York State

The State of New York recently adopted two important changes in the law which will impact all employers. Minimum Wage - First, the Legislature approved increases to the minimum wage. While the Federal minimum wage...more

4/8/2016 - FMLA Minimum Wage New Legislation Paid Leave Wage and Hour

Licensed Financial Advisors Found to be Exempt from Overtime Laws by California Federal District Court

Financial institutions are often called upon to wrestle with the classification of employees as “non-exempt” (covered by overtime laws) and “exempt” (not covered by overtime laws). Licensed financial advisors and “registered...more

2/25/2016 - DOL Exempt-Employees Financial Adviser Financial Institutions FLSA Minimum Salary Unpaid Overtime Wage and Hour Wells Fargo White-Collar Exemptions

Seattle Becomes First City in U.S. to Allow Uber Drivers to Unionize

In December, 2015, the Seattle City Council unanimously voted in favor of legislation that expressly permits drivers for Uber, Lyft and other ride-hailing services to unionize. Drivers for these companies, who are treated as...more

1/12/2016 - Collective Bargaining Independent Contractors Lyft NLRA Preemption Sharing Economy Uber Unions

NRLB to Reconsider Unionization of Private College Graduate Students

Last month, the National Labor Relations Board (“NRLB”) voted 3 to 1 to reconsider whether graduate students who work as teaching assistants or research assistants at private universities are protected by the National Labor...more

11/25/2015 - Collective Bargaining Graduate Students NLRA NLRB Universities

U.S. Supreme Court Reinstates Rule that Mortgage Loan Officers Are Not Exempt From Overtime Laws

On March 9, 2015, the United States Supreme Court decided an important case for financial institutions concerning the treatment of Mortgage Loan Officers ("MLO's") under the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA"). The general rule...more

3/12/2015 - Administrative Procedure Act DOL FLSA Mortgage Loan Officer Notice and Comment Paralyzed Veterans Doctrine Perez v Mortage Bankers Assoc Popular Rulemaking Process SCOTUS Statutory Interpretation Wage and Hour

Changes Come to Wage and Hour Law of New York State

Two laws passed by the New York State Legislature have changed certain provisions in the State’s wage and hour laws. First, carrying out the provisions of a law passed some time ago, New York’s minimum wage is...more

12/31/2014 - Employer Mandates Minimum Wage New Legislation Wage and Hour Wage Theft

The Supreme Court’s Decision in Harris v. Quinn May Change the Landscape of Labor Unions in America

On June 30, 2014, in the matter of Harris v. Quinn, the Supreme Court issued a 5-4 decision holding that the First Amendment prohibits the collection of an agency fee from home health care providers who do not wish to join or...more

7/21/2014 - Harris v Quinn Healthcare Home Health Care PLRA SCOTUS Unions

Employers Sick Over New Paid Sick Day Laws: The Epidemic is Spreading

Newark is the latest city to enact a mandatory Paid Sick Leave law, joining Jersey City and New York City. These laws will be impacting employers long after the latest bug goes around the workplace....more

7/11/2014 - Employee Rights Employer Liability Issues New Legislation Paid Leave Sick Leave

Employment Litigation In Review #7

ODEP Develops Database with 3,000 Ready-for-Hire Candidates Who Have Disabilities - On December 5, 2012, the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) announced its new Workforce Recruitment Program. The program...more

9/9/2013 - Affirmative Action Attorney-Client Privilege Banks Confidential Communications Disability DOL FLSA Misclassification

Mortgage Loan Officers Are Exempt From Wage And Hour Laws Again--For Now

The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals has vacated the U.S. Department of Labor’s 2010 guidance that stated that most mortgage loan officers are not exempt from minimum wage and overtime compensation under the Fair Labor Standards...more

7/16/2013 - DOL FLSA Mortgage Loan Originators Unpaid Overtime Wage and Hour

Federal Court Finds That Veganism May Constitute A Religious Belief

The flu season has started out strong this year, already reaching epidemic proportions. A public health emergency has been declared in Boston as flu cases skyrocket to levels 10 times higher than the 2011-2012 season. A mere...more

1/23/2013 - Chenzira Discrimination Reasonable Accommodation Religious Discrimination Vaccinations Veganism

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