Conflict of Laws Labor & Employment

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Federal Law Preempts State Wage Law in Employee Misclassification Case

A Massachusetts Superior Court recently ruled against a group of truck drivers who claimed that a delivery company violated the Massachusetts Wage Act by misclassifying the drivers as independent contractors rather than as...more

There’s More Enforcement Overlap Between Federal OSHA and State Plans Than You Think

One of the fascinating things about an OSHA citation defense practice is the distinctions you see in prosecution by Federal OSHA versus state plans. It is very unusual in the legal world to have the same laws enforced by...more

Supreme Court Update: Mullenix V. Luna (14-1143) And Order List

Was it Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr or Jon Bon Jovi who remarked, "The more things change, the more they stay the same"? (They both did!) Over the last few terms, we've encountered a few steady themes in the Supreme Court's...more

House Passes Transportation Bill with Meal and Rest Break Implications

On November 5, 2015, the House of Representatives approved a transportation funding bill with an amendment that would reverse a 2014 Ninth Circuit decision that California's meal and rest break laws are not preempted under...more

Ninth Circuit Affirms Iskanian Ruling Rendering PAGA Waivers Illegal

In Sakkab v. Luxottica Retail North America, Inc., the Ninth Circuit affirmed the California Supreme Court’s Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC decision (originally summarized in our June 2012 issue), which held...more

Judge Stops St. Louis Minimum Wage Increase Due to State Law

Judge Steven Ohmer of the St. Louis Circuit Court on Wednesday stopped the city's planned minimum wage increase from taking effect because it violates state law. As such, the minimum wage rate in St. Louis and in all of...more

St. Louis Minimum Wage Hike Struck Down at the 11th Hour

Hours before a St. Louis ordinance increasing the city’s minimum wage was set to take effect, St. Louis Circuit Court Judge Steven Ohmer struck down the ordinance. The ordinance, which was passed on August 28, with an...more

Seventh Circuit Rules ERISA Does Not Preempt State Law Prohibiting Discretionary Clauses

In Fontaine v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., No. 14-1984, 2015 U.S. App. (7th Cir. Sept. 4, 2015), the Seventh Circuit affirmed a U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois decision holding that Illinois’s...more

Employment News Alert: Two Key Employer Victories

AB 465 was vetoed. This bill sought to bar mandatory employment arbitration agreements. This would have caused lawsuits to increase and would have driven up litigation costs for California’s employers. In vetoing AB 465,...more

Invalidation of Georgia Garnishment Statute – Now What?

On September 8, 2015, a federal district court invalidated a portion of the Georgia post-judgment garnishment statute in Strickland v. Alexander, No. 1:12-CV-02735-MHS (N.D. Ga.). Senior Judge Marvin Shoob found that the...more

Justices Take On Another California Rule – When an Arbitration Agreement Is Too Flawed to Enforce

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to review whether the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) preempts a California state court rule on unconscionable provisions that is purportedly applied more stringently to arbitration agreements...more

PAGA In The News – Ninth Circuit Sides with California Supreme Court On Enforcement of PAGA Waivers and California Amends The...

The Ninth Circuit Decision - Delivering a perhaps unexpected blow to employers, the Ninth Circuit sided with the California Supreme Court earlier this week in upholding the state-court-fashioned Iskanian rule, which...more

Down The Arbitration Rabbit Hole: Ninth Circuit Refuses To Enforce Employee’s Waiver Of PAGA Claims

On September 28, 2015, the Ninth Circuit held in Shukri Sakkab v. Luxottica Retail North America, Inc. that the FAA does not preempt the rule that the California Supreme Court enunciated in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation that...more

Not all Plans can Establish a Shortened Limitations Period for Filing Lawsuit

I recently blogged about a case in which a plan had established a shorter period of time (one year deadline) for filing a lawsuit, rather than relying on the state statute of limitation (six years) which would otherwise have...more

Ninth Circuit Blesses Iskanian

On September 28, 2015, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a 2-1 decision in the long-awaited case of Sakkab v. Luxottica Retail North America, Inc. (No. 13-55184, D.C. No. 3:12-cv-00436-GPC-KSC) (“Sakkab”). The Court...more

State Employment Laws That Every Virginia Employer Should Know

Keeping track of the latest changes to federal employment laws, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), to name just a few, is hard...more

Can You Terminate An Employee For Acting In Self-Defense? Maybe Not.

The case, Ray v. Wal-Mart Stores, involved two incidents at two different Utah Wal-Mart stores and five former employees. Under Wal-Mart policy, employees are required to “disengage” from an individual with a weapon or who...more

Airline Industry Alert: Court Finds Airline Deregulation Act Does Not Preempt Miami-Dade County's Living Wage Ordinance

On September 21, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit held that the Airline Deregulation Act (ADA) does not preempt Miami-Dade County's Living Wage Ordinance (LWO). Amerijet Int'l, Inc. v. Miami-Dade...more

Second Circuit Allows Whistleblower Retaliation Protection Without Reporting to SEC

September 10, 2015, in a 2-1 decision in Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy LLC, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that whistleblowers who report securities law violations internally but not to the US Securities and...more

Don't Forget State Law: Why Busk Does Not Save All Retailers

Expansion is the lifeblood of a growing business. But with expansion comes a diverse landscape of state laws governing all aspects of the employment relationship. It is vital when entering new jurisdictions to understand the...more

Officers And The Internal Affairs Doctrine

My guess is that most attorneys would say that the duty of an officer to the corporation are governed by the law of the state of incorporation under the “internal affairs doctrine”.  As explained by the U.S. Supreme Court,...more

Airline Industry Alert: Court Finds Federal Law Preempts State Drug-Testing Law as Applied to Flight Attendant

In a decision that is good news for airline employers, a federal trial court in Minnesota has held that the state drug-testing statute, which prohibits discharging an employee the first time the employee fails a drug test, is...more

State Law Claim for Invasion of Privacy Escapes ERISA Preemption: Rose v. HealthComp, Inc.

A federal court recently held that the plaintiff’s claims under state law survived ERISA preemption, and remanded the case to state court to determine the plaintiff’s claims for invasion of privacy and unfair business...more

California Enacts Change-in-Control Benefits For Grocery Workers

Last week, Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 359 (Gonzalez) that will impose a worker retention requirement when there has been a change in ownership or control of grocery establishments.  In general, the bill will require the...more

Airline Industry Alert: Washington State Supreme Court Finds SeaTac Ordinance Increasing Minimum Wage to $15 an Hour Enforceable...

In a 5-4 decision, the Washington State Supreme Court has held that Proposition 1 – an ordinance which increased the minimum wage within the city of SeaTac for employees in the hospitality and transportation industries to $15...more

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