Fisher & Phillips LLP

Looking Over Your Employees' Shoulders

As shifting privacy lines allow employers to reach further and further into employee conduct, it’s increasingly important that you know the legal limits. Many employees will question the legality of increased employer monitoring…more

Corporate Counsel, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Policies, GPS, Illegal Conduct

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Ignorance Is Not Bliss In The Joint-Employment Context

Hospitals, residential-care facilities, home-health agencies, and other employers in the healthcare industry often subcontract labor through outside vendors to fill positions like travel nurses, security guards, and janitors…more

Employer Liability Issues, Health Care Providers, Hospitals, Joint Employers, Subcontracts

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Massachusetts Attorney General Revises "Safe Harbor" Provision to Address Part-Time Employees and Publishes Notice Poster

On June 10, 2015, the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office published a revised Safe Harbor provision concerning the Earned Sick Time Law that made significant changes to the Safe Harbor provision previously issued on May 18…more

Employee Rights, Employment Policies, Notice Requirements, Part-Time Employees, PTO

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Hospitality Update, No. 3, September 2013: Put It On My Card? Not So Fast!

In the age of technology and convenience, some businesses, particularly those with multi-state operations, are turning away from issuing paychecks to employees or paying them by direct deposit. Instead, some are opting to pay…more

Debit Cards, Hospitality Industry, Minimum Wage, Payroll Cards, Wages

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Approved San Francisco Retail Workers Ordinance Means More Restrictions For Employers

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors has voted unanimously to approve a city ordinance, which will create a number of obstacles for many businesses – including retail stores, restaurants, and banks. The ordinance, referred to…more

Banks, Employer Liability Issues, Local Ordinance, Restaurant Industry, Retailers

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Update For Retirement Plans Post-Windsor

Now that some of the dust has settled on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in U.S. v. Windsor, employers who haven’t done so already should take immediate steps to review their retirement plan documents and administrative…more

Employee Benefits, ERISA, IRS, Retirement, Retirement Plan

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Oregon's Minimum Wage Now $2.00 Per Hour Higher Than Federal Rate

After a January 1st increase of 15 cents per hour, Oregon’s minimum wage now stands at $9.25 – exactly two dollars per hour more than the federal minimum wage rate of $7.25 per hour. That places Oregon near the top of the list…more

Minimum Wage, New Legislation

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50 Shades Of Grey… In The Boardroom

As the weather heats up, summertime romances are probably on the minds of many of your employees. According to the Society of Human Resource Management, as many as 40% of workers have had an office relationship at some point in…more

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Missouri Minimum Wage to Increase to $7.65 Per Hour Effective January 1, 2015

On January 1, 2015, the Missouri minimum wage will increase from $7.50 to $7.65 per hour and from $3.75 to $3.825 per hour for tipped employees. Compensation for tipped employees must total at least $7.65 per hour when tips are…more

Minimum Wage, New Legislation, Restaurant Industry, Retailers, Tips

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Beware Of The One-Two Punch Expected In The Fair Housing Law Arena

The combination of a recent unfavorable Supreme Court decision along with dramatically increased federal funding for fair housing enforcement could spell bad news. Businesses that operate in the housing industry and those…more

Affordable Housing, Banking Sector, Discrimination, Disparate Impact, Fair Housing Act

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Countdown To July 1st: Preparing For California's Mandatory Paid Sick Leave

Beginning July 1, 2015, California employers, with limited exceptions, must grant every employee 24 hours or three paid sick days each year. Even employers who are already providing paid sick leave face potential liability for…more

Best Management Practices, Corporate Counsel, Employer Mandates, Paid Leave, Recordkeeping Requirements

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Washington Supreme Court Extends Minimum Wage

In a narrow 5-4 decision on August 20, 2015, the Washington Supreme Court reversed a lower court ruling and applied the City of SeaTac’s $15 minimum wage law to all workers at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport…more

Airlines, Airports, Hospitality Industry, Jurisdiction, Local Ordinance

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Hospitals Are Still In The OFCCP's Crosshairs

On February 12, 2015, U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) underscored its intent to continue to scrutinize hospitals, including nonprofit hospitals. The OFCCP found that Lahey Clinic…more

Discrimination, Employer Liability Issues, Healthcare, Hospitals, OFCCP

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NLRB Starts Down The Slippery Slope With Controversial New Joint Employer Ruling

In a 3-2 decision, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced yesterday a broad new standard for determining whether two businesses are “joint employers” for purposes of collective bargaining. Browning-Ferris Industries…more

Browning-Ferris Industries of California Inc., Collective Bargaining, Employer Liability Issues, Franchises, Joint Employers

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If You Can't Fire A Teacher For Criticizing Management, Who Can You Fire?

Most school administrators would be shocked to learn that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) could, in some circumstances, find that their school engaged in an unfair labor practice for disciplining or terminating an…more

ALJ, Discipline, Hiring & Firing, NLRA, NLRB

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What's the One Thing Every Company's Telecommuting Policy Must Include?

If, under certain circumstances, employers are required to accomodate remote work, what essential elements should be included in any company's Telecommuting Plan?…more

ADA, Hiring & Firing, Legal Perspectives, Reasonable Accommodation, Telecommuting

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Supreme Court Rules In Favor Of Religious Beliefs Of Business Owner

Yesterday, a divided U.S. Supreme Court held in a 5-4 decision that closely-held for-profit corporations providing group healthcare to their employees could, on religious grounds, be exempted from providing contraception…more

Affordable Care Act, Burwell v Hobby Lobby, Contraceptive Coverage Mandate, Contraceptives, Hobby Lobby

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Are Your Contractors Actually Employees? DOL Says Probably Yes

Last month, the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) issued an Administrator's Interpretation aimed at addressing what it characterizes as the “problematic trend” of employers misclassifying workers as independent contractors rather…more

Administrative Interpretation, Affordable Care Act, Best Practices, DOL, Economic Realities Test

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Connecticut Governor Vetoes Non-Compete Bill

Last month, the Connecticut state legislature passed a bill that would have regulated the use of noncompete agreements…more

Dannel Malloy, Legislative Vetoes, Non-Compete Agreements, Restrictive Covenants

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Who's On Your Campus? Have You Checked The Sex-Offender List Lately?

An administrator’s nightmare is receiving a phone call that an individual on the sex offender’s list has harmed a child within the school. To avoid this horrible situation, schools now regularly check the criminal backgrounds…more

Criminal Background Checks, Employer Liability Issues, Hiring & Firing, Public Schools, Sex Offender Registry

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Employee or Independent Contractor: Why It Matters?

Every employer eventually tackles the question of whether its labor force is composed of employees, independent contractors, or a combination of both. The appeal of the independent contractor classification is understandable…more

Employer Liability Issues, Independent Contractors, Misclassification, Wage and Hour

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Should You Have Job Descriptions? (Hint: Yes)

No state or federal law “requires” job descriptions. But job descriptions can be helpful tools for both practical and legal reasons. Here are some of the most important..…more

Best Management Practices, Employer Liability Issues, Job Descriptions

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One-Time Anomaly Or Potential Turning Of The Tides? A Review Of The Supreme Court's 2014-2015 Term

In a marked departure from the overwhelming success employers experienced before the Supreme Court in recent years, the less successful recently wrapped 2014-2015 term could be an indication that the judicial tides may be…more

401k, Affordable Care Act, Collective Bargaining, Conciliation, Corporate Counsel

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Colorado Employers Handed Medical Marijuana Victory

On June 15, 2015, the Colorado Supreme Court held in a unanimous decision that employers are still free to prohibit employee marijuana use in their workforces, and can still discipline and terminate employees who test positive…more

CO Supreme Court, Coats v Dish Network, Discipline, Drug Testing, Employment Policies

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Evaluating USDOL's Proposals: Avoid Dangerous Assumptions

Employers are of course continuing to evaluate the impact of the U.S. Labor Department's proposed increase in the minimum dollar amount for the federal Fair Labor Standards Act's Section 13(a)(1) exemptions' salary requirement…more

DOL, Exempt-Employees, FLSA, Minimum Salary, Unpaid Overtime

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Traditional Contract Rules Determine Whether Retirees Are Entitled to Lifetime Healthcare Benefits

Yesterday, in a unanimous decision, the U.S. Supreme Court held that courts must apply ordinary rules of contract interpretation when determining whether retiree healthcare benefits vest for life pursuant to the terms of a…more

CBAs, Collective Bargaining, Contract Interpretation, Corporate Counsel, Employer Contributions

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Florida Minimum Wage Rising To $8.05

On January 1, 2015, the minimum wage for employees working in Florida rises to $8.05 per hour. This represents an hourly increase of $0.12 over the current Florida minimum wage. The increase is tied to the rate of inflation over…more

Employer Liability Issues, FLSA, Minimum Wage, New Legislation, Wage and Hour

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Employment Law in Colombia: Part III

This article is the third in a series which provides an overview of the basics of employment law in Colombia and will focus on laws governing employment terminations, including just cause reasons for terminating the employment…more

Breach of Contract, Columbia, Compliance, Confidentiality Agreements, Employment Contract

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Ninth Circuit Holds Service Advisors Non-Exempt Under FLSA Dealership "Salesman" Exemption; Section 7(i) Exemption Is Still Available

The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (with jurisdiction over the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington) has ruled in Navarro v. Encino Motorcars, LLC that Service…more

Automotive Industry, Car Dealerships, Exempt-Employees, FLSA, Trucking Industry

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Bullying Can Cost Your School – And Your Students, And Their Parents

School bullying is one of the most pressing social, health, and educational concerns facing public and private schools alike. Long-term bullying, left unaddressed by schools or parents, can cause lasting physical and emotional…more

Bullying, Cyberbullying, Faculty, Legislative Agendas, Liability

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Look Out Below

How Subs Can Cause Problems For General Contractors - The U.S. Labor Department (DOL) often sets its sights up the food chain, focusing enforcement efforts on general contractors (GCs) for the wage violations of their…more

Construction Industry, DOL, Employer Liability Issues, FLSA, General Contractors

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Multiemployer Pension Reform

Too Little, Too Late? - Employers and unions locked into failing multiemployer pension plans received an 11th-hour reprieve in late December when Congress passed legislation revising laws that had hobbled these plans for…more

Employee Benefits, Multiemployer Plan, PBGC, Pension Reform, Pensions

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OSHA Announces Final Rule On Recording Requirements

On September 11, 2014, OSHA released its final rule for Occupational Injury and Illness Recording and Reporting Requirements. The rule, which takes effect on January 1, 2015, makes two important changes that tighten OSHA’s…more

Bodily Injury, Compliance, Employer Liability Issues, OSHA, Recording Requirements

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How's Your ESI Score?

No question that customer satisfaction is a primary goal and focus for dealerships (and manufacturers). In a highly-competitive industry where products and prices can be virtually identical, dealerships understand that customer…more

Auto Manufacturers, Best Management Practices, Car Dealerships, Employee Retention

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Tips To Prepare Your Company For An I-9 Audit

The Immigration Customs and Enforcement division (ICE) of the Department of Homeland Security, continues to issue Form I-9 Notices of Inspection to businesses across the nation. In fiscal year 2012, ICE served over 3,000 Notices…more

Audits, DHS, Employer Mandates, I-9, ICE

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Labor Letter, August 2013: NLRB Taking Close Look At Photography Policies

In February of 2009, a Wisconsin medical center fired several nurses after they electronically posted patient x-rays to their Facebook page, revealing the presence of a potentially embarrassing foreign object. As a result, the…more

Facebook, FBI, HIPAA, NLRB, Photographs

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Electronic Devices At School: What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

The reality of life for most employees is that most of them cannot make it through an hour, much less a full school or business day, without checking their smartphones, tablet computers, laptops, and other electronic devices…more

Popular

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Work A Full Eight Hours? That's Not In My Job Description!

According to the EEOC, healthcare employers are disproportionately represented in the ranks of those sued for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Baptist Health South Florida, Inc. recently became one of…more

ADA, Disability, Disability Discrimination, EEOC, Healthcare Professionals

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Labor Letter - April 2013: Curbing Abuse Of "Intermittent" FMLA Leave

The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows employees to take 12 weeks of leave for their own or a family member’s serious health condition and up to 26 weeks for military caregiver leave. The leave can be taken in one block,…more

FMLA, FMLA Abuse, FMLA Certification Forms, Medical Leave

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Be Careful What You Say: Allegations Of Worker Misconduct Might Be Defamation

Healthcare institutions have a moral and legal obligation to promote patient safety as an essential component of patient care. Supervisors and managers must be supportive of their staffs while remaining vigilant about the…more

ALJ, Defamation, Employer Liability Issues, Health Care Providers, Hiring & Firing

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Massachusetts Attorney General Publishes Final Earned Sick Time Regulations

On June 19, 2015, the Massachusetts Attorney General published the final regulations concerning the new Earned Sick Time (“EST”) law that will go into effect on July 1, 2015. These final regulations differ somewhat from the…more

Earned Sick Time, Employee Rights, Employer Mandates, Final Rules, FMLA

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When Employees Solve Problems With Their Fists

Generally speaking, human resources professionals and business executives have become quite adept at dealing with employee claims for illegal harassment. For example, just about any HR manager can provide a definition of a…more

Assault, Battery, Corporate Counsel, Harassment, Hostile Environment

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Housing Discrimination Claims Given Boost By Supreme Court

Today, by a 5-4 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the federal Fair Housing Act (FHA) encompasses claims of disparate-impact discrimination. This decision, which marks the first time that the Supreme Court addressed this…more

ADEA, Affordable Housing, Discrimination, Disparate Impact, FHA

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Summer Hires

This summer it’s expected that temporary workers will fill roughly 10,000 summer jobs, many of which will be in the hospitality industry. Before filling any of your seasonal positions, it’s worth reviewing a few cautionary…more

E-Verify, Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, FLSA, I-9

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Nigeria: Part II

This article is the second in a series which provides an overview of the basics of employment law in Nigeria and will focus on laws governing employment terminations, including wage and hour, termination, restrictive covenants,…more

At-Will Employment, Breach of Contract, Dispute Resolution, Hiring & Firing, Minimum Salary

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Illinois Embraces "Ban The Box"

On July 19, 2014, Illinois joined a growing number of states prohibiting employers from asking about applicants’ criminal histories early in the hiring process…more

Ban the Box, Criminal Background Checks, Job Applicants

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ERISA Fiduciaries Must Continuously Monitor 401(k) Investment Choices

The U.S. Supreme Court has held unanimously that a plan fiduciary has a continuing duty to monitor investments offered under a 401(k) plan, a duty that is separate and apart from the duty to exercise prudence in selecting…more

401k, Benefit Plan Sponsors, Corporate Counsel, ERISA, Fiduciary Duty

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California Wage/Hour Update No. 3, July 2013: Appellate Court Attacks Piece-Rate Compensation – Again

The piece-rate compensation system, common among automotive technicians, agricultural workers, manufacturing employees, truck drivers, and others, has been a viable and rewarding form of compensation in California for over a…more

Compensation & Benefits, Compliance, Employee Benefits, Piece-Rate Pay, Rest and Meal Break

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New OSHA Directive to Assist in Early Resolution of Whistleblower Complaints

On August 19, 2015, OSHA issued new policies and procedures (Compliance Directive: CPL 02-03-006) for applying a new process for resolving whistleblower disputes. This directive is OSHA’s attempt to institute an early resolution…more

Administrative Hearings, Mediation, OSHA, Settlement Negotiations, Subject Matter Experts

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Colorado's Minimum Wage Increased January 1

The Colorado minimum wage increased by 23 cents to $8.23 per hour on January 1, 2015. Tipped employees are entitled to receive at least $5.21 per hour. These increases to Colorado’s minimum wage rates reflect the annual…more

COLA, Employer Mandates, Minimum Wage

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Massachusetts Attorney General Revises "Safe Harbor" Provision to Address Part-Time Employees and Publishes Notice Poster

On June 10, 2015, the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office published a revised Safe Harbor provision concerning the Earned Sick Time Law that made significant changes to the Safe Harbor provision previously issued on May 18…more

Employee Rights, Employment Policies, Notice Requirements, Part-Time Employees, PTO

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Can You Link Insurance Premiums To Smoking?

Rocked by soaring costs, including skyrocketing increases in health insurance premiums, employers are desperate to manage, and hopefully limit, whatever costs they can. Many employers have begun to look to the lifestyle choices…more

ADA, Health Insurance, HIPAA, Premiums

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Was This Doctor A "Good Fit"?

A Wisconsin hospital scored an important victory in a recent failure-to-hire case involving an allegation of race discrimination. The underlying facts offer a timely reminder to all healthcare employers about what is necessary…more

Best Practices, Defense Strategies, Health Care Providers, Hiring & Firing, Hospitals

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Electronic Devices At School: What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

The reality of life for most employees is that most of them cannot make it through an hour, much less a full school or business day, without checking their smartphones, tablet computers, laptops, and other electronic devices…more

Popular

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Limiting Off-Duty Access To The Hotel

Many hospitality employers are surprised to learn that employees have a right under federal labor law to access the exterior, nonworking areas of the hotel property in their off-duty hours for union or other protected concerted…more

Employee Handbooks, Employer Liability Issues, Hospitality Industry, Hotels, Protected Concerted Activity

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California Supreme Court: "Illegal Immigrant Shouldn't Have Been Hired – But Can't Be Fired Illegally"

On June 26, 2014, the California Supreme Court decided that an employee may proceed with a discrimination lawsuit even though he presented false work authorization documents to obtain employment in the first place…more

After-Acquired Evidence, Discrimination, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Authorization Document, Hiring & Firing

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Is Your Health Plan HIPAA Compliant?

Data breaches with respect to medical information are on the rise, given that such information is generally more valuable on the black market than stolen credit card data. The 2015 breach of healthcare company Anthem, Inc.,…more

Anthem Insurance, Benefit Plan Sponsors, Business Associates, Covered Entities, Data Breach

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Cook County's New Wage-Theft Ordinance

Cook County recently increased the stakes on wage and hour compliance for employers that transact business with or receive tax incentives from the County. After May 1, 2015, Cook County may refuse to allow businesses to operate…more

FLSA, Misclassification, Wage and Hour, Wage Theft Prevention Act, Wages

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New Jersey Minimum Wage Increases To $8.38 Per Hour

Beginning January 1, 2015, the minimum wage in New Jersey is $8.38 per hour, up from $8.25 per hour. This pay hike is the result of the November 2013 voter-approved state constitutional amendment that requires that New Jersey’s…more

Employer Mandates, Minimum Wage

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Trade Secret Legislation Reintroduced in Congress (3rd Time)

Maybe the third time is the charm. After trying twice before, Congress is making another run at creating a federal claim for trade secret misappropriation. A bipartisan group of legislators from both congressional chambers,…more

3M Company, Attorney's Fees, Boeing, Boston Scientific, Chamber of Commerce

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The EEOC Goes Electronic: FAQs On EEOC's New Electronic Pilot Program

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently rolled out a pilot program to electronically notify employers of new Charges filed against them. Instead of mailing the Notice of Charge of Discrimination form through…more

ACT Digital, Discrimination, EEOC, Electronic Communications, Employer Liability Issues

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Medical Device Industry Remains a Hotbed for NonCompete Litigation

A recent opinion stemming from a lawsuit between two competitors in the medical device industry reminds us of the old adage “be careful what you wish for.” In Howmedica Osteonics Corp. v. Zimmer, Inc., the plaintiff seemed to…more

Bonds, Medical Devices, Non-Compete Agreements, Preliminary Injunctions, Restrictive Covenants

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SCOTUS Extends Same-Sex Marriage Rights Nationwide

As has become its custom, the Supreme Court left one of its most high-profile decisions for the end of its term, holding by a 5-4 vote that the Constitution requires states to recognize same-sex marriages. As a result, state…more

Employee Benefits, FMLA, Fourth Amendment, Marriage, Marriage Equality

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Don't Fall Into The Gap: Wage/Hour Lawsuit Highlights Risks For Employers

In August, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit affirmed dismissal of five purported class or collective actions brought against a number of healthcare systems and their affiliates. Although favorable for the…more

Compliance, Employer Liability Issues, Wage and Hour, Wages

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You’re Not the Boss of Me – The NLRB May Disagree

With a few key strokes, the NLRB yesterday, in a 3-2 decision down party lines, wiped away years of precedent and re-wrote, or, in its words “refined,” the definition of a joint employer. In a ruling that will, if upheld through…more

Browning-Ferris Industries of California Inc., CBAs, Collective Bargaining, Franchises, Joint Employers

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Swatting Gnats

Since the early 2000s, the buzzing gnats of employment litigation involving retailers have been individual Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) lawsuits. Whether brought for unpaid overtime, working through lunches, or working off…more

ADA, FLSA, Public Accommodation, Retailers, Title III

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Federal Court Dismissal of EEOC Suit Leaves Employers Hanging

In a closely watched ruling, an Illinois federal district court handed a victory to one particular employer, but ducked a broader ruling that would have provided general guidance to companies generally that are trying to avoid…more

Corporate Counsel, Covenant Not to Sue, CVS, Dismissals, EEOC

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Impact of EEOC v. Abercrombie, and Employment Practices Going Forward

A first glance at the U.S. Supreme Court's recent EEOC v Abercrombie decision by Fisher & Phillips attorney, Andrew Hoag…more

EEOC, EEOC v Abercrombie, First Glance, Religious Accommodation, Religious Discrimination

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Labor Letter, June 2013: Becoming A Resume Lie Detector

Society of Human Resource Management studies show that 53% of job applicants lie on their resumes. Other research has placed the number at between 30% and 50%, with one 2011 study saying that 80% of resumes are – at a minimum –…more

Applications, Hiring & Firing, Job Applicants, Misleading Impressions, Misleading Statements

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Hospitality Update, No. 4, December 2012: Let Me Take A Look At That Tattoo

There is no question that tattoos, body piercings, and other forms of self-expression have become commonplace in modern society, especially among the Gen X and Gen Y demographic. As a result, employers have to deal with these…more

Appearance Policy, Resorts & Restaurants, Title VII

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Oregon's New Paid Sick Leave Law: An Overview

On June 22, 2015, Oregon became the fourth state to enact a statewide mandatory paid sick leave law, following California, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. The bill, signed into law by Governor Kate Brown, requires Oregon…more

Employee Rights, Employer Mandates, New Legislation, Paid Leave, Paid Sick Leave Act

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Impact of the 'Students First' Decision on Non-Teacher Employees of School Districts

Judge Rolf Treu’s decision in the Students First case is effectively an indictment of the termination process of all California public school employees, not just teachers…more

Equal Protection, Public Schools, School Districts, SCOTUS, Seniority

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Service Animals In School

Joey is a 5th grade student who is hearing impaired. Joey’s parents request that he be allowed to attend school with his service dog, Snickers. You learn that Joey’s teacher is severely allergic to animal dander. You are also…more

Assistive Animals, Public Schools, Service Animals

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NLRB Starts Down The Slippery Slope With Controversial New Joint Employer Ruling

In a 3-2 decision, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced yesterday a broad new standard for determining whether two businesses are “joint employers” for purposes of collective bargaining. Browning-Ferris Industries…more

Browning-Ferris Industries of California Inc., Collective Bargaining, Employer Liability Issues, Franchises, Joint Employers

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Ashley Madison - That Electronic Communications Policy Was a Good Idea After All

When does an employee’s extramarital activity become his or her employer’s concern?  Before the Ashley Madison breach, the answer might as well have been “[almost] never.”  Since the Ashley Madison breach has a sufficient…more

Ashley Madison, Data Breach, DHS, Email, Employer Liability Issues

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Is An Unlimited Vacation Policy Right For Your Workplace?

According to a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, about 3% of companies in the U.S. maintain some form of unlimited vacation policy. The reasons for adopting such a policy are easy to see: they offer work­life…more

Best Management Practices, Employment Policies, Human Resources Professionals, Vacation Leave

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Ohio's Minimum Wage Boosted 15 Cents On January 1

Minimum wage workers in Ohio will see their hourly pay increase by 15 cents in 2015. Effective January 1st, the Ohio minimum wage rate increased from $7.95 to $8.10 per hour. The minimum wage rate for tipped employees is…more

COLA, Minimum Wage

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OSHA Announces Final Rule On Recording Requirements

On September 11, 2014, OSHA released its final rule for Occupational Injury and Illness Recording and Reporting Requirements. The rule, which takes effect on January 1, 2015, makes two important changes that tighten OSHA’s…more

Bodily Injury, Compliance, Employer Liability Issues, OSHA, Recording Requirements

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Fifth Circuit Delivers Crippling Blow to Controversial NLRB Class Action Waiver Theory

Arbitration is generally supposed to be faster, cheaper, and more predictable than litigation. Homebuilder D.R. Horton, like many other employers, certainly believed this when, in 2006, it began requiring employees to sign…more

Arbitration Agreements, Class Action, Class Action Arbitration Waivers, Contract Drafting, D.R. Horton v NLRB

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Independent Contractor Misclassification: The Hidden Trap of Outsourcing

It’s a beguiling option. Companies that classify workers as independent contractors receive a number of benefits, including elimination of payroll taxes, workers’ compensation insurance, and unemployment insurance withholdings…more

Class Action, Independent Contractors, Misclassification, Subcontractors, Wage and Hour

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Healthcare Update, No. 4, November 2013: Facebook: The New Water Cooler – Not The New Vegas

As of June 2013, Facebook, the reigning social-media giant, had 1.15 billion monthly active users who spent an average of 8.3 hours a month on Facebook. During roughly the same period of time, Facebook users "liked" a Facebook…more

Discipline, Facebook, Healthcare, Human Resources Professionals, Managers

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The Supreme Court Preserves Key Insurance Subsidy Provisions Of The Affordable Care Act

Today, in an anxiously awaited opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court preserved key provisions of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act (ACA), maintaining insurance subsidies despite a stiff challenge from opponents. By a 6 to 3 vote,…more

Affordable Care Act, Health Insurance, Health Insurance Exchanges, Individual Mandate, King v Burwell

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Would You Drop to the Floor If Shooting Broke Out In Your Workplace?

With depressing regularity, we receive calls asking for guidance in evaluating and responding to potential workplace violence threats. The threats are rarely serious but in this era, one can never ignore concerns. There are no…more

Best Practices, DHS, Risk Management, Training, Workplace Violence

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Top 5 Legal Trends For Hospitality Employers

There is much to be learned from 2013. Below are five legal topics that made headlines last year, and should provide valuable guidance for managing labor and employment law issues in 2014…more

Class Action, Class Action Arbitration Waivers, Employer Liability Issues, FLSA, Free Speech

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Death Threats Lead To Employer's ADA Victory

It is rare that the most employee-friendly of all federal appellate courts cites “common sense” in support of one of its decisions. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals recently did just that, however, dismissing a disability…more

ADA, Appeals, Best Practices, Disability Discrimination, Dismissals

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Preventing A Messy "Failed Exemption" Lawsuit

(Labor Letter, February 2014) - In recent years employers have become all too familiar with lawsuits alleging violations of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). According to the Administrative Office of the United…more

Exempt-Employees, FLSA, Hiring & Firing, Job Offers, Non-Exempt Employees

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Will Your No-Smoking Policy Get Vaporized?

Wondering what your employee is smoking in the break room, likely in violation of your “no-smoking” policy? Chances are it is an electronic smoking device, such as an e-cigarette or vaporizer. What should you do about it?…more

Best Management Practices, Corporate Counsel, E-Cigarettes, Employment Policies, FDA

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NLRB Starts Down The Slippery Slope With Controversial New Joint Employer Ruling

In a 3-2 decision, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced yesterday a broad new standard for determining whether two businesses are “joint employers” for purposes of collective bargaining. Browning-Ferris Industries…more

Browning-Ferris Industries of California Inc., Collective Bargaining, Employer Liability Issues, Franchises, Joint Employers

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Labor Letter, October 2013: Variety Is The Spice Of The Court: A Preview of the 2013-14 Supreme Court Term

The upcoming Supreme Court term promises a series of significant decisions for employers. No less than seven cases (and potentially two more pending petitions) will have at least some impact on all employers this year. The…more

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HIPAA' s Criminal Charges Pack a Heavy Punch

Almost all healthcare providers and health plan administrators are familiar with the detailed requirements of the privacy and security rules under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Violations can…more

Civil Monetary Penalty, Criminal Prosecution, Health Care Providers, Healthcare, HIPAA

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Construction Contractors Subject To New OFCCP Rules

Because of a recent court decision, federal construction contractors must comply with several new regulations that many consider burdensome. An effort to exempt construction contractors from some of the new regulations was…more

Affirmative Action, Construction Workers, Contractors, Disability, Hiring & Firing

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Top Ten Ways To Hold A Company Party – Without Getting Sued

With the Holiday Season in full swing, many employers ask us about the wisdom of holding company parties where alcohol will be served. They generally want to know about the risk involved if an employee drinks too much at the…more

Employer Liability Issues, Holiday Parties, Holidays, Wine & Alcohol

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Enforcing Your Policies Outside The Workplace

All employers adopt and enforce policies regulating conduct at the workplace. Many employers expect that employees will follow their employment polices at all times regardless of whether the employee is working or at work…more

Employee Rights, FMLA, NLRA, NLRB, OSHA

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Can I Get A Witness (Or At Least A Witness Statement)? NLRB Rules Witness Statements Are Now Fair Game

For over 35 years, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) held that witness statements obtained by unionized employers during pre-arbitration investigations were exempt from disclosure to the union. However, on June 26, 2015,…more

Anheuser-Busch, Arbitration, Canning v NLRB, Collective Bargaining, Disclosure

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Washington Employers Must Pay Piece Rate Workers Additional Rest Break Compensation

With some limited exceptions, Washington State wage and hour rules require that workers receive a paid 10 minute rest break for every four hours worked. The Washington Supreme Court has now expanded employer obligations in this…more

Class Action, Employer Liability Issues, Farm Workers, Farms, Piece-Rate Pay

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Ohio's Minimum Wage Boosted 15 Cents On January 1

Minimum wage workers in Ohio will see their hourly pay increase by 15 cents in 2015. Effective January 1st, the Ohio minimum wage rate increased from $7.95 to $8.10 per hour. The minimum wage rate for tipped employees is…more

COLA, Minimum Wage

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Supreme Court: Voters' Initiative To End Affirmative Action Is Constitutional

In a highly anticipated decision, the Supreme Court upheld Michigan’s Proposal 2, which amended the Michigan Constitution to prohibit racial preferences in admissions to public schools and government programs…more

ACLU, Admissions, Affirmative Action, Diversity, NAACP

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New California Law Expands Retaliation Coverage

Employees Requesting Accommodation Are Now Protected - On July 16, 2015, Governor Brown signed into law AB 987, amending the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) to reflect what many already believed to be…more

Adverse Employment Action, Employer Liability Issues, FEHA, Human Resources Professionals, New Legislation

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New Guidance On Wellness Programs

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently issued proposed new rules clarifying its stance on the interplay between the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and employer wellness programs. Officially…more

ADA, Affordable Care Act, EEOC, Employer Group Health Plans, HIPAA

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Whistleblower Protection Extends To Federal Workers Who Violate Agency Regulations

Yesterday the U.S. Supreme Court held that an agent of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) who disclosed information that was prohibited by TSA regulations, was nonetheless protected under the Whistleblower…more

DHS v Maclean, Disclosure, DOT, SCOTUS, TSA

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The ADA: A Far Cry From the ABCs

Qualified individuals, reasonable accommodations, undue hardship, fundamental alteration – these terms associated with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) are a far cry from the simplicity of the ABCs, and cause much…more

ADA, Confidentiality, Educational Institutions, Employer Liability Issues, Public Schools

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Construction Contractors Subject To New OFCCP Rules

Because of a recent court decision, federal construction contractors must comply with several new regulations that many consider burdensome. An effort to exempt construction contractors from some of the new regulations was…more

Affirmative Action, Construction Workers, Contractors, Disability, Hiring & Firing

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Labor Letter, August 2013: Five Documents Sure To Appear In Your Lawsuit

Although simple and oftentimes overused, sports metaphors can provide insight into complicated topics. When it comes to employment litigation, cases often boil down to “blocking and tackling.” In other words, the fundamental…more

Adverse Employment Action, Disciplinary Proceedings, Employee Handbooks, Litigation Strategies, Performance Reviews

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Federal Contractors To Be Burdened With Additional Disclosure Requirements If Government Has Its Say

The U.S. Labor Department (DOL) and three federal agencies (the Department of Defense, the General Services Administration and NASA) recently issued two proposed documents relating to the implementation of Executive Order 13673,…more

Comment Period, Disclosure Requirements, DOD, DOL, Employer Mandates

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Illinois Employers Must Offer Retirement Savings Program

Illinois has become the first state in the nation to enact a law requiring businesses to offer their employees a retirement savings plan. Signed into law recently by Gov. Pat Quinn, the new law, entitled “Illinois Secure Choice…more

Employee Benefits, Employer Mandates, New Legislation, Retirement Plan

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Are Your Contractors Actually Employees? DOL Says Probably Yes

Last month, the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) issued an Administrator's Interpretation aimed at addressing what it characterizes as the “problematic trend” of employers misclassifying workers as independent contractors rather…more

Administrative Interpretation, Affordable Care Act, Best Practices, DOL, Economic Realities Test

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Distracted Driving: What's In Your Policy?

Long before cell phones, drivers faced various distractions: eating, grooming, attending to children, changing the radio station, rubbernecking someone else’s accident, becoming absorbed in a conversation, or arguing. These…more

Distracted Driving

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President, OFCCP Set New Employment Rules For Federal Contractors

While chastising Congress as “doing nothing,” the executive and administrative branches of the federal government were busy making new employment rules for federal contractors and subcontractors. This summer, President…more

Contractors, Employee Rights, Federal Contractors, OFCCP, Subcontractors

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Ninth Circuit Holds Service Advisors Non-Exempt Under FLSA Dealership "Salesman" Exemption; Section 7(i) Exemption Is Still Available

The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (with jurisdiction over the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington) has ruled in Navarro v. Encino Motorcars, LLC that Service…more

Automotive Industry, Car Dealerships, Exempt-Employees, FLSA, Trucking Industry

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Playing It Safer: Managing Concussion-Litigation Risk In K-12 Athletics

Following a week-long trial in May, an Iowa jury concluded that Bedford High School was negligent in the way it handled a head injury to former high school freshman football player Kacey Strough. The jury awarded Kacey $1…more

Athletes, Public Schools, Student Athletes

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Dealership Handbooks Remain In The NLRB's Crosshairs

As we advised almost a year ago, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has recently been subjecting dealership handbooks to increased legal scrutiny. Whether or not your dealership is unionized, your employment policies are…more

Automotive Industry, Car Dealerships, Confidential Information, Dress Codes, Employee Handbooks

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Answering The Call

California leads the nation in vigilantly regulating the conditions which constitute “hours worked.” Definitions are established, modified, and expanded by the California Labor Code, its Wage Orders, and decisions by appellate…more

FLSA, Labor Code, On-Call Employees, Security Guards, Wage and Hour

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The ACA Is (Apparently) Here To Stay: What Employers Need To Know

Now that the Supreme Court has, for the second time, upheld a major portion of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), it might be a good time to review your practices to ensure you are in compliance. The ACA’s new concept of what it…more

Affordable Care Act, Benefit Plan Sponsors, Best Management Practices, COBRA, Employment Policies

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Employee or Independent Contractor: Why It Matters?

Every employer eventually tackles the question of whether its labor force is composed of employees, independent contractors, or a combination of both. The appeal of the independent contractor classification is understandable…more

Employer Liability Issues, Independent Contractors, Misclassification, Wage and Hour

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The Case Of GINA And The "Devious Defecator"

In a case dubbed “the mystery of the devious defecator” by a Georgia federal district judge, an Atlanta jury recently awarded a $2.2 million verdict against a company that requested DNA samples from two workers in an attempt to…more

Discrimination, Distributors, Employer Liability Issues, Genetic Testing, GINA

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The EEOC's Focus On Religious Accommodations

Religious accommodation claims are on the EEOC’s radar screen. This means that offering religious accommodations to employees and applicants must be on your radar screen as well. …more

Compliance, EEOC, Employer Liability Issues, Reasonable Accommodation, Religion

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Let the H-1B Games Begin: May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor

Katniss Everdeen’s bow and arrow will not help employers on April 1st, 2014 when the competition for H-1B work visas begins. On April 1, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) begins accepting H-1B petitions for…more

H-1B, Immigrants, USCIS, Visas

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5 Attributes of a Successful Non-Compete Agreement

Given the rising use of non-competes in all manner of businesses, we asked JD Supra contributors to tell us what's required in a successful agreement between employer and employee. Here is what we heard back…more

Employment Contract, Hiring & Firing, Legal Perspectives, Non-Compete Agreements, Popular

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It's Time to Start Planning Your Summer

It is hard to believe that the 2014/15 school year is coming to a close. Summer projects beckon. So, what should be on the list for your summer (other than some vacation time)? Ideally, if you haven’t done it lately, you…more

Best Management Practices, Educational Institutions, Employee Handbooks, Handbooks, Students

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Employee Communications: Your Internal Public Relations Campaign

If your organization regularly communicates with employees, then you understand the value of keeping employees informed about changes and plans for the organization. If you don’t have a program for regular employee…more

Best Management Practices, Corporate Culture

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Comment Period Will Not Be Extended

There will be no extension of the original 60-day period for commenting on the U.S. Labor Department's proposals and requests relating to the federal Fair Labor Standards Act's Section 13(a)(1) exemptions. U.S. Wage and Hour…more

Comment Period, Compliance, DOL, FLSA, FOIA

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President Obama Announces Executive Action on Immigration

President Obama has announced his plan for what he says is a partial fix of the U.S. immigration system. Through this Executive Action, more than four million undocumented individuals will get relief from deportation and will…more

Barack Obama, DACA, DAPA, Deportation, DHS

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Fast-Food Chain Employers: Take Steps Now to Avoid Being the Next FLSA Headline

On almost a daily basis, we read articles about class action lawsuits and settlements against fast-food chains. Almost all chains have had them. Fisher & Phillips has defended many of these lawsuits for different chains in all…more

Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, Fast-Food Industry, FLSA

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ERISA Plan Can't Shrink Deadlines Without Providing Notice, Says 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals

The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals just ruled that an ERISA plan can’t shorten the deadline for filing a legal action challenging a denial of benefits unless the participant receives written communication of the plan’s altered…more

Appeals, Benefit Plan Sponsors, Breach of Contract, Denial of Benefits, DOL

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Looking Over Your Employees' Shoulders

As shifting privacy lines allow employers to reach further and further into employee conduct, it’s increasingly important that you know the legal limits. Many employees will question the legality of increased employer monitoring…more

Corporate Counsel, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Policies, GPS, Illegal Conduct

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Taking Care of Employees Assigned Abroad

This article is the third in a series addressing employer considerations when beginning or acquiring cross-border operations. So your company is expanding and, for the first time, you'll be sending key employees abroad…more

Business Travel, Cross-Border, International Travel, Multinationals, Risk Assessment

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Must Poultry Employers Comply with Terms of Letter from Heads of USDA and OSHA?

OSHA recently reminded the Poultry Industry that it has not lost interest in a multiple front attack on processors, as shown by the almost $1,000,000 in citations issued against a Midwestern processor. You should view these…more

Best Practices, DOL, OSHA, Posting Requirements, USDA

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Duran v. U.S. Bank: When Class Certification Goes Wrong

The California Supreme Court recently handed down a landmark decision on class actions. The trial judge lost control of the certification and evidentiary presentation of the case resulting in a $15 million verdict against U.S…more

Class Action, Class Certification, U.S. Bank National Association, US Bank

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Court Rejects Kentucky Wage-Hour Representative Actions

The Kentucky Wages and Hours Act provides the mechanism for pursuing redress for minimum-wage or overtime violations under that law. KRS 337.385 provides, in pertinent part, that "[s]uch action may be maintained in any court of…more

FLSA, Jurisdiction, Minimum Wage, New Legislation, Unpaid Overtime

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Australia – Examination of the Test to Determine Worker Status: Independent Contractor or Employee?

The Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia recently considered whether an agency contractor was an employee or an independent contractor in the case of Tattsbet Limited v. Morrow [2015] FCAFC 62. Overturning the lower…more

Australia, Employees, Entrepreneurs, Independent Contractors, Misclassification

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Labor Letter, February 2013: How To Weigh Obesity In Employment Decisions

Imagine you are the Hiring Manager for a distribution warehouse and have just begun interviewing applicants for a materials handler position. The first candidate enters the room, standing at a height of 5’4”, weighing more than…more

ADA, ADAAA, Disability, Disability Discrimination, Discrimination

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Eligibility Rules Need To Be In Writing

Healthcare reform continues to roll on. 2014 saw the implementation of the health insurance exchanges, the Individual Mandate, and a host of new rules relating to employer-provided health coverage. 2015 marks the start of yet…more

Affordable Care Act, Employer Group Health Plans, Employer Mandates, ERISA, Full-Time Employees

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The EEOC Goes Electronic: FAQs On EEOC's New Electronic Pilot Program

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently rolled out a pilot program to electronically notify employers of new Charges filed against them. Instead of mailing the Notice of Charge of Discrimination form through…more

ACT Digital, Discrimination, EEOC, Electronic Communications, Employer Liability Issues

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Labor Contractors Can Make Dangerous Bedfellows: Part I

According to many sources, there is a shortage of unskilled workers in the United States that is only projected to worsen, and employers nationwide are feeling the pinch. From hoteliers to seafood processors, manufacturers to…more

Employer Liability Issues, FLSA, Hiring & Firing, Labor Contractor, Third-Party Risk

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Business Travel to Australia with a Criminal Background

2015 marks the 75th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the United States and Australia. In 1940, the two countries established diplomatic relations following the United Kingdom's recognition of Australia's domestic and…more

Australia, Business Travel, Criminal Records, Customs and Border Protection, Visas

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Contact

1075 Peachtree Street, NE Suite 3500
Atlanta, Georgia 30309, United States

Contact: Kevin L. Sullivan, Chief Marketing Officer

  • (404) 240-4248

Areas of Practice
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Other U.S. Locations
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100+ Attorneys

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