Labor & Employment Conflict of Laws

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Attorney General Madigan Finds “Right to Work Zones” Preempted by Federal Law

Last Friday, Attorney General Lisa Madigan issued an opinion finding that Illinois counties, municipalities, and other local governments cannot pass local “right to work” ordinances because they are preempted by the National...more

Sick Leave Trend Continues in New Jersey, Constitutional Challenge Begins

This week Bloomfield became the ninth locality in the State of New Jersey to require employers to provide sick leave to their employees, joining Jersey City, Newark, Passaic, East Orange, Paterson, Irvington, Trenton, and...more

“State Of The Union” On Substance Abuse And The Workplace

Where are we these days with respect to mind-altering substances and the workplace? Here’s the latest, with the “substances” discussed in alphabetical order. This blog post is guaranteed accurate™ for at least the next five...more

Employment Law Commentary - Volume 27, Issue 2: Where There’s Smoke, Should There Be Fire? An Analysis Of Employer Termination...

With the recent increase in the number of states that have “legalized” or decriminalized some form of marijuana use, more and more employers have asked themselves whether it continues to be permissible to terminate employees...more

Court Holds That Physician’s State Law Claim For Disability Benefits Is Preempted by ERISA: Hershan v. Unum Group Corporation

A federal court has held that a radiologist’s state law contract claim for certain disability insurance benefits arose under a welfare benefit plan governed by ERISA and was therefore preempted by ERISA. In Hershan v. Unum...more

Is your confidential information “property” if it does not qualify as a trade secret?

The answer likely is “no” according to a recent decision from a federal court in San Francisco. The plaintiff in that case, a data storage company, alleged that a competitor misappropriated its trade secrets by illegally...more

The Interconnect Flash - No. 46: Court Deals Crushing Blow to Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law

On February 5, 2015, Judge Robert G. Stearns issued industry-favorable decisions in two worker classification suits pending in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts. Based upon the First Circuit...more

UPDATE: SCOTUS Denies Petition For Cert In Iskanian

On June 24, 2014, the California Supreme Court issued a controversial decision in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC. While the Court in Iskanian confirmed that an express class action waiver in an employment...more

Ex-Husband Fails in Attempt to Use Texas Law to Impose Constructive Trust on Former Spouse’s Survivor Annuity

A former husband’s attempt to use Texas law to deprive his first wife of a survivor annuity under his pension plan has been firmly rejected by the U. S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. Vanderkam v. Vanderkam,...more

PAGA Representative Claims Remain Alive After SCOTUS Denies Iskanian Review

Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States declined review of a state supreme court case that has sparked widespread flux in the landscape of class action arbitration waivers in California. In Iskanian v. CLS...more

Did You Know…SCOTUS Will Decide Gay Marriage Issue Once and For All

It was bound to happen.  Sooner or later the U.S. Supreme Court would be put to the task of deciding whether a married couple from California are still married while visiting Elvis’ ghost at Graceland, in Tennessee....more

Ninth Circuit Finds State Trespass and Nuisance Laws Not Preempted by Secondary Boycott Law

In a recent decision involving the interplay between California law and federal labor law, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that state trespass and nuisance laws are not preempted by the federal secondary...more

One 60-Day IRA Rollover Per Year Is The Final Answer

Although the Internal Revenue Code trumps IRS Publications, practitioners tend to use the Publications as the initial resource when handling day-to-day tax issues. However, the Publications were not part of petitioner’s...more

Multiple PAGA Representative Claims Crumble As Federal Courts Continue To Reject Iskanian and Enforce Arbitration Agreements...

When the California Supreme Court decided Iskanian v. CLS Transp. Los Angeles, LLC, 59 Cal. 4th 348 (2014), this June, some legal commentators assumed that employees could not waive pre-litigation claims under the Private...more

Guns In The Workplace Versus Employer’s Property Rights

There is a growing trend of state laws prohibiting employers from banning firearms on employers’ property. These laws are otherwise known as “parking lot laws.” At the state level, more and more states appear prepared to...more

OSHA’s New Reporting Requirements Will Not Apply In Kentucky

In September, we told you that the U.S. Department of Labor had published its final rule amending the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) reporting and recordkeeping regulations. The new rule...more

Arizona Supreme Court Holds the Arizona Uniform Trade Secrets Act Does Not Preempt Tort Claims Based on Misappropriation of...

On November 19, 2014, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled in Orca Communications Unlimited, LLC v. Noder that the Arizona Uniform Trade Secrets Act (AUTSA) does not preempt common law tort claims for misappropriation of...more

FAQs About the New Jersey Opportunity to Compete Act (aka New Jersey’s “Ban the Box” Law)

New Jersey’s Opportunity to Compete Act (also known informally as the New Jersey “ban the box” law), N.J.S.A. 34:6B-11 et seq., goes into effect on March 1, 2015. The new law restricts most employers’ ability to request...more

Continuing to Withstand Attack: Indiana Supreme Court Unanimously Upholds Indiana’s Right to Work Law

Last month, the Indiana Supreme Court unanimously upheld the Indiana Right to Work Law, rejecting a union’s claim that the state statute violates the Indiana Constitution. The Indiana Supreme Court’s decision comes roughly...more

Employer's "Super Policy" Against Harassment Requires Employer to Protect Employee Beyond That Which is Required by Law

A Costco employee suffered from Tourette's syndrome, and made complaints to management about the way his supervisors and others were treating him. He later filed charges with the Connecticut Human Rights Organization as well...more

The Approval of Recreational Marijuana Use May Change Workplace Drug Policies

Efforts to legalize marijuana secured major victories last Election Day when voters in Oregon, Alaska and Washington, D.C. approved laws allowing for the recreational use of a plant previously touted as the "evil weed" by the...more

SOX Squelches Arbitration of Entangled Claim

In Laubenstein v. Conair Corp., No. 5:14-cv-05227 (W.D. Ark. Nov. 19, 2014), Plaintiff claimed retaliation under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (“SOX”) and a state-law claim for wrongful termination. A recent amendment to SOX...more

Caught Between Laws: Challenges for Health Care Providers in Using Criminal History Information in Employment Decisions

In an effort to increase protection for vulnerable patient populations, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) creates incentives for states to strengthen the employment background check programs available to long-term care providers....more

Arizona Trade Secrets Grow New Teeth

Over the last 18 months, the courts had diluted Arizona trade secret protections, notwithstanding the recent criminalization of trade secret theft by the AZ legislature. Today, however, the Arizona Supreme Court breathed new...more

Agencies Beware: Supreme Court Leans Toward Air Marshal Whistleblower in Oral Argument

On November 4, 2014, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Dep’t of Homeland Security v. MacLean, bringing closer to an end the lengthy dispute between Robert MacLean and his former employer, the Transportation Security...more

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