Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.

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Peter Alfaro

Diversity—More Than Checkbox Demographics

Diversity is more than “checkbox” demographics. This may seem obvious, but I think it’s an important point that is often overlooked. Organizations often take a narrow view of diversity by focusing on things like the gender and…more

Business Development, Career Development, Corporate Culture, Diversity

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Margaret Carroll Alli

Avoiding Mistletoe Mishaps, Part VI: When Religion And Work Collide—Responding To Requests For Accommodations At Work

As 2013 comes to an end, we have been considering a number of workplace issues that employers might face at the end of the year and the beginning of the holiday season. Part six of our year-end holiday series explains how to…more

Employer Liability Issues, Holidays, Reasonable Accommodation, Religion

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Christopher Anderson

“Entirely Comfortable” With a “Monster”: A Striking Decision From an Unlikely Source About Excessive Fines Under the FCA

As we have discussed before, whistleblower and retaliation decisions—including from the Supreme Court of the United States—have created an increasingly whistleblower-friendly body of law that unifies courts across the…more

Employer Liability Issues, False Claims Act, Fines, Retaliation, SCOTUS

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Kwabena A. Appenteng

Illinois Supreme Court Strikes Down Eavesdropping Statute as Overly Broad

The Illinois Supreme Court recently issued two opinions that together invalidated Illinois’ eavesdropping statute, 720 ILCS 5/14-2. The statute, which is part of the Illinois Criminal Code, prohibits a person from “knowingly and…more

Audio Recording, Consent, crim, Eavesdropping, Employer Liability Issues

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Stephanie Aranyos

New Year In New York State Means A New Minimum Wage

Effective December 31, 2013, the minimum wage in New York State will increase from $7.25 per hour to $8.00 per hour. The overtime rate of pay for hourly, non-tipped employees earning the minimum wage will increase to $12.00 per…more

Exempt-Employees, Hospitality Industry, Minimum Wage, Non-Exempt Employees, Posting Requirements

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Michelle R. Arendt

Buyer Beware

Recently, the Ohio Supreme Court issued a decision that highlighted the fact that companies cannot assume that the forms and agreements of a prior company will provide the same protections for a successor company. In Acordia of…more

Assignments, Non-Compete Agreements

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Hera Arsen, Ph.D.

High Court Rules Some Severance Payments Are Taxable

Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States held that severance payments are taxable under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) when made to employees whose employment is involuntarily terminated. The Court…more

FICA Taxes, Income Taxes, Quality Stores, Severance Pay, Termination

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John Artz

Avoiding Mistletoe Mishaps, Part III: OSHA Releases Crowd Management Safety Guidelines For Retailers

As 2013 comes to an end, we have been considering a number of workplace issues that employers might face at the end of the year and the beginning of the holiday season. In parts one and two of this blog series, we covered…more

OSHA, Retailers, Safety Precautions

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Lisa Karen Atkins

NLRB Regional Director Rules College Football Players Can Unionize

On March 26, 2014, a regional director for the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a decision and direction of election in a union representation petition filed by the College Athletes Players Association (CAPA) seeking…more

College Athletes, NLRB, Unions

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Jamey Ayers

Bromance Gone Bad: The Immigration Bunkers of a Golfer’s Marriage

The P-1A visa category is reserved for those “internationally recognized” individual athletes or teams that seek to enter the United States temporarily for the sole purpose of performing in a competition, event, or performance…more

Athletes, Immigrants, Sports, Visas

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Melissa A. Bailey

OSHA Signals an Increased Focus on Hospital Industry

On January 15, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) launched a new, online compliance assistance tool for hospitals called, “Worker Safety in Hospitals: Caring for our…more

DOL, Healthcare, Healthcare Professionals, Hospitals, OSHA

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Tracey T. Barbaree

An Employer’s Attention to Time Record Detail May Thwart Collective Action Claims

Collective action claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) remain the most popular filing in federal courts, due in large part to the fairly lenient standard applied by courts to determine whether the claims should be…more

Class Action, Class Certification, FLSA

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Adriana S. Barnette

Broward County Becomes The Second County In Florida To Adopt Wage Protection Ordinance

On October 23, 2012, Broward County became the second county in Florida to adopt a controversial wage protection ordinance. In a seven-to-two vote, with Commissioners Stacy Ritter and Chip LaMarca voting against the ordinance,…more

Wage and Hour, Wage Theft Prevention Act, Wages

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James Barrett

Federal Judge Approves Contractual Limitation On Time To Bring Employment Claims Under Oregon Law

A federal court in Oregon recently ruled that employment agreements may impose a reasonable limitation on the time period in which an employee may bring statutory and common law claims against his or her employer, even when that…more

Employee Benefits, Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Contract, Statute of Limitations

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Ashlee M. Bekish

Minnesota Employers Beware: 2013 Legislative Changes

The 2013 legislative session was a busy one for the state’s legislators…more

Compensation & Benefits, Employee Benefits, Hiring & Firing, Same-Sex Marriage, Service Animals

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Tina Bengs

What's the One Thing Missing from Most Employee Handbooks?

In your experience, what's the one thing most employers overlook when putting together an employee handbook? The answer to that question depends on whom you ask - and, for a legal perspective, we put it to leading employment…more

Confidentiality, Disability, Employee Handbooks, FMLA, Hiring & Firing

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Robert Bettac

Is An Employee Who Is Six Days out of Rehab “Disabled” Under the TCHRA?

The Texas Commission on Human Rights Act (TCHRA) provides that a “current condition of addiction” to alcohol, drugs, or controlled substances is not a covered “disability.” In Melendez v. Houston Independent School District…more

ADA, Disability, Disability Discrimination, Drug & Alcohol Abuse, Hiring & Firing

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Jennifer Betts

The Employment Law Authority - July/August 2013

In This Issue: - Supreme Court Issues Two Key Title VII Rulings - Ogletree Deakins Launches New Fall Seminar - Are Your HIPAA Privacy Policies Up To Date - OFCCP Clarifies Damages For Victims Of Bias - The…more

Bias, Confirmation Proceedings, Discrimination, EEOC, Harassment

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Charles F. Billington

Ohio Employers Have to Give Employees Time off to Vote, But Whether They Get Paid—Depends

It’s election season again, and that means that Ohioans will once again take to the polls. But, as an Ohio employer, do you need to allow your employees to take time off from work to vote? Yes…more

Voting Leave

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Frank Birchfield

The Employment Law Authority - January/February 2014

In This Issue: - FAMILY TRIP HELD PROTECTED BY FMLA - Court Finds Worker Continued To Care For Her Ill Mother - WELCOME TO FABULOUS LAS VEGAS! Workplace Strategies 2014 Heading Toward A Sellout - Wage & Hour. State…more

Canning v NLRB, Employee Rights, FMLA, Human Resources Professionals, NLRB

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Alexandra Bodnar

The Wage & Hour Perils of Employing Personal Assistants

No one would ever accuse Lady Gaga of being boring. Case in point: her current legal woes, which make an excellent and entertaining cautionary tale for employers…more

Administrative Expenses, FLSA, Lady Gaga, Unpaid Overtime, Unpaid Wages

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Adam Boland

Would Texas Law Support Disgorgement of Payments When Plaintiff’s Daughter Makes Comments On Facebook?

In a case that received national attention, on February 26, 2014, a Florida District Court of Appeal held that a plaintiff’s comments to his daughter regarding a settlement with his former employer and his daughter’s subsequent…more

Age Discrimination, Disgorgement, Retaliation

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John Boylston

Portland Paid Sick Leave Ordinance Passes

The city of Portland joined San Francisco, Seattle, Washington D.C., and the state of Connecticut today when it passed a paid sick leave ordinance. Under the new ordinance, businesses with six or more employees must provide up…more

Local Ordinance, Medical Leave, Paid Leave

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Karen Brandon

Puerto Rico Plans Get Yet Another Extension to Make Changes for the Puerto Rico Tax Code of 2011

The Puerto Rico Department of the Treasury (the Hacienda) recently issued Circular Letter No. 13-02, formally extending the deadlines for the adoption of amendments and the filing for determination letters with the Hacienda…more

Tax Extensions, Tax Filing Delay, Tax Returns

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Cynthia A. Bremer

Applying Wage and Hour Laws to the 21st Century Series: Concerns Involving Exempt Employees

In this, our final post in this blog series on wage and hour issues in the 21st century, we address another frequent area of concern for employers: exempt employees…more

Deductions, Exempt-Employees, FLSA, FMLA, Medical Leave

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Martin Brook

Michigan Employers May Soon Obtain Relief From Oppressive And Risky Wage Garnishments

An order for a wage garnishment is surprisingly complex to administer and very risky for employers. For instance, if an employer does not answer a garnishment within 14 days or do any other act required by the court, it is…more

Debt, Employer Liability Issues, Wage and Hour, Wage Garnishment

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Nicole Brooks

USCIS Receives Around 172,500 H-1B Petitions, Completes Selection Lottery

On April 7, 2014, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) stated that it had received sufficient H-1B cap-subject petitions to reach the annual 65,000 “regular cap” limit for fiscal year (FY) 2015. USCIS also received…more

H-1B, USCIS, Visa Caps

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Christina Maistrellis Broxterman

Eleventh Circuit Rules On Wellness Program Under The ADA

On August 20, 2012, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a district court ruling that a basic wellness program feature—a $20 penalty for failing to complete a health risk assessment—did not violate the Americans with…more

ADA, Disability, Discrimination, EEOC, Safe Harbors

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Scott Brutocao

Using Your Social Media Strategy to Protect Trade Secrets and Minimize Liability

As most employers know, restrictive covenant agreements, often referred to as Confidentiality Agreements or Proprietary Information Agreements, are not the only documents that can be used to protect employers’ confidential and…more

Social Media, Social Media Policy, Trade Secrets

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Mark H. Burak

R.I. Enacts “Ban-the-Box” Law, Limiting Employer Inquiries into Applicants’ Criminal Histories

Effective January 1, 2014, a new law in Rhode Island will ban employers from inquiring on job applications about the criminal histories of applicants…more

Ban the Box, Criminal Background Checks, Criminal Records, Discrimination, Employer Liability Issues

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Preston Burch

Judgment Reduced, but the Importance of Monitoring Plan Investments Reaffirmed

On March 19, 2014, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld one of the first excessive fee rulings in favor of retirement plan participants. Two years ago, in Tussey v. ABB, Inc., et al., No. 06-4305 (Mar. 31, 2012), a…more

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Carson G. Burnham

Independent Contractor or Employee: How Some Countries Differ

In this series of blog posts, we have examined the use of independent-contractor relationships by multinational organizations. In our last three posts, we identified issues for global entities that are considering using…more

Classification, Full-Time Employees, Independent Contractors, International Labor Laws

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Drew Burnside

The Fifth Circuit Giveth and Then Taketh Away: Another Perspective on Fluctuating Workweeks in Overtime Cases

In the course of two months, two separate Fifth Circuit panels have issued decisions that call into question the application of the fluctuating workweek (FWW) method in suits for unpaid overtime based on misclassification. In…more

Employee Rights, Fluctuating Workweek, Unpaid Overtime, Wage and Hour, Wages

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Anthony Byergo

NLRB Regional Director Rules College Football Players Can Unionize

On March 26, 2014, a regional director for the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a decision and direction of election in a union representation petition filed by the College Athletes Players Association (CAPA) seeking…more

College Athletes, NLRB, Unions

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Margaret H. Campbell

California Expands Protections for Employee Whistleblowers

Attention all employers with employees in California: On October 12, 2013, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill (SB) 496, amending the whistleblower retaliation provisions set forth in section 1102.5 of…more

Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Internal Investigations, Retaliation, Whistleblowers

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Christopher J. Capone

New Jersey Supreme Court To Revisit Employer Liability For Sexual Harassment By Supervisors

On November 6, 2013, the New Jersey Supreme Court granted certification in Aguas v. State of New Jersey, 2013 WL 1136115 (App. Div. Mar. 20, 2013), a pro-employer ruling on the issue of employer liability for sexual harassment…more

Anti-Harassment Policies, Department of Corrections, Employer Liability Issues, Sexual Harassment, Supervision

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Matthew A. Carmona

Right-to-Work’s Impact on Union Membership in Michigan

Michigan’s two right-to-work laws became effective on March 28, and have likely left many wondering how they impact their own workplaces and what effect they will have on union membership in the future. Essentially, the laws…more

Collective Bargaining, Right to Work, Union Security Clauses, Unions

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John Richard Carrigan

NLRB Regional Director Rules College Football Players Can Unionize

On March 26, 2014, a regional director for the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a decision and direction of election in a union representation petition filed by the College Athletes Players Association (CAPA) seeking…more

College Athletes, NLRB, Unions

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Robert P. Casey

Loose Lips Do Not Always Sink Ships—Seventh Circuit Rejects EEOC’s View on ADA Medical Records Rule

In EEOC v. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans (issued on November 20, 2012), the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which is the federal appellate court covering Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin, ruled that a company did not…more

ADA, Disability, Discrimination, EEOC, Medical Records

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Ron Chapman

Fifth Circuit Denies NLRB Petition to Review D.R. Horton. What It Means for Employers...

The decision affects every employer with an arbitration agreement and every employer that wants to avoid class and collective actions, which should be all of them…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Class Action, Collective Actions, D.R. Horton v NLRB

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Hema Chatlani

Third Department Affirms Unemployment Insurance Appeal’s Board Finding Of No Misconduct Due To Unintentional Internet Usage

In the Matter of the Claim of Jay Osborne, 102 A.D.3d 1048 (3d Dep’t Jan. 24, 2013): In this case, the plaintiff was terminated for violating his employer’s policy against personal use of the Internet during work hours because…more

Unemployment Insurance, Willful Misconduct

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Gregory Cheng

California Employer Held Liable For Employee’s Accident During Commute

Moradi v. Marsh USA, No. B239858 (September 17, 2013): A California Court of Appeal recently held that an employer was vicariously liable for a car accident that occurred when an employee was driving home from work. …more

Car Accident, Employer Liability Issues, Vicarious Liability

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Tom Christina

Administration Announces Plan to Postpone Employer Mandate Assessments Until 2015

A Treasury Department official announced late this afternoon that the Obama administration “will provide an additional year” before certain provisions of the Affordable Care Act go into effect…more

Affordable Care Act, Delays, Employer Mandates, Pay or Play, Shared Responsibility Rule

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Evan Citron

Second Circuit Affirms Rulings In Long-Standing Suit Involving Title VII Class Claims Brought By New York City Teachers

Gulino v. The Board of Education of the New York City School District of the City of New York, No. 13-cv-1001 (2d Cir. Feb. 4, 2014): A recent decision by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a ruling by the lower court…more

Board of Education, Civil Rights Act, Class Action, Teachers, Title VII

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Joseph Clees

Arizona Court Of Appeals Decision Highlights Employer’s Burden Of Proving Disqualification From Unemployment Benefits

The Arizona Court of Appeals recently issued an opinion overturning the Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board’s denial of unemployment benefits to an employee who was terminated for excessive tardiness…more

Burden of Proof, Disqualification, Hiring & Firing, Unemployment Benefits, Willful Misconduct

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A. Craig Cleland

Supreme Court Weighs In On FLSA Class Action Issues

On April 16, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Genesis Healthcare Corp. et al. v. Symczyk that a collective action brought by a worker under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was properly dismissed because the worker’s…more

Collective Actions, Dismissals, FLSA, Genesis HealthCare, Genesis Healthcare Corp. v. Symczyk

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Justin S. Coffey

Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions For FY 2015 Should Be Filed On March 31, 2014 To Be Received By USCIS On April 1, 2014

The filing period for “new” H-1B petitions to be counted against the annual H-1B quota (the “H-1B cap”) for FY 2015 begins on Tuesday, April 1, 2014. Note that petitions need to be mailed on March 31 to ensure receipt by the…more

Filing Deadlines, H-1B, Immigrants, USCIS, Visas

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Jaime Cole

Postscript: To Compel Under the FAA or the MAA? That is the Question . . . With an Answer

In a previous post, I argued that in order to compel arbitration in Minnesota, an employer must attempt to come within the purview of the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) and not just the Minnesota Uniform Arbitration Act (MAA)…more

Arbitration, Federal Arbitration Act

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David J. Comeaux

“Hybrid” Wage And Hour Class Actions Approved By Third Circuit

On March 27, 2012, a unanimous three-judge panel of the Third Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion in Knepper v. Rite Aid, Inc. reversing the district court’s ruling that the plaintiffs could not pursue state wage and hour…more

Class Action, FLSA, Rite Aid, Wage and Hour, Wages

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Matthew Cooper

Colorado Legislative Wrap-Up

The 2013 Colorado legislative session resulted in three new laws that are significant for employers…more

Credit Reports, Damages, Discrimination, Hiring & Firing, Job Applicants

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Tressi L. Cordaro

MSHA/OSHA Report - May 2013

Escalating Enforcement by MSHA of Prohibition against Advance Notice of Inspection - Section 103 of the Federal Mine Safety Act requires the Secretary of Labor to conduct frequent inspections and investigations at mines…more

Advance Notice, Investigations, Mining, MSHA, OSHA

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Nicole Corvini

First Circuit Allows Retaliation Claim to Proceed Absent Direct Evidence of Decision Makers’ Retaliatory Animus

The First Circuit Court of Appeals recently took an expansive view of the type of evidence that is sufficient to raise a genuine issue of material fact to defeat an employer’s motion for summary judgment in a wage and hour case…more

Employer Liability Issues, Retaliation, Summary Judgment, Wage and Hour, Wages

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Amanda C. Couture

Avoiding Mistletoe Mishaps, Part IV: 20 Tips For A Festive, Safe, Non-Litigious Office Holiday Party

As 2013 comes to an end, we have been considering a number of workplace issues that employers might face at the end of the year and the beginning of the holiday season. In parts one, two, and three of this blog series, we…more

Holiday Parties, Holidays, Liability

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Tiffany Cox

New Texas Trade Secret Law Takes Effect September 1

The Texas Uniform Trade Secrets Act (TUTSA or the Act) takes effect on September 1, 2013, and will apply to the theft of trade secrets occurring on or after that date. While trade secrets have long received protection under…more

Injunctions, Theft, Trade Secrets, Uniform Trade Secrets Acts

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Christopher R. Coxson

New Jersey Clarifies New Hire Reporting Obligations

New Jersey employers traditionally must provide certain information about new hires (name, address, date of birth, and social security number) and the company (name, address, and federal tax ID) to the State Department of Human…more

Hiring & Firing, New Hires, Reporting Requirements, Unemployment Benefits

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Harold P. Coxson

Ogletree Deakins’ Founding Shareholder Homer Deakins Presents Testimony to NLRB on Historic Election Rule Proposal

Over 50 speakers testified, some of them on multiple panels, during the National Labor Relations Board’s two-day public meeting on representation election (“R-Case”) procedures on April 10-11. The oral testimony was part of the…more

Collective Bargaining, NLRB, NPRM, Union Elections, Union Representatives

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Steven Cuff

Connecticut Becomes the First State to Increase Minimum Wage to $10.10 per Hour by 2017

On March 27, 2014, Connecticut became the first state in the country to pass legislation mandating an increase to the state minimum wage to $10.10 per hour by 2017—the same rate to which President Barack Obama is seeking to…more

Employee Rights, Minimum Wage, Wage and Hour

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Patrick Curran, Jr.

Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law Survives Trade Association’s Challenge

The Massachusetts Independent Contractor statute, Mass. G.L. c. 149, § 148B, establishes a rigorous three-part test for determining whether a worker performing services for an employer may be considered an independent…more

Contractors, Independent Contractors, Non-Profits

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Maria Greco Danaher

Employee Needs More Than Speculation to Support his Retaliation Claim

To prevail on a claim of retaliation under federal law, an employee must prove that he or she engaged in a “protected activity” under an antidiscrimination statute and subsequently suffered an adverse employment action. In…more

ADA, Adverse Employment Action, Anti-Discrimination Policies, Best Management Practices, Documentation

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C. Thomas Davis

NLRB Reissues “Ambush Election” Rules On Steroids

Today, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced its intention to reissue a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for what has become known as the “ambush election” rules governing the procedures for union…more

Ambush Election Rules, NLRA, NLRB, NPRM, Unions

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Lara C. de Leon

Under New California Law—No Proof of Sexual Desire Required to Prove Sexual Harassment

On August 12, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill (SB) 292 which amends section 12940 of the California Fair Employment and Housing Act…more

Harassment, Jerry Brown, New Legislation, Sexual Conduct, Sexual Harassment

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Dara DeHaven

OFCCP Agrees to 5-Year Enforcement Moratorium for TRICARE Providers

In a letter to congressional leaders on March 11, 2014, Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez announced that the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) will issue a directive establishing a five-year moratorium on…more

Affirmative Action, Employee Benefits, Healthcare, OFCCP, TRICARE

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Maayan Deker

Third Department Affirms Unemployment Insurance Appeal’s Board Finding Of No Misconduct Due To Unintentional Internet Usage

In the Matter of the Claim of Jay Osborne, 102 A.D.3d 1048 (3d Dep’t Jan. 24, 2013): In this case, the plaintiff was terminated for violating his employer’s policy against personal use of the Internet during work hours because…more

Unemployment Insurance, Willful Misconduct

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Benjamin I. Delancy

December 31 Section 409A Correction Deadline for Severance Pay Approaching

The Internal Revenue Service(IRS) has given employers until December 31, 2012 to correct a problem frequently found in severance agreements and other similar arrangements. If the problem is not addressed by that date, then it…more

Deferred Compensation, IRS, Section 409A, Severance Agreements, Severance Pay

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Lee Gibbs Depret-Bixio

The Employment Law Authority - March/April 2013

In This Issue: - Immigration. Washington takes the first step toward immigration reform. - State Round-Up. Learn about the latest employment law news in your state. - Traditional. Wade Fricke and Matthew Kelley…more

ADA, Discrimination, EEOC, H1-B, HIPAA

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Colleen DeRosa

A Sea Change in the Illinois Restrictive Covenant Agreement Framework

As we previously discussed in our blog post, the “continued employment doctrine,” which is the majority view in Illinois, is that two years of continued employment after an employee enters a restrictive covenant is “substantial…more

Continued Employment Doctrine, Non-Compete Agreements, Restrictive Covenants

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Mark Diana

New Jersey Gender Equity Notice Now Available—Employer Obligations Start January 6, 2014

The New Jersey Department of Labor has just made available the gender equity notice that must be posted and distributed to New Jersey employees pursuant to P.L. 2012, c. 57, which was signed into law in September of last year…more

Civil Rights Act, Discrimination, Employment Policies, Gender Discrimination, Gender Equity

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W. Kyle Dillard

"Toxic” Mold Claims: Steps to Prevent and Aggressively Defend

TOXIC MOLD. SICK BUILDING SYNDROME. MOLD SICKNESS. These are some of the popular catch phrases employed by those who seek to profit by perpetuating the mythology that has fueled a cottage litigation industry of mold hysteria for…more

Construction Defense Strategies, Mold Litigation, Toxic Mold

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Carmen DiMaria

New Jersey Social Media Privacy Bill Becomes Law

On August 29, 2013, a more limited social media privacy bill (A2878), adopting the common sense conditions set forth in Governor Chris Christie’s previous conditional veto, was enacted. The new law, effective December 1, 2013,…more

Employee Rights, Passwords, Privacy Policy, Social Media

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Heidi K. Doescher

Major Changes At The EEOC Could Mean Major Liability For Employers

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) investigation and litigation tactics have been a hot topic lately, as the agency recently announced its plan to target more employers in bigger, more costly systemic…more

Disability Discrimination, Discrimination, EEOC, Enforcement, Enforcement Actions

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Monique Gougisha Doucette

Diversity in the Legal Profession: Practical Challenges and Every Attorney’s Role in a Successful Outcome

In March of 2013, the Louisiana State Bar Association hosted its sixth annual Conclave on Diversity in the Legal Profession. The purpose of this conclave is to “encourage discussion among judges and attorneys, primarily hiring…more

Bias, Career Development, Discrimination, Diversity, Law Practice Management

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Elizabeth Dougherty

Court Throws Out Union’s Railway Labor Act Challenge to Employer’s Withdrawal of Voluntary Recognition and Rejection of CBA

On February 18, 2014, in Herrera v. Command Security Corp. d/b/a Aviation Safeguards, 2:12-cv-10968-SVW-RZx, the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California ruled that an employer’s withdrawal of voluntary…more

Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, Railways, Unions

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Bruce J. Douglas

“Wailing and Cussing and Screaming and Hollering”—A “Singular Incident” or a Hostile Work Environment?

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals recently rejected the sex discrimination, hostile work environment, constructive discharge, and retaliation claims that a graphic designer brought against her employer and two of her managers…more

Adverse Employment Action, Hostile Environment, Human Resources Professionals, Sex Discrimination, Title VII

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Aimee Dreiss

What Does The ACA Shared Responsibility Final Rule Mean To Large Employers?

As many small employers rejoice over a delayed effective date, large employers should be rolling up their sleeves to adapt their evolving shared responsibility compliance strategies for 2015 to a new final rule from the U.S…more

Affordable Care Act, Employee Benefits, Employer Mandates, Healthcare, IRS

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Sean Driscoll

Oregon’s New Bereavement Leave Benefit — What Every Employer Should Know

Effective January 1, 2014, Oregon employers subject to the Oregon Family Leave Act (OFLA) must allow eligible employees to take up to two weeks of unpaid leave to deal with the death of a family member…more

Bereavement Leave, Employee Handbooks, Family Members, Posting Requirements, Unpaid Leave

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Jeffrey Dunlaevy

Supreme Court Expands Scope of Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Liability

Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its opinion in Lawson v. FMR LLC, No. 12-3, holding that the whistleblower protections of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 protect not only the employees of regulated public…more

Lawson v FMR, Retaliation, Sarbanes-Oxley, SCOTUS, Whistleblowers

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Kim F. Ebert

The Value Proposition

This article is reprinted with permission from the third edition of U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms.” Kim Ebert, the managing shareholder of Ogletree Deakins, was asked to contribute an article to the third edition of…more

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Matt Effland

Madness in March—The Final Four Reasons to be Wary of the NCAA Tournament in the Workplace

Okay, let’s get one thing straight right away: this is NOT a blog post telling you that it’s okay to sponsor an NCAA pool in your office or even suffer one to exist. That’s because I’m a lawyer and, according to federal and…more

Discrimination, Employment Policies, Sports, Sports Gambling

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Theresa Donahue Egler

Arbitrator’s Decision Finding Just Cause For Discharge Dooms Subsequent Statutory Claims, District Of New Jersey Holds

In Robbins v. U.S. Foodservice, Inc., 2012 WL 3781258 (D.N.J., August 30, 2012), a union employee’s discrimination (NJLAD) and leave law (FMLA and NJFLA) claims were dismissed because her union previously had grieved her…more

Arbitration Agreements, Collateral Estoppel, Discrimination, FMLA, Hiring & Firing

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Christopher Elko

Bill Introduced To Assist Unemployed Job Applicants In New Jersey

On February 27, 2014, a bill (S1440) was introduced in the Senate that would prohibit employers from basing employment decisions on an applicant’s unemployed status. The bill would supplement an existing law that prohibits…more

Job Applicants, Unemployment

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Samuel Endicott

Who Needs the Aggregation? Ninth Circuit Rejects Combining of PAGA Penalties to Establish Minimum Amount in Controversy

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued a decision in Urbino v. Orkin Services of California, Inc., No. 11-56944 (August 13, 2013) holding that civil penalties available under California’s Private Attorneys General…more

Aggregation Rules, Amount in Controversy, Civil Monetary Penalty, Diversity Jurisdiction, PAGA

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Jennifer Englander

2013 Legislative Update

The Louisiana 2013 Regular Legislative Session closed on June 6, 2013. 1. the Louisiana employment discrimination law relative to veterans (La. R.S. 23:331); 2. the Louisiana Equal Pay for Women Act (La. R.S. 23:661…more

Discrimination, Gender-Based Pay Discrimination, Hiring & Firing, New Legislation, Unemployment Benefits

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Ameneh Ernst

California Court Gives The Green Light For Arbitration Of Wrongful Termination Suit

Sanchez v. CarMax Auto Superstores California, LLC, B244772 (March 4, 2014): The California Court of Appeal recently found that an employer’s arbitration agreement and dispute resolution rules and procedures (DRRP) are not…more

Arbitration, Employer Liability Issues, Termination

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Sarah Jung Evans

Seattle Paid Sick And Safe Leave Ordinance—Employers With Employees Working In Seattle, Are You Ready For The New Seattle Ordinance?

Effective September 1, 2012, most private employers that have employees working within the city of Seattle, Washington will be required to provide such employees specific amounts of paid leave for use for personal illness,…more

Medical Leave, Paid Leave, Safe Leave

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Gretchen Ewalt

OFCCP Flexes its Muscle with Threats of Term Debarment

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) recently announced a significant monetary settlement of a complaint alleging hiring discrimination by a federal contractor. In this complaint, the agency alleged that…more

Discrimination, Federal Contractors, Hiring & Firing, OFCCP, Racial Discrimination

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Elizabethg Falcone

U.S. DOL Suffers Set Back on Tip-Pooling Regulations

A federal district court recently invalidated regulations issued by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) that prohibit employees from including non-tipped employees in a tip pool in certain situations…more

DOL, FLSA, Tip Credit, Tip-Pooling, Tips

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Patrick Fazzini

2015 Will Usher In Increased FLSA Liability for Home Health Care Agencies

On Tuesday, September 17, 2013, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued a final rule extending the Fair Labor Standard Act’s (FLSA) minimum wage and overtime protections to an estimated two million home health care workers…more

Companionship Exemptions, DOL, FLSA, Home Health Care, Liability

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Jesse Ferrantella

California Expands Protections for Employee Whistleblowers

Attention all employers with employees in California: On October 12, 2013, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill (SB) 496, amending the whistleblower retaliation provisions set forth in section 1102.5 of…more

Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Internal Investigations, Retaliation, Whistleblowers

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H. Ellis Fisher

NLRB Issues New Guidance on At-Will Disclaimers

The Office of the General Counsel (GC) of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) recently issued two advice memoranda that shed some light on the legality of employers’ “at-will” disclaimers in employee handbooks and…more

At-Will Employment, Employee Handbooks, Employment Contract, NLRA, NLRB

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Dallan Flake

Employers Should Reassess Strategy in Light of New Rulings from the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court of the United States recently issued two landmark rulings affecting the viability of arbitration as an alternative to costly litigation…more

American Express, American Express v Italian Colors Restaurant, Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Arbitration Awards

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Flyn L. Flesher

Cracking the Door? The Eleventh Circuit Again Considers When Out-of-Court FLSA Settlements Are Enforceable

In 1982, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals held in Lynn’s Food Stores, Inc. v. United States that employers and employees cannot settle claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) unless (1) the settlement is supervised…more

FLSA, Over-Time, Settlement, Wage and Hour, Wages

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James Fowles, III

One-Day Walkouts: Protected Activity or Unprotected Absenteeism?

Over the last two years various community activist groups—many backed by labor organizations—have implemented aggressive, public strategies designed to disrupt the workplace and put pressure on employers, especially in the…more

Absenteeism, Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, NLRA, NLRB

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Curtis Fox

New Jersey Pregnancy Bill Sent To Governor Christie

In the November 2013 issue of the New Jersey eAuthority, we reported on the Senate’s passage of a bill (S2995) expanding employment protections for pregnant women by..…more

Chris Christie, Compliance, Pregnancy, Pregnancy Discrimination, Protected Class

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Michael Fox

How To Calculate Unpaid Overtime: Fifth Circuit Rules In Favor of FWW

In an appeal concerning the correct calculation of overtime damages due to employees misclassified as exempt, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals emphatically slammed the door on a trial court’s attempt to require an employer to…more

Employer Liability Issues, Full-Time Employees, Misclassification, Unpaid Overtime, Wage and Hour

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Andrew Duke Frederick

The Employment Law Authority - November/December 2013

In This Issue: - Harassment. Are your executive training programs effective? - State Round-Up. Learn about the latest employment law news in your state - Unions. Harold Coxson and Baker Wyche discuss the new…more

ADA, Compliance, Employer Liability Issues, FMLA, Harassment

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Wade Fricke

The Employment Law Authority - March/April 2013

In This Issue: - Immigration. Washington takes the first step toward immigration reform. - State Round-Up. Learn about the latest employment law news in your state. - Traditional. Wade Fricke and Matthew Kelley…more

ADA, Discrimination, EEOC, H1-B, HIPAA

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Leigh Ganchan

DACA Program Raises Questions For Employers In The I-9 Process

Companies must balance countervailing mandates under immigration law: verifying employment eligibility while not discriminating unlawfully. With the recent implementation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)…more

DACA, Discrimination, Eligibility, Hiring & Firing, I-9

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Maria Fernanda Gandarez

DOS To Begin Conducting Site Visits For J-1 Hosts And Participants

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has advised designated sponsors within the intern and trainee categories that, beginning in March, representatives from the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) will conduct site…more

Department of State, Immigrants, J-1 Visas, Visas

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L. Gray Geddie, Jr.

Fourth Circuit Joins D.C. Circuit In Striking Down NLRB Notice Posting Rule

In a resounding victory for employers across the nation, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a recent decision of the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina, striking down the National Labor Relations…more

NLRA, NLRB, Notice Requirements, Posting Requirements

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Brian Gershengorn

Major League Baseball Volunteers Are not Employees Under the FLSA

On March 26, 2014, the District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed John Chen’s proposed Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) collective action against Major League Baseball (MLB) alleging that MLB had failed to pay…more

Employee Rights, FLSA, MLB, Volunteers

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Alexandra J. Gill

Arizona Court Of Appeals Decision Highlights Employer’s Burden Of Proving Disqualification From Unemployment Benefits

The Arizona Court of Appeals recently issued an opinion overturning the Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board’s denial of unemployment benefits to an employee who was terminated for excessive tardiness…more

Burden of Proof, Disqualification, Hiring & Firing, Unemployment Benefits, Willful Misconduct

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Charles Gillman

USCIS Receives Around 172,500 H-1B Petitions, Completes Selection Lottery

On April 7, 2014, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) stated that it had received sufficient H-1B cap-subject petitions to reach the annual 65,000 “regular cap” limit for fiscal year (FY) 2015. USCIS also received…more

H-1B, USCIS, Visa Caps

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John C. Glancy

Watch Your Assets Part Three: Why and When to Seek Injunctions and Temporary Restraining Orders

In our last two posts, we identified best practices for ensuring that a company’s house is in order, including the use of narrowly tailored restrictive covenant agreements (Part I) and adopting a company culture and behaviors…more

Fraud, Injunctions, Preliminary Injunctions, Restrictive Covenants, Tortious Interference

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Benjamin Glass

NLRB Throws in the Towel on Notice Posting Rule

In the end, the notice posting rule proposed by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) died not with a bang, but with a whimper. The NLRB’s proposed rule was earlier struck down by both the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals and…more

NLRB, Notice Requirements

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Ruthie L. Goodboe

The Employment Law Authority - January/February 2013

In This Issue: - Email Request Does Not Constitute "Complaint" - Former NLRB Member Joins Ogletree Deakins - For Employers, Pay-Or-play Proposals Could Be Worse, Much Worse - The NLRB In 2013: More Controversy…more

Canning v NLRB, Discrimination, FLSA, Immigration Reform, NLRB

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William E. Grob

Beware of Traps with Independent Contractor Business Models

Companies are increasingly moving away from the traditional employee model and implementing independent contractor models for some aspects of their business to reduce their direct labor costs without sacrificing market share,…more

Hiring & Firing, Independent Contractors, Misclassification

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Patricia Haim

Oregon’s New Bereavement Leave Benefit — What Every Employer Should Know

Effective January 1, 2014, Oregon employers subject to the Oregon Family Leave Act (OFLA) must allow eligible employees to take up to two weeks of unpaid leave to deal with the death of a family member…more

Bereavement Leave, Employee Handbooks, Family Members, Posting Requirements, Unpaid Leave

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Kelly L. Hamilton

The Ohio Supreme Court Gives Teeth To Noncompete Agreements Applicable To Acquired Employees

The Ohio Supreme Court recently reversed its prior decision limiting the enforceability of non-compete agreements acquired in mergers and acquisitions. In Acordia of Ohio, L.L.C. v. Fishel (Acordia I), the Supreme Court…more

Assignments, Non-Compete Agreements

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Margaret Santen Hanrahan

Who Will Be Entitled to Overtime Under Obama’s Expected Rule Change?

Today, President Obama signed a presidential memorandum instructing the Secretary of Labor to update regulations regarding overtime protections. According to White House officials, and a fact sheet that the White House released…more

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W. Scott Hardy

NLRB Regional Director Rules College Football Players Can Unionize

On March 26, 2014, a regional director for the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a decision and direction of election in a union representation petition filed by the College Athletes Players Association (CAPA) seeking…more

College Athletes, NLRB, Unions

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Rodney A. Harrison

Seventh Circuit Refuses to Review Arbitrator’s Decision to Allow Expert-Prepared Accident Report

Last week, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals decided Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division/IBT v. Norfolk Southern Railway Company, No. 12-3415 (March 11, 2014)…more

Accident Reports, Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Train Accidents

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W. Chris Harrison

Supreme Court Finds Air Carrier Immune From Defamation Claim For Reporting Employee’s Outburst to TSA

On January 27, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States reversed a nearly $1.2 million jury verdict for defamation against Air Wisconsin Airlines Corporation in a case surrounding the airline carrier’s report about a pilot…more

Air Wisconsin v. Hoeper, ATSA, Defamation, First Amendment, Free Speech

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Alysonne O. Hartfield

Recent U.S. Supreme Court Decision Will Not Likely Affect Alabama’s Immigration Law

On June 25, 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Arizona v. United States that several provisions of Arizona’s immigration law (S.B. 1070) could not be enforced because federal immigration law preempts state laws regarding…more

E-Verify, Preemption, SCOTUS

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Sarah J. Hawk

Latest Round of ICE I-9 Inspection Notices Issued

In recent weeks, employers nationwide have been ordered by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to submit their I-9 employment eligibility forms and other documents for inspection. In the last week of May, a new round of…more

Audits, Enforcement, I-9, ICE

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Brian Hayes

New Illinois Legislation Requires Settling Defendants In Certain Civil Litigation To Promptly Deliver Releases And Payments To Plaintiffs

A new Illinois law aimed at preventing defendants from delaying payment after agreeing to settle a claim will impact Illinois employers that settle certain tort claims. The new section of the Civil Practice Law, “Settlement of…more

New Legislation, Payment Plans, Release Agreements, Settlement

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John Hayes

New Law on the Horizon for Illinois Employers Settling Tort Claims

On January 1, 2014, a new section of the Civil Practice Law, “Settlement of claims; payment” (735 ILCS § 5/2-2301), will take effect. The Illinois legislature passed the law in an effort to expedite the payment process in…more

Defamation, Release Agreements, Retaliation, Settlement, Tortious Interference

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Michael T. Heenan

Tracking Patterns of Violations in Mines

In the mining industry MSHA enforcement of “pattern of violations” sanctions can be devastating to a mine operator’s business…more

Compliance, Employer Liability Issues, Enforcement, Mining, MSHA

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Kathy Helms

EEOC Issues Updated Guidance For Specific Disabilities

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently issued information on protection against disability discrimination in the form of four revised documents. The federal agency issued these guides, which are included in…more

ADAAA, Disability Discrimination, EEOC

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John K. Henning IV

Court Voids $1.5M Contract For Lack Of Consideration

In Yessenow v. Hudson (no. 2:08-cv-00353-PPS-APR), the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana found that the indemnification agreement and guaranty that Hilton Hudson, M.D. signed with Jeffrey Yessenow, M.D…more

Indemnity Agreements

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Kevin P. Hishta

Key Issues to Evaluate When Conducting an Internal Wage and Hour Audit

In our last blog post in this series on the “Anatomy of a DOL Audit,” we discussed tips for conducting an effective internal wage and hour audit. Now we consider some key issues to evaluate during that process…more

Audits, DOL, Exempt-Employees, Independent Contractors, Internal Investigations

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Logan A. Hollobaugh

Extra! Extra! Read All About It! Illinois Court Clarifies Contractor’s Right to Recover for Extra Work

The Illinois Appellate Court from the Fourth District broadly interpreted the elements necessary for contractors and subcontractors to recover for extra work, allowing for recovery based on the implicit approval of the owner…more

Contractors, Subcontractors

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Stephen J. Huey

Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions For FY 2014 Should Be Filed On March 29, 2013

The filing period for “new” H-1B petitions to be counted against the annual H-1B quota (the “H-1B cap”) for FY 2014 begins on Friday, March 29, 2013. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will accept cap-subject H-1B…more

H-1B, Visas

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Patrick Hulla

Avoiding Wage & Hour Lawsuits: Four Steps Every Employer Should Take

In light of the continued onslaught of wage and hour claims made by current and former employees, including putative class and collective actions, there are a number of steps employers can take to help mitigate potential…more

Arbitration Agreements, Audits, Class Action, Payroll Records, Timekeeping

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Christopher Humber

OSHA to Introduce Online Whistleblower Complaint Form

The process of filing whistleblower complaints is about to get a lot easier…more

Complaint Procedures, OSHA, Retaliation, Whistleblowers

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Stacey A. Huse

New Health Care Reform Fees—Will You Be Required to Pay?

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act established two fees to be paid by insurers and self-insured plans: (1) the Transitional Reinsurance Program (TRP) fee to raise revenue for health insurance issuers that cover high…more

Affordable Care Act, Fees, Form 720, HHS, HIPAA

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Allison Ianni

New York City Mayor Signs Expanded Sick Time Law, Effective April 1, 2014

On March 20, 2014, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed amendments to the New York City Earned Sick Time Act which, according to his administration, will extend the right to paid sick leave to a half million more New…more

Employee Rights, Paid Leave, Sick Leave

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Manish K. Jain

Inclusion Is A Choice: How My Hindu Wedding Taught Me How To Promote Diversity

This past summer, I married my wife in a traditional Indian wedding. We were both born in America and it was important for us to have a wedding that not only celebrated our love for one another, but also celebrated our culture,…more

Diversity

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Johnnie James

Engage—Before You Fire

Consider this scenario: An employee goes out on a leave of absence for anxiety. His doctor says he’s temporarily totally disabled. Then the leave gets extended because the employee is having problems adjusting to the…more

Disability Discrimination, Discrimination, FEHA, Hiring & Firing, Medical Leave

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Jathan Janove

Leadership Lessons from Training Animals: Interview with Certified Speaking Professional Shawna Schuh

In her professional speaking and executive coaching career, Shawna Schuh, Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), frequently draws on her years of raising animals and working with Women in the Pet Industry Network…more

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Lindsey Johnson

How To Calculate Unpaid Overtime, The Sequel: Fifth Circuit Rejects FWW Method In Misclassification Cases

In Black v. SettlePou P.C., the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a district court’s ruling concerning the proper methodology for calculating damages when an employee is misclassified as exempt. In so doing, the Fifth…more

Collective Actions, Damages, FLSA, Misclassification, Unpaid Overtime

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Betsy Johnson

Getting Down To Business: Highlights Of New California Employment Laws

With the start of the new year, it is the perfect time for employers to ensure that their policies reflect the changes in California law. We covered many of the laws affecting employers in our “California Legislative Update…more

Compliance, Crime Victims, Employer Liability Issues, FEHA, Minimum Wage

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Mike Johnson

NLRB Still Contemplating “Quickie” Union Election Rules

On November 26, 2013, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued its semiannual regulatory agenda, which, tellingly, focused on one issue—the Board’s proposed changes to the rules that will speed up union representation…more

NLRB, Union Elections, Unions

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Andrea Jones

How to Ensure an Inclusive Environment for Student Athletes and Issues of Sexual Identity

Recently, college sophomore Conner Mertens became the first college football player in the United States to publicly come out. Conner is the kicker on the Willamette University football team in Oregon. This unprecedented event…more

Athletes, Gender Identity, LGBT, Sexual Orientation Discrimination, Students

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David Jones

FAA Lets OSHA Standards Board the Plane

Last week, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued a final policy allowing the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to enforce certain of its safety standards for aircraft…more

Compliance, DOL, Enforcement, FAA, OSHA

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Robert A. Jones

California Supreme Court Action In Piece-Rate Pay Case Causes Concerns About Alternative Pay Systems

Gonzalez v. Downtown LA Motors, LP, No. S210681 (July 17, 2013): In April of 2013, a California Court of Appeal decided how automobile service technicians should be paid while waiting between jobs…more

FLSA, Payment Plans, Piece-Rate Pay, Wage and Hour

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Cristian Keeney

California’s Latest Concepcion Exception: Brown v. Superior Court of Santa Clara County

California courts do not like class action waivers…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, AT&T Mobility v Concepcion, Class Action, Class Action Arbitration Waivers

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Matthew J. Kelley

The Employment Law Authority - May/June 2013

I This Issue: - “Facebook Firing” Ruling Favors Employer - Workplace Strategies Hits New Highs - EEOC Issues Updated Guidance For Specific Disabilities - Genetic Discrimination Suit Settles - Third Circuit Sides…more

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Scott Kelly

OFCCP Launches New Databases to Assist With Disability and Veteran Regulations Compliance

On March 21, 2014, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) announced that it is launching two new databases to assist federal contractors and subcontractors. The new databases are intended to help contractors…more

Affirmative Action, Disability, Hiring & Firing, OFCCP, Veterans

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Jermaine Kidd

Did An Employer Inflate Its Worker’s Performance Deficiencies as a Pretext for Disability Bias? Mass. Court Says Maybe

On November 4, 2013, in Akerson v. Pritzker, No. 12-10240-PBS, the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts rejected the race discrimination and Equal Pay Act claims brought by a former employee of the U.S. Census…more

Census Bureau, Disability Discrimination, Discrimination, Equal Pay Act, Gender-Based Pay Discrimination

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Dawn Knepper

NFL Cheerleader Cries Foul Over Compensation

Standard contracts that sports franchises, such as the National Football League (NFL), use for independent contractors should be closely scrutinized in the wake of a newly filed class action lawsuit that is shining the spotlight…more

Classification, Independent Contractors, NFL, Wage and Hour

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Brandi Knox

Misuse Of Visas Lands Tech Giant In Hot Water

Infosys, an Indian technology outsourcing company, has agreed to pay a fine of $34 million after an extensive investigation by federal prosecutors in Texas. The investigation alleged that the tech giant misused the B-1 business…more

B-1, Fines, Fraud, H-1B, India

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Robin Koshy

Taking Documents To Support Discrimination Claims Can Be Prosecuted As Theft, Notwithstanding Quinlan, New Jersey Appellate Division Holds

In State v. Saavedra, 2013 WL 6763248 (App. Div. Dec. 24, 2013), a public sector employee learned that he could be indicted for criminal theft for taking his employer’s highly confidential, original documents..…more

Discrimination, Evidence, Public Employees, Theft

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Ceridwen Koski

USCIS Clarifies Eligibility Requirements For STEM OPT Extension

A recent interim policy memorandum, released by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), clarifies the degree completion requirements for the 17-month extension of Optional Practical Training (OPT) available to F-1…more

F-1, Immigrants, STEM, Students, USCIS

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Mark F. Kowal

New Jersey Bill Seeks To Raise Unemployment Insurance Rate Cap

On May 31, 2012, the New Jersey Senate unanimously passed a bill (S1121) aimed at assessing a higher unemployment insurance rate on employers with markedly lower Employer Reserve Ratios (i.e., those employers with more former…more

Unemployment Insurance

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Shira L. Krieger

Newark Close To Becoming Next City To Approve Sick Leave Ordinance

On January 28, 2014, the Newark City Council approved a sick leave ordinance that would require most private employers in Newark to provide their workers with paid time off. If the mayor of Newark signs this ordinance, Newark…more

Employee Benefits, Employee Rights, Sick Leave

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Elizabeth Kuhn

Florida Supreme Court Upholds Legislation Requiring Public Employees To Contribute To Retirement Accounts

In a 4-3 decision in Scott v. Williams, No. SC12-520 (Fla. Jan. 17, 2013), the Florida Supreme Court recently upheld the constitutionality of a 2011 law, Senate Bill 2100, requiring Florida’s public employees to contribute three…more

Breach of Contract, COLA, Collective Bargaining, Public Employees, Retirement

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Caitlin Senff Ladd

Governor Cuomo Proposes Increased Minimum Wage And Significant Changes To New York’s Employment Law In State Of The State Address

Although New York State’s recent strict assault weapons ban has garnered the majority of attention from Governor Andrew Cuomo’s 2013 legislative agenda, Governor Cuomo also has made significant proposals that will affect…more

Discrimination, Gender-Based Pay Discrimination, Minimum Wage, Unemployment Insurance, Wages

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Whitney Larson

Expect Significant EB-2 India Retrogression In December

The U.S. Department of State’s (DOS) Visa Bulletin sets out per country priority dates that regulate when an individual can begin the final phase of the “green card” process, either through adjustment of status or consular…more

Department of State, EB-2, Green Cards, USCIS, Visas

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Gregg M. Lemley

It’s 2:35 p.m. Do You Know (Or Care) Where Your Employees Are?

Today, technological advances make it easier for companies to track exactly where their products are at any given time. These same advances have given employers a similar opportunity to track their employees. Global positioning…more

Employee Rights, Employee Tracking, Technology

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Matthew Levine

Fragmented Workforces: Specialty Healthcare And The Advent Of “Micro-Units”

The National Labor Relations Board recently made it easier for unions to win representation elections by allowing unions to fragment workforces and cherry-pick the unit of employees most likely to support unionization. On March…more

Decision-Making Process, Multiple Bargaining Units, NLRB, Specialty Healthcare, Unions

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Janet Q. Lewis

National Defense Authorization Act Precludes OFCCP Jurisdiction Over TRICARE Provider

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Administrative Review Board has found that the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) lacks jurisdiction over Florida Hospital of Orlando, a TRICARE health services provider, based…more

DOL, Jurisdiction, NDAA, OFCCP, TRICARE

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Riard Linskell

U.K. Law for the U.S. Employer, Part III: Withholding Obligations and Immigration

The final post in this three-part series on U.K. employment laws covers the withholding and immigration obligations facing U.K. employers…more

Compliance, Immigrants, UK, Visas, Withholding Requirements

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Michael Little

Sixth Circuit Prohibits Employers From Contractually Shortening the Limitations Period for FLSA Claims

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued a decision in Boaz v. FedEx Customer Information Services, Inc., rejecting an employer’s defense to a claim made for unpaid overtime on the basis of a provision in an employment…more

Employer Liability Issues, Employment Contract, FLSA, Limitation Periods

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Leah Lively

Portland’s Sick Leave Ordinance—What Every Employer Should Know

Effective January 1, 2014, Portland’s sick leave ordinance goes into effect. The ordinance applies to any private sector employer (both within and outside of the state of Oregon) that employs individuals who work within the city…more

Compliance, Local Ordinance, Paid Leave, Sick Leave

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Steven Luckner

Employer’s Handbook Disclaimer Renders Agreement To Arbitrate Unenforceable, New Jersey District Court Holds

Employee handbooks typically contain an overview of company history, a set of employment policies and general guidance, and a clear and prominent disclaimer that nothing in the handbook creates a contract of employment between…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Employee Handbooks, Void and Unenforceable

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Ann Carr Mackey

Small Employers Catch a Big Break!

Employers with 50 to 99 employees were granted a break on Monday when the U.S. Treasury Department gave them an additional year to comply with the employer mandate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This relief was granted as…more

Affordable Care Act, Delays, Pay or Play, Shared Responsibility Rule, Small Business

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Rachel Reingold Mandel

Fired Employee Who Accused Coworkers of Sleeping with Boyfriend Lacks Triable Bias Claim

A retail employer did not violate federal civil rights laws or the Massachusetts state anti-discrimination law when it fired an employee because she made harassing, disparaging, and inappropriate accusations against her…more

Anti-Discrimination Policies, Discrimination, Harassment, Termination

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John Martin

Utah Supreme Court Rejects OSHA’s Multi-Employer Citation Policy

Multi-Employer Citation Policies - One of the most controversial policies of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is its Multi-Employer Citation Policy (better known as the “MEP”). OSHA uses this…more

Multiemployer Plan, OSHA, Safety Precautions

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Michelle Maslowski

Federal Minimum Wage Stagnant but 13 States Raise Their Minimum Wages

In 2013, the U.S. Department of Labor made raising the federal minimum wage one of its priorities. The federal agency sought to create a discussion about the minimum wage through social media and town hall meetings across the…more

DOL, Employee Rights, Minimum Wage, Wages

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David P. Mason

First Circuit Holds Massachusetts Salesman Violated Nonsolicitation Covenant, Even Though Customer Made “Initial Contact”

On September 23, 2013, the First Circuit Court of Appeals, applying Massachusetts law, upheld a preliminary injunction in a nonsolicitation covenant case, and discussed the often-murky line between “soliciting” and “accepting…more

Breach of Contract, Employer Liability Issues, Non-Solicitation Agreements, Restrictive Covenants

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Brian L. McDermott

Indiana Court Finds Employee’s Attempt At Humor Was Not Protected Religious Expression

Ronald Ogle worked as a Community Employment Specialist for the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (IDWD). On November 10, 2012, he forwarded to his coworkers an email that included a picture of a barbeque restaurant…more

Civil Rights Act, Freedom of Religion, Religion, Termination, Title VII

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Charles McDonald, III

Minnesota “Ban The Box” Legislation Update

Minnesota recently passed “ban the box” legislation, which will restrict private employers’ ability to ask about applicants’ criminal backgrounds on employment applications. Signed by the Governor on May 15, 2013 and effective…more

Ban the Box, Criminal Background Checks, Criminal Records, Job Applicants, Public Employers

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Thomas McInerney

California Governor Signs Bill Limiting Attorneys’ Fees for Employers in Wage Cases

California Governor Jerry Brown on August 28, 2013, signed into law a measure limiting the ability of employers to obtain attorneys’ fee awards if they are prevailing defendants in wage disputes. Senate Bill (SB) 462…more

Attorney's Fees, Bad Faith, Employer Liability Issues, Jerry Brown, Minimum Wage

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Edmund J. McKenna

Increase in Florida’s Minimum Wage

In 2004, the state of Florida enacted a constitutional amendment, establishing a state minimum wage. The minimum wage applies to all employees in the state who are covered by the federal minimum wage…more

Minimum Wage, Wages

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Neil V. McKittrick

Significant Changes In The Regulation Of Temporary Staffing Coming To Massachusetts In 2013

In August 2012, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick signed into law a bill that established a series of new legal requirements for temporary staffing agencies and the companies that use their services. The law, called the…more

Staffing Agencies

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Jocelyn A. Merced

Jersey City, New Jersey Enacts Sick Leave Ordinance; Is Newark Next?

On October 21, 2013, Jersey City enacted an ordinance (passed by its City Council on September 25) mandating that all Jersey City businesses provide their employees sick leave—either paid or unpaid (depending upon the employer’s…more

Local Ordinance, Municipalities, Paid Leave, Sick Leave

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John T. Merrell

NLRB Launches Mobile App in Latest Effort to Educate Employees About NLRA

On August 30, 2013, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced the release of a free NLRB mobile app for iPhone and Android users. The app is the latest phase of the NLRB’s continued campaign to educate employees about…more

Employee Rights, Mobile Apps, NLRA, NLRB

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Andrew W. Merrills

Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions For FY 2015 Should Be Filed On March 31, 2014 To Be Received By USCIS On April 1, 2014

The filing period for “new” H-1B petitions to be counted against the annual H-1B quota (the “H-1B cap”) for FY 2015 begins on Tuesday, April 1, 2014. Note that petitions need to be mailed on March 31 to ensure receipt by the…more

Filing Deadlines, H-1B, Immigrants, USCIS, Visas

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Sasha Meschkow

Tempe City Council Broadens Anti-Discrimination Ordinance To Encompass Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, And Transgendered Individuals

On February 27, 2014, by unanimous vote, the Tempe City Council approved a proposal to expand the Tempe City Code’s anti-discrimination ordinance to prohibit discrimination in housing, employment, and public accommodation on the…more

Anti-Discrimination Policies, Gender Identity, Sexual Orientation, Sexual Orientation Discrimination

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Tracy A. Miller

Arizona Supreme Court Limits Employer’s Vicarious Liability For Employee’s Off-Duty, On-Location Assignment Car Accident

On July 9, 2012, the Arizona Supreme Court issued an employer-friendly opinion holding that an employer was not vicariously liable for negligent conduct committed by an employee during an out-of-town assignment, after work…more

Employer Liability Issues, Off-Duty Employees, Respondeat Superior, Vicarious Liability

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Michael D. Mitchell

New Texas Law Limits Negligent Hiring, Supervision Claims Against Employers

On June 14, Governor Rick Perry signed a new law that will preclude most causes of action for negligent hiring or negligent supervision against employers, general contractors, and premises owners. The new law (Texas H.B. 1188)…more

Criminal Background Checks, Criminal Records, Hiring & Firing, Negligent Hiring, New Legislation

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Christopher Moore

How To Calculate Unpaid Overtime, The Sequel: Fifth Circuit Rejects FWW Method In Misclassification Cases

In Black v. SettlePou P.C., the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a district court’s ruling concerning the proper methodology for calculating damages when an employee is misclassified as exempt. In so doing, the Fifth…more

Collective Actions, Damages, FLSA, Misclassification, Unpaid Overtime

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Beth A. Moeller

FLSA Collective Actions—How Your Company Can Avoid Being Targeted

The number of wage and hour lawsuits filed by current and former employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) continues to increase. According to one source, collective actions brought under the FLSA alleging wage and…more

Audits, Class Action, FLSA, Over-Time, Wage and Hour

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Kelly Moffitt

Minnesota Supreme Court Refuses to Expand Exception to Employment-at-Will Doctrine

The Minnesota Supreme Court rang in 2014 with an employer-friendly decision on the at-will employment rule. On January 2, in Dukowitz v. Hannon Security Services (No. A11-1481), the state’s highest court held that the…more

At-Will Employment, Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, Public Policy, Termination

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Steven W. Moore

Major Changes At The EEOC Could Mean Major Liability For Employers

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) investigation and litigation tactics have been a hot topic lately, as the agency recently announced its plan to target more employers in bigger, more costly systemic…more

Disability Discrimination, Discrimination, EEOC, Enforcement, Enforcement Actions

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Karen M. Morinelli

Florida Supreme Court Upholds Legislation Requiring Public Employees To Contribute To Retirement Accounts

In a 4-3 decision in Scott v. Williams, No. SC12-520 (Fla. Jan. 17, 2013), the Florida Supreme Court recently upheld the constitutionality of a 2011 law, Senate Bill 2100, requiring Florida’s public employees to contribute three…more

Breach of Contract, COLA, Collective Bargaining, Public Employees, Retirement

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Marifrances Morrison

Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions For FY 2015 Should Be Filed On March 31, 2014 To Be Received By USCIS On April 1, 2014

The filing period for “new” H-1B petitions to be counted against the annual H-1B quota (the “H-1B cap”) for FY 2015 begins on Tuesday, April 1, 2014. Note that petitions need to be mailed on March 31 to ensure receipt by the…more

Filing Deadlines, H-1B, Immigrants, USCIS, Visas

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Bernhard Mueller

Revised Form I-9 Effective March 8, 2013

A revised Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, the form that must be completed by all employers to verify the employment eligibility of every new hire, will be introduced on March 8, 2013, according to an advance copy…more

Eligibility, Hiring & Firing, I-9

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Sarah J. Murphy

The Guide Dog Days of Summer: Board Affirms Another Micro-Unit After Specialty Healthcare

Since the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued the Specialty Healthcare decision in 2011, unions have been permitted to organize “micro-units” of an employer, such as employees of a department rather than employees of an…more

Employer Liability Issues, NLRB, Specialty Healthcare

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Christopher C. Murray

Fifth Circuit Rejects NLRB's D.R. Horton Decision

In a major win for employers, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, on December 3, 2013, rejected the highly controversial D.R. Horton, Inc. decision from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). …more

Arbitration, Class Action, Collective Actions, D.R. Horton, D.R. Horton v NLRB

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Michael J. Nader

Implied Covenant Of Good Faith And Fair Dealing Saves California Employer’s Arbitration Agreement

Serpa v. California Surety Investigations, Inc., No. B237363 (April 19, 2013): In a recent decision, a California Court of Appeal held that an arbitration agreement contained in an employee handbook was not invalid solely on the…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Attorney's Fees, Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing, Employee Handbooks

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Tibor Nagy, Jr

Tempe City Council Broadens Anti-Discrimination Ordinance To Encompass Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, And Transgendered Individuals

On February 27, 2014, by unanimous vote, the Tempe City Council approved a proposal to expand the Tempe City Code’s anti-discrimination ordinance to prohibit discrimination in housing, employment, and public accommodation on the…more

Anti-Discrimination Policies, Gender Identity, Sexual Orientation, Sexual Orientation Discrimination

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Leigh M. Nason

Sex, Pay, and Retaliation: The White House Weighs In Again

President Obama directed U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez to propose a rule requiring that federal contractors submit summary compensation data to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and issued an executive order…more

DOL, Federal Contractors, Gender-Based Pay Discrimination, OFCCP, Pay Equality Notices

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Christopher Near

OFCCP Clarifies Damages Available to Victims of Discrimination

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is charged with enforcing the affirmative action and non-discrimination obligations of federal contractors and subcontractors…more

Affirmative Action, Anti-Discrimination Policies, Contractors, Discrimination, OFCCP

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Diana J. Nehro

Puerto Rico Bans Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Discrimination in Employment

Last week, on May 29, 2013, Puerto Rico’s governor, Alejandro García Padilla, signed S.B. 238 into law enacting Act No. 22, which prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, both in the…more

Discrimination, Gender Discrimination, Gender Identity, Hiring & Firing, Job Applicants

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Sarah Nichols

San Francisco Mayor Signs Ordinance To “Ban The Box” On Employment Applications

On February 14, 2014, San Francisco Mayor Edwin M. Lee signed San Francisco’s Fair Chance Ordinance, which “bans the box” on employment applications and restricts private employers’ ability to use criminal history information…more

Ban the Box, Employment Application, Job Applicants

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Vicki M. Nielsen

Supreme Court Justices Consider Taxability of Certain Severance Pay During Quality Stores Oral Arguments

Yesterday the Supreme Court of the United States heard oral arguments in United States v. Quality Stores, Inc., a case on appeal from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. A circuit court split had spurred the Court to hear the…more

FICA Taxes, IRC, Oral Argument, Quality Stores, SCOTUS

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Josephine S. Noble

Sixth Circuit Rules Employers Can Avoid Fiascos Like Romney’s “47%” Recording by Banning Secret Recordings in the Workplace

With President Obama’s inauguration next week, I am reminded of the surreptitious recording that played a significant role in the final weeks of his campaign last year—the infamous “47%” recording. Secret recordings can have a…more

Audio Recording, Discrimination, EEOC, Employment Policies, Hiring & Firing

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Tamika Nordstrom

Association Discrimination: The New Wave of Discrimination Claims

It is well-established that employers cannot discriminate against employees due to their age, gender, race, religion, disability, or any other class protected under federal and/or state laws. However, a lesser-known cause of…more

Association Discrimination, Discrimination, Title VII

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Shannon O'Guin

Ways to Help Business Internship Partners Avoid DOL Pitfalls

Many colleges and universities require some kind of practical, hands-on experience as a part of their curriculum. Employers and schools alike place a premium on real world experience that cannot always be gained from sitting in…more

Colleges, DOL, FLSA, Internships, Supervision

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Danielle Ochs

Sorting Laundry: California Court Reaffirms Scope Of Uniform Trade Secrets Act

Angelica Textile Services, Inc. v. Park, No. D062405 (October 15, 2013): A California Court of Appeal recently held that claims of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and unfair competition are not “displaced” or…more

Breach of Contract, Breach of Duty, Fiduciary Duty, Unfair Competition, UTSA

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Miyuki Oshima

Don’t Be Bulldozed by Snow Days: What to Consider Before Docking Pay for Weather-Related Absences

With thanks likely to the polar vortex, states across the nation are experiencing record low temperatures this winter. The bitterly cold winter has caused employees to call off work (or show up late) and employers to voluntarily…more

Employer Liability Issues, FLSA, Severe Weather, Wage and Hour, Weather Policy

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Melissa Osipoff

Second Circuit Holds That New York City Commission On Human Rights’ Procedures Satisfy Constitutional Due Process

Rosu v. City of New York, No. 13-cv-243 (2d Cir. Feb. 7, 2014): Underlying this case, Mircea Rosu filed a complaint with the New York City Commission on Human Rights alleging that his manager and coworkers discriminated against…more

Discrimination, Due Process, NYCHRL, Probable Cause

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Shaun P.Haley

OSHA Ratchets Up Heat-Related Inspections; Expect State Plans Like Nevada To Follow

Under pressure to respond to the risks to employees created by the nationwide heat wave this summer, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently instructed its field enforcement staff, “to expedite…more

Enforcement, OSHA

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Helen A. Palladeno

Summary of the EEOC’s New Strategic Enforcement Plan and What Employers Need to Know

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC or Commission) recently released to the public its draft Strategic Enforcement Plan (SEP or Plan). The SEP will take effect October 1, 2012, and will remain in effect until…more

Anti-Retaliation Provisions, Discrimination, EEOC, Hiring & Firing, Migrant Workers

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Danuta Bembenista Panich

U.S. Supreme Court Again Takes on FLSA Donning and Doffing

Unionized employers whose employees must wear protective equipment may soon receive direction on whether they must pay for time spent donning and doffing the gear. On February 19, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court granted review on…more

Collective Bargaining, Doffing, DOL, Donning, FLSA

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Stephen Parker

USCIS Clarifies Eligibility Requirements For STEM OPT Extension

A recent interim policy memorandum, released by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), clarifies the degree completion requirements for the 17-month extension of Optional Practical Training (OPT) available to F-1…more

F-1, Immigrants, STEM, Students, USCIS

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Elizabeth Partlow

Time-Barred Claim . . . Or Is It? Supreme Court Agrees To Review Fourth Circuit State Statute of Repose Case

As reported on the Ogletree Deakins Environmental Law blog in July of 2013, a divided panel of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals held that the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERLCA or…more

CERCLA, Contamination, Environmental Claims, Environmental Liability, Environmental Policies

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Christopher Pastore

Nevada Latest State To Limit Employer Access To Employee Social Media Accounts

Nevada has become the eleventh state in the nation to enact a law restricting employer access to employee social media accounts. Beginning October 1, 2013, it will be illegal for Nevada employers to require or request that an…more

Adverse Employment Action, Discrimination, Employee Rights, Passwords, Social Media

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Vicki Patterson

Sixth Circuit Rules for Employers in FLSA Case

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed judgment for the employer in a collective action brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) by 91 current and former special investigators (SIs) employed by Nationwide…more

Collective Actions, DOL, FLSA, Over-Time, Special Investigators

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James Paul

What Do Undocumented Workers, Al Capone, and the Jerusalem Cafe Have in Common?

The answer is “nothing really,” but the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals successfully searched Al Capone’s vault to unearth the comparison in its recent opinion in Lucas v. Jerusalem Cafe, LLC…more

Employee Rights, FLSA, Full-Time Employees, Minimum Wage, NLRA

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J. Carin Pendergraft

Alabama’s New “Guns In The Parking Lot” Law Takes Effect On August 1, 2013

On August 1, 2013, Alabama laws regarding firearms will change to permit employees to bring guns to the parking lots of their workplaces, if certain conditions are met…more

Adverse Employment Action, Concealed Carry Permit, Firearms, Gun Laws, Guns-in-Trunks Legislation

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Eric Penkert

The Waiting is the Hardest Part: Final Regulations on the PPACA’s 90-Day Waiting Period Released

On February 24, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) jointly released…more

Affordable Care Act, DOL, EBSA, Employer Group Health Plans, Health Insurance

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James Pennington

Alabama’s New “Guns In The Parking Lot” Law Takes Effect On August 1, 2013

On August 1, 2013, Alabama laws regarding firearms will change to permit employees to bring guns to the parking lots of their workplaces, if certain conditions are met…more

Adverse Employment Action, Concealed Carry Permit, Firearms, Gun Laws, Guns-in-Trunks Legislation

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Cristina Perez

OFCCP Issues NEW Compensation Directive and Rescinds Compensation Standards and Voluntary Guidelines

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) announced today that effective February 28, 2013, it has rescinded the 2006 Compensation Standards (Standards) and Voluntary Guidelines. In the Notice of Final…more

Compensation Standards, Investigations, OFCCP, Title VII, Wages

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Cristina Pérez

Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis Announces Her Resignation

U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Hilda L. Solis announced her resignation in a letter to Department of Labor (DOL) employees on January 9, 2013. Just 12 days before the ceremonial swearing-in of President Barack Obama for a…more

Administrative Appointments, Administrative Resignation, Barack Obama, DOL

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Grant D. Petersen

Nothing Personal: How to be Smart About Your BYOD Workplace Policy (And Why It Matters!)

You might think people are making more out of BYOD than it deserves, that it is a relatively benign issue. Alas, you’d be wrong…more

Bring Your Own Device, Confidential Information, FLSA, Legal Perspectives, Wage and Hour

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Carllene M. Placide

Seattle Paid Sick And Safe Leave Ordinance—Employers With Employees Working In Seattle, Are You Ready For The New Seattle Ordinance?

Effective September 1, 2012, most private employers that have employees working within the city of Seattle, Washington will be required to provide such employees specific amounts of paid leave for use for personal illness,…more

Medical Leave, Paid Leave, Safe Leave

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Steven F. Pockrass

Avoiding Mistletoe Mishaps, Part I: Seven Employment Topics To Consider When Hiring Seasonal Workers

As 2013 comes to an end, we will consider a number of issues that employers might be facing at the end of the year. In this blog series, we will cover topics such as seasonal hiring, religious discrimination claims stemming from…more

At-Will Employment, Discrimination, Employer Liability Issues, FLSA, Holiday Parties

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Carol Poplawski

Illinois Supreme Court’s Refusal To Review Restrictive Covenant Decision Leaves Employers With Uncertainty

The Illinois Supreme Court’s recent refusal to review the Illinois Appellate Court’s controversial decision in Fifield v. Premier Dealer Services, Inc., No. 1-12-0327, 2013 IL App (1st) 120327 (Jun. 24, 2013) leaves employers…more

Consideration, Restrictive Covenants

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Shontell Powell

OSHA Signals an Increased Focus on Hospital Industry

On January 15, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) launched a new, online compliance assistance tool for hospitals called, “Worker Safety in Hospitals: Caring for our…more

DOL, Healthcare, Healthcare Professionals, Hospitals, OSHA

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Bonnie Puckett

Independent Contractor or Employee: How Some Countries Differ

In this series of blog posts, we have examined the use of independent-contractor relationships by multinational organizations. In our last three posts, we identified issues for global entities that are considering using…more

Classification, Full-Time Employees, Independent Contractors, International Labor Laws

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Brooke Purcell

Will Automatic Gratuities at Restaurants Be a Thing of the Past?

Automatic gratuities for large parties are commonplace in many restaurants, bars, and hotels throughout the country. However, as of January 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) now classifies these automatic gratuities as…more

IRS, Payroll Taxes, Restaurant Industry, Tips

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David Raizman

Five New ADA Pool Lift Lawsuits Filed

Five new lawsuits were recently filed against hotels under the recently-effective pool lift regulation…more

Accessibility Rules, ADA, Disability Access Claims, Hotels, Swimming Pools

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Soña Ramirez

Complying With Wage Garnishments in Texas—What You Need to Know

When you have tens of thousands of employees, it is very likely that your payroll and human resources (HR) departments receive wage garnishment orders for employees every week. Texas law is restrictive in this area, and it is…more

Human Resources Professionals, Payroll Taxes, Wage and Hour, Wage Garnishment

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A. Sonu Ray

Nation’s Largest Background Check Agencies Will No Longer Automatically Disqualify New York Job Applicants Based On Criminal Convictions

On March 13, 2014, New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced agreements with four of the nation’s largest background check agencies whereby they will not, on behalf of their clients, issue automatic rejection…more

Background Checks, Ban the Box, Criminal Background Checks

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Michael Ray

Supreme Court Clarifies the Scope of the “Changing Clothes” Exception to the FLSA for Union Employers

On January 27, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its opinion in Sandifer v. United States Steel Corp., No. 12-417, upholding judgment for the employer under section 203(o) of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)…more

Collective Bargaining, FLSA, Sandifer v U.S. Steel Corp, SCOTUS, Unions

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Ebony A. Reid

Seventh Circuit Holds that the ADA Mandates Reassignment of Disabled Employees to Vacant Positions

Overruling its own precedent, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (which covers Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin) recently held that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires employers to reassign disabled…more

ADA, Disability, Discrimination, EEOC, Reasonable Accommodation

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P. Kramer Rice

Major League Baseball Volunteers Are not Employees Under the FLSA

On March 26, 2014, the District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed John Chen’s proposed Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) collective action against Major League Baseball (MLB) alleging that MLB had failed to pay…more

Employee Rights, FLSA, MLB, Volunteers

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Stephen A. Riga

At Year End, IRS Issues Guidance On Cafeteria Plan Transitional Rules For Windsor

Finally, some guidance on mid-year cafeteria plan changes that many employers have already permitted in the wake of United States v. Windsor. On December 16, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Notice 2014-1, which…more

Cafeteria Plans, Dependent Care, DOMA, Flexible Spending Accounts, Health Savings Accounts

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Kathryn Roberts

Federal Judge Approves Contractual Limitation On Time To Bring Employment Claims Under Oregon Law

A federal court in Oregon recently ruled that employment agreements may impose a reasonable limitation on the time period in which an employee may bring statutory and common law claims against his or her employer, even when that…more

Employee Benefits, Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, Employment Contract, Statute of Limitations

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Alfred B. Robinson, Jr.

President Signs Executive Order on Minimum Wage Increase

On Wednesday, February 12, President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 for federal contract workers. The president issued the Executive Order, in part, based upon the Federal Property and…more

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Robert Roginson

California Supreme Court Follows Concepcion But Allows Courts To Strike Down Unconscionable Arbitration Agreements

Sonic-Calabasas A, Inc. v. Moreno, No. S174475, (October 17, 2013): As expected following the recent decision by the Supreme Court of the United States interpreting the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA), the California Supreme Court…more

American Express v Italian Colors Restaurant, Arbitration, AT&T Mobility v Concepcion, DOL, Federal Arbitration Act

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Taylor Rollinson

New Law on the Horizon for Illinois Employers Settling Tort Claims

On January 1, 2014, a new section of the Civil Practice Law, “Settlement of claims; payment” (735 ILCS § 5/2-2301), will take effect. The Illinois legislature passed the law in an effort to expedite the payment process in…more

Defamation, Release Agreements, Retaliation, Settlement, Tortious Interference

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David Rosner

Same-Sex Marriages and Windsor: IRS Issues Notice on Retirement Plan Amendments and Retroactivity

Employers and participants alike have been anxiously waiting for further guidance from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on how marriages of same-sex couples will be treated for purposes of qualified retirement plans. On April…more

amendment, Employee Rights, Employer Mandates, IRS, Retirement Plan

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Jason A. Rothman

Love Is Love, But in Light of DOMA Employers Should Adjust Health, Retirement, and Tax Planning

Now that they Supreme Court has ruled, in a common refrain heard on Twitter today, that love is love is love, what does this actually mean going forward? And, specifically, we asked attorneys writing on JD Supra to tell us what…more

Discrimination, DOMA, Employee Benefits, ERISA, FMLA

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Jay Ruby

Sweeping Immigration Reform Bill Passes Senate

On June 27, 2013, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 (S. 744) passed the Senate by a vote of 68 to 32…more

Immigration Reform, New Legislation

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Jennifer Rusie

Much Ado About Payroll Cards

In my last blog post, “To Fee or Not to Fee—The Pros and Cons of Payroll Cards,” I discussed the growing popularity of payroll cards and several U.S. senators’ plea for guidance on this burgeoning pay practice. Perhaps in…more

CFPB, Disclosure Requirements, EFTA, Financial Statements, Payroll Cards

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William Rutchow

Tennessee Employers Beware—Make Sure You Are Paying Your Employees On Time

Tennessee requires employers to comply with several requirements when it comes to paying employees their wages. Most of these requirements are set out in the Tennessee wage payment statute. Employers are required to maintain…more

Employer Liability Issues, Employer Mandates, Notice Requirements, Payment Schedules, Wages

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Jennifer Rygiel-Boyd

FMLA Policy In Handbook Does Not Satisfy Individualized Notice Requirements Of FMLA, New Jersey District Court Holds

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) requires that employers provide both general notice to their employees of their rights under the FMLA and individualized notice to employees requesting or inquiring about leave. In Young…more

FMLA, FMLA Guidebook, Notice Requirements

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Richard L. Samson

Fragmented Workforces: Specialty Healthcare And The Advent Of “Micro-Units”

The National Labor Relations Board recently made it easier for unions to win representation elections by allowing unions to fragment workforces and cherry-pick the unit of employees most likely to support unionization. On March…more

Decision-Making Process, Multiple Bargaining Units, NLRB, Specialty Healthcare, Unions

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Robert A. Sar

Fourth Circuit Approves “Exempt” Classification of CEO’s Secretary

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that the Fair Labor Standards Act’s administrative employee exemption properly applied to a Chief Executive Officer’s (CEO) secretary. Altemus v. Fed. Realty Inv. Trust, 2012…more

Administrative Employee Exemption, Exemptions, FLSA

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Joshua J. Sarner

New Connecticut Supreme Court Decision Clarifies Application Of The Connecticut Family And Medical Leave Act

On September 25, 2012, the Connecticut Supreme Court held in Velez v. Comm’r of Labor, 306 Conn. 475 (Conn. 2012) that the Connecticut Family and Medical Leave Act (CFMLA) applies only to employers with 75 or more employees…more

FMLA

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Diane M. Saunders

Massachusetts Federal Court Holds That Websites Can Be Places Of Public Accommodation For Purposes Of The ADA

In National Association for the Deaf v. Netflix, Inc., the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts held that Netflix’s Internet video-streaming service, known as “Watch Instantly,” constitutes a place of public…more

ADA, Disability, Disability Access Claims, Discrimination, Internet

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Tobias E. Schlueter

Illinois Supreme Court’s Refusal To Review Restrictive Covenant Decision Leaves Employers With Uncertainty

The Illinois Supreme Court’s recent refusal to review the Illinois Appellate Court’s controversial decision in Fifield v. Premier Dealer Services, Inc., No. 1-12-0327, 2013 IL App (1st) 120327 (Jun. 24, 2013) leaves employers…more

Consideration, Restrictive Covenants

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Mark Schmidtke

Rochow v. LINA: Can it Really be True that ERISA Benefit Claimants Can Recover Millions of Dollars in Disgorged Profits?

The federal district court decision in Rochow v. Life Insurance Company of North America, No. 04-73628 (March 23, 2012) went unnoticed by most ERISA practitioners after it was issued in 2012, even though the court awarded…more

Disgorgement, Employee Benefits, ERISA

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Margaret S. Scholz

Fourth Circuit Approves “Exempt” Classification of CEO’s Secretary

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that the Fair Labor Standards Act’s administrative employee exemption properly applied to a Chief Executive Officer’s (CEO) secretary. Altemus v. Fed. Realty Inv. Trust, 2012…more

Administrative Employee Exemption, Exemptions, FLSA

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Ashley Scott

Boys Will Be Boys? Dolphins Face the Tough Question of Where Locker Room Behavior Ends and Workplace Harassment Begins

There is no crying in football, but is there harassment? The Miami Dolphins, a National Football League (NFL) franchise, faces this question in the wake of a highly-publicized bullying scandal involving the Dolphins’ 24-year-old…more

Athletes, Bullying, Harassment, Hazing, NFL

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Harry Secaras

$15 Minimum Wage in Chicago on March Ballot

The Chicago Board of Election Commissioners recently confirmed that in March of 2014 some Chicago residents will vote on a nonbinding ballot referendum on the following question: “Shall the city of Chicago require a minimum wage…more

Ballot Measures, Minimum Wage

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Robert Seiger

NFL Suspends Player for Violent Helmet Swing Towards an Opposing Player

Between the whistles of play, professional football is an arguably violent game…more

Athletes, Bodily Injury, NFL, Suspensions & Debarments

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Evan J. Shenkman

Bill Protects Employees Impacted By Emergency Weather Conditions

On March 17, 2014, a bill (S1717) was introduced that would prohibit an employer from taking adverse action against an employee because he or she is not working due to a declared state of emergency (by the Governor or municipal…more

Adverse Employment Action, Employee Rights, Severe Weather

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Michael Shetterly

New FMLA Poster Must Be Up By March 8

If you haven’t done it already, you will want to display the new Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) poster by March 8, 2013. …more

DOL, Flight Crews, FMLA, Military Service Members, Notice Requirements

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Hal Shillingstad

Hurricane Sandy and Crisis Management

Hurricane Sandy is leaving a wake of destruction in major cities across the East Coast that can have a devastating effect on your business, management, employees, and customers…more

Hurricane Sandy

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Nonnie Shivers

Tempe City Council Broadens Anti-Discrimination Ordinance To Encompass Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, And Transgendered Individuals

On February 27, 2014, by unanimous vote, the Tempe City Council approved a proposal to expand the Tempe City Code’s anti-discrimination ordinance to prohibit discrimination in housing, employment, and public accommodation on the…more

Anti-Discrimination Policies, Gender Identity, Sexual Orientation, Sexual Orientation Discrimination

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Kenneth Siepman

The Employment Law Authority - May/June 2013

I This Issue: - “Facebook Firing” Ruling Favors Employer - Workplace Strategies Hits New Highs - EEOC Issues Updated Guidance For Specific Disabilities - Genetic Discrimination Suit Settles - Third Circuit Sides…more

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Rebecca L. Sigmund

New U.S.-Russia Visa Agreement Facilitates Travel For Business and Tourism

Under the terms of an agreement simplifying the U.S.-Russia bilateral visa program, American and Russian travelers for business or tourism are now eligible to receive three-year, multiple-entry visas authorizing stays for up to…more

Bilateral Visa Program, Business Visas, Visas

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James R. Silvers

San Francisco Mayor Signs Ordinance To “Ban The Box” On Employment Applications

On February 14, 2014, San Francisco Mayor Edwin M. Lee signed San Francisco’s Fair Chance Ordinance, which “bans the box” on employment applications and restricts private employers’ ability to use criminal history information…more

Ban the Box, Employment Application, Job Applicants

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Andrew Silvia

Rhode Island Court Considers Harassment and Discrimination Claims Involving Alleged Harasser and Victim of the Same Sex

The U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island recently considered the application of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Rhode Island Fair Employment Practices Act (FEPA) in the context of an alleged…more

Civil Rights Act, Discrimination, EEOC, Harassment, Title VII

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Spencer Skeen

California Supreme Court Grants Review in Brown

The impact of the California Court of Appeal’s recent opinion in Brown v. Superior Court, 216 Cal. App. 4th 1302 (Cal. Ct. App. 2013) is on hold, at least for now. Last week, the California Supreme Court indicated it would grant…more

Arbitration, AT&T Mobility v Concepcion, Federal Arbitration Act, SCOTUS

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Stephen H. Smalley

Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions For FY 2015 Should Be Filed On March 31, 2014 To Be Received By USCIS On April 1, 2014

The filing period for “new” H-1B petitions to be counted against the annual H-1B quota (the “H-1B cap”) for FY 2015 begins on Tuesday, April 1, 2014. Note that petitions need to be mailed on March 31 to ensure receipt by the…more

Filing Deadlines, H-1B, Immigrants, USCIS, Visas

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Allyson M. Smith

New Jersey DOL Clarifies Overtime Exemption For Employees Of Common Carriers Of Passengers By Motor Bus

Under current state law, employees of a common carrier of passengers by motor bus are exempt from overtime. N.J.S.A. 34:11-56a4. However, the term “common carrier of passengers by motor bus” was never defined in the regulations,…more

Common Carriers, Department of Labor & Industry, Exempt-Employees, Over-Time

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Larry Smith

Which Arbitration Agreement Clauses Will Texas Courts Find Unconscionable?

In recent years, courts have consistently supported employers’ use of arbitration agreements in employment settings. During the last few terms, the Supreme Court of the United States has issued several decisions, such as…more

American Express v Italian Colors Restaurant, Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, AT&T Mobility v Concepcion, Halliburton

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Samantha Smith

Alabama’s New “Guns In The Parking Lot” Law Takes Effect On August 1, 2013

On August 1, 2013, Alabama laws regarding firearms will change to permit employees to bring guns to the parking lots of their workplaces, if certain conditions are met…more

Adverse Employment Action, Concealed Carry Permit, Firearms, Gun Laws, Guns-in-Trunks Legislation

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Stephanie Smithey

IRS Announces COLA Increases for Dollar Limitations on Benefits and Contributions

On October 31, 2013 the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced the cost-of-living adjustments impacting tax-qualified pension plans for 2014. Increases were not made to the individual limits on deferrals and catch-up…more

COLA, Employee Benefits, Employer Contributions, IRS, Pensions

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Thomas Smock

The Employment Law Authority - July/August 2013

In This Issue: - Supreme Court Issues Two Key Title VII Rulings - Ogletree Deakins Launches New Fall Seminar - Are Your HIPAA Privacy Policies Up To Date - OFCCP Clarifies Damages For Victims Of Bias - The…more

Bias, Confirmation Proceedings, Discrimination, EEOC, Harassment

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Cheryl M. Stanton

Governor Cuomo Signs Law Loosening Strict Interpretation Of Unlawful Deductions From Wages

On September 8, 2012, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a much-anticipated law that amends New York Labor Law § 193 by expanding the scope of permissible deductions from an employee’s wages. The new law, which will take effect on…more

Wage Deductions, Wages

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Timothy J. Stanton

What Does The ACA Shared Responsibility Final Rule Mean To Large Employers?

As many small employers rejoice over a delayed effective date, large employers should be rolling up their sleeves to adapt their evolving shared responsibility compliance strategies for 2015 to a new final rule from the U.S…more

Affordable Care Act, Employee Benefits, Employer Mandates, Healthcare, IRS

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Natalie M. Stevens

Positive Legislative Change In Ohio—Reduced Statute Of Limitations For Actions Based On Written Contracts

Ohio historically had one of the longest statutes of limitations for written contracts—weighing in at 15 years. However, the limitations period was recently reduced from 15 years to 8 years…more

Statute of Limitations

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Sarai Bryant Stewart

Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions For FY 2015 Should Be Filed On March 31, 2014 To Be Received By USCIS On April 1, 2014

The filing period for “new” H-1B petitions to be counted against the annual H-1B quota (the “H-1B cap”) for FY 2015 begins on Tuesday, April 1, 2014. Note that petitions need to be mailed on March 31 to ensure receipt by the…more

Filing Deadlines, H-1B, Immigrants, USCIS, Visas

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Matthew Straub

Subcontractor Loses Delay Claim for Delays Occurring Before Execution of Subcontract

Both an Illinois circuit and appellate court had little sympathy for a subcontractor that suffered significant delays before executing a subcontract, which failed to allow for compensation for the prior delays. Asset Recovery…more

Construction Contracts, General Contractors, No-Damages-For-Delay Provisions, Subcontractors, Subcontracts

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John G. Stretton

In Connecticut, Global Release “Non-Binding” With Respect To Workers’ Compensation Claims Until Approved By Commissioner

In a recent decision, the Connecticut Supreme Court gave teeth to the provisions of Connecticut General Statute § 31-296 of the Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Act—which provide a mechanism through which employers and…more

Release Agreements, Workplace Injury

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Eric Stuart

Shame On Who? Responding to Union Corporate Campaigns, Protests, and Bannering

The recent retail and fast food industry protests regarding demands for a “living wage” remind us that corporate campaigns by unions are a form of corporate warfare. They seek to inflict upon employers a “death from a thousand…more

NLRA, NLRB, Unions

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Mark Stubley

The Employment Law Authority - November/December 2013

In This Issue: - Harassment. Are your executive training programs effective? - State Round-Up. Learn about the latest employment law news in your state - Unions. Harold Coxson and Baker Wyche discuss the new…more

ADA, Compliance, Employer Liability Issues, FMLA, Harassment

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Eric Su

New York State Passes Worker Misclassification Law For Commercial Transportation Industry

On January 10, 2014, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the New York State Commercial Goods Transportation Industry Fair Play Act (the Act), which becomes effective on March 11, 2014. As with the Construction…more

DOL, Employer Liability Issues, Misclassification

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Gustavo Suarez

EEOC and FTC Issue Joint Publications on Background Checks

On March 10, 2014, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) jointly released two pamphlets on the use of background checks in the workplace: (a) one directed at employers and…more

Background Checks, Criminal Background Checks, EEOC, FTC

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Min Suh

Real Husband of New Jersey Faces Deportation

The cast of The Real Housewives of New Jersey signed up to have their lives televised, their dirty laundry aired, and their family dramas battled out for its faithful audience since the series premiered in 2009…more

Deportation, Family Members, Immigrants

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Daniel Sulton

Employer “Pay or Play” Mandate Final Regulations Issued—Major Impact on Educational Institutions

Like all other employers across the country, educational institutions have been awaiting final rules to determine their compliance strategy for the Affordable Care Act’s Employer Shared Responsibility provisions (better known as…more

Affordable Care Act, Delays, Employee Benefits, Employer Mandates, Healthcare

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Caroline Tang

Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions for FY 2015 Should Be Filed with USCIS on March 31, 2014

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting new H-1B petitions to be counted toward the annual H-1B quota (the “H-1B cap”) for fiscal year (FY) 2015 on Tuesday, April 1, 2014. USCIS will not accept…more

Filing Deadlines, H-1B, Immigrants, USCIS, Visas

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Justin Tarka

U.K. Law for the U.S. Employer, Part III: Withholding Obligations and Immigration

The final post in this three-part series on U.K. employment laws covers the withholding and immigration obligations facing U.K. employers…more

Compliance, Immigrants, UK, Visas, Withholding Requirements

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Guilene F. Theodore

Arbitration Agreement Awarding Fees To Prevailing Party In FLSA Case Held Not Enforceable By Florida’s Second DCA

Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal recently held that an arbitration agreement was unenforceable in the context of a claim brought under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) when the agreement provides for an award…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Attorney's Fees, FLSA, Void and Unenforceable

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Charles Thompson, IV

Sweeping Immigration Reform Bill Passes Senate

On June 27, 2013, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 (S. 744) passed the Senate by a vote of 68 to 32…more

Immigration Reform, New Legislation

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Todd Timmons

NLRB Orders Reinstatement of Employees Fired Over Discussion on Facebook

In Hispanics United of Buffalo, Inc., 359 NLRB No. 37 (Dec. 14, 2012), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) found that an employer violated section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by firing five employees…more

Anti-Harassment Policies, Facebook, Hiring & Firing, Hispanics United of Buffalo, NLRA

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Todd Torres

Employer Failed to Establish Tortious Interference by Current Employees Who Were Secretly Operating a Competing Business

An employer failed to show that its former employees tortiously interfered with its current and prospective customers, even though they had been secretly operating a competing business while working for the employer. In deciding…more

Non-Compete Agreements, Tortious Interference, Unfair Competition

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Tracy Truesdale

Avoiding Mistletoe Mishaps, Part VII: Bonuses Have You Saying “What the Dickens?” Lessons To Learn From Ebenezer Scrooge

As 2013 comes to an end, we have been considering a number of workplace issues that employers might face at the end of the year and the beginning of the holiday season. Part seven of our series discusses the wage and hour and…more

Bonuses, Employer Liability Issues, IRS, Tax Liability, Wage and Hour

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Jessica D. Tsuda

Colorado Legislative Wrap-Up

The 2013 Colorado legislative session resulted in three new laws that are significant for employers…more

Credit Reports, Damages, Discrimination, Hiring & Firing, Job Applicants

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Daniel Turner

Coyote Ugly Bouncers Join the Tip-Pool Dance

A federal judge in the Middle District of Tennessee recently held that bouncers (sometimes referred to as “security guards”) at Coyote Ugly Saloons were properly permitted to participate in tip pools with bartenders, barbacks,…more

Restaurant Industry, Tip-Pooling, Tips

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L. Evan Van Gorder

Deadline for Philadelphia Employers to Post New Notice of Rights for Pregnant Employees is Approaching

This Sunday, April 20, marks the deadline by which Philadelphia employers must provide their employees with written notice of a recent amendment to Philadelphia’s Fair Practices Ordinance. The amendment provides additional…more

Employee Rights, Employer Liability Issues, Employer Mandates, Pregnancy, Pregnancy Discrimination

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Amanda Van Wieren

Making the Case for Employee Engagement: A Hard Numbers Approach

Are your employees engaged or are they transactional? Do you believe that employee engagement has a substantial impact on your bottom line? If so, what are you doing to increase employee engagement? In a 2008 study, over…more

Best Management Practices, Law Practice Management, ROI, Young Lawyers

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Danielle Vanderzanden

MA Fair Share Contribution, HIRD Repealed In FY2014 Budget

Governor Deval Patrick recently approved the Commonwealth’s 2014 fiscal year budget, which includes provisions repealing both the Fair Share Contribution (FSC) and the Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure (HIRD) form…more

Employer Group Health Plans, Fair Share Contribution, Health Insurance, Pay or Play, Shared Responsibility Rule

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Timothy G. Verrall

New Opportunities For In-Plan Roth Rollovers

In furtherance of Section 902 of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA), the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued Notice 2013-74 updating prior IRS guidance regarding so-called “in-plan” Roth conversions under…more

401k, American Taxpayer Relief Act, IRA Rollovers, IRS, Retirement Plan

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Alicia Voltmer

What Happens in Vegas . . . May Be Protected FMLA Leave

On January 28, 2014, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with a district court and found that an employee’s trip to Las Vegas with her terminally-ill mother qualified as leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act…more

Caregivers, Employee Rights, Family Members, FMLA

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Leslie Wallis

How to Protect Your Summary Judgment Win: Employer’s Victory Reversed in Age Bias Case

Motions for summary judgment are among the most important—and efficient—devices for defeating a discrimination suit brought by an employee against an employer. If successful, these motions serve to narrow issues to be litigated,…more

ADEA, Age Discrimination, Corporate Counsel, Litigation Strategies

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Jody Ward-Rannow

Ban on Hand-Held Cell Phone Use for Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers—What Employers Should Know

As the number of smartphones sold in the United States and worldwide overtakes sales of so-called ordinary cells phones, more Americans are using these devices while driving…more

Cell Phones, Commercial Driving Licenses, FMCSA, New Regulations, Penalties

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Ryan T. Warden

Employer’s Handbook Disclaimer Renders Agreement To Arbitrate Unenforceable, New Jersey District Court Holds

Employee handbooks typically contain an overview of company history, a set of employment policies and general guidance, and a clear and prominent disclaimer that nothing in the handbook creates a contract of employment between…more

Arbitration, Arbitration Agreements, Employee Handbooks, Void and Unenforceable

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Aaron Warshaw

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio Unveils His First State Of The City Address And Budget

On February 10, 2014, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio gave his first State of the City address and, shortly thereafter, presented his first budget for consideration by the New York City Council. Although there were few…more

Employee Rights, Municipalities, Prevailing Wages, Sick Leave

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Thomas L. Watson, II

The Fifth Circuit Giveth and Then Taketh Away: Another Perspective on Fluctuating Workweeks in Overtime Cases

In the course of two months, two separate Fifth Circuit panels have issued decisions that call into question the application of the fluctuating workweek (FWW) method in suits for unpaid overtime based on misclassification. In…more

Employee Rights, Fluctuating Workweek, Unpaid Overtime, Wage and Hour, Wages

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Keith Watts

3 Legal Mistakes Hiring Managers Make In the Employment Process

In your experience, what's the one legal mistake hiring managers always (inadvertently) make? That's the question we asked labor and employment attorneys writing on JD Supra - and here is what we heard back..…more

Background Checks, Hiring & Firing, Legal Perspectives

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Ashley A. Wenger

Federal Court in Minnesota Provides Guidance on Non-Injury Retaliation Claims Under FRSA

Granting complete summary judgment to BNSF Railway Co., Chief Judge Michael Davis of the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota interpreted and provided the railroad industry with guidance pertaining to the parameters…more

Federal Railroad Safety Act, Railways, Retaliation, Summary Judgment

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C. John Wentzell, Jr.

New Final Treasury Regulations Clarify Rules For Mid-Year Amendments To Safe Harbor 401(k) Plans

On November 14, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued final regulations, which provide guidance on permitted mid-year reductions or suspensions of safe harbor nonelective contributions. The final regulations also…more

401k, Employer Contributions, IRS, Safe Harbors, U.S. Treasury

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Karen K. West

D.C. Circuit Rejects Board’s Determination that Medco Violated the National Labor Relations Act

On Friday, December 14, 2012, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit set aside the determination of the National Labor Relations Board (Board) that Medco Health Solutions of Las Vegas, Inc. (Medco) violated the National…more

NLRA, NLRB, Protected Concerted Activity

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Michelle P. Wimes

Overcoming Diversity Challenges — Interview With Director Of Professional Development & Inclusion Michelle Wimes

Michelle P. Wimes, Esq. is the Director of Professional Development & Inclusion at Ogletree Deakins. She leads the firm’s efforts to attract, develop, and advance diverse attorneys in the firm’s 45 offices across the United…more

Diversity, Professional Development

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Cole A. Wist

MSHA/OSHA Report - August 2012

In This Issue: Safety and Health Enforcement Developments: - MSHA Update - OSHA Update ..OSHA's Oil & Gas Flame Resistant Clothing Memo Held to Be Improper Rulemaking ..Final Electric Power Transmission and…more

Electricity, Mining, MSHA, Oil & Gas, OSHA

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Charlotte Wolfe

Employers Beware: Anything Short of a Robust Attempt to Engage in Interactive Process Might Preclude Summary Judgment

Several recent cases in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals remind employers that their obligation to engage in the interactive process is an increasingly onerous one. First, in Keith v. County of Oakland, No. 11-2276 (6th Cir…more

ADA, Disability, Disability Discrimination, Discrimination, Hiring & Firing

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Stephen R. Woods

Corrected Forms from Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

As discussed in an earlier blog post, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) — which now has the responsibility of enforcing the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), a role previously held by the Federal Trade…more

Background Checks, CFPB, FCRA, Notice Requirements, Summary of Rights

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Mary E. Wright

Litigating Age Claims in California: Not Every Settlement Agreement Requires OWBPA Consideration and Revocation Periods

The Facts - I represent a national company with operations in California. A former employee recently filed a lawsuit against them in a California state court. After negotiating with opposing counsel, the parties entered…more

ADEA, Age Discrimination, FEHA, OWBPA

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Madison Baker Wyche, III

The Employment Law Authority - November/December 2013

In This Issue: - Harassment. Are your executive training programs effective? - State Round-Up. Learn about the latest employment law news in your state - Unions. Harold Coxson and Baker Wyche discuss the new…more

ADA, Compliance, Employer Liability Issues, FMLA, Harassment

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Stephen C. Yohay

The Lion Bite Case Sleeps in Nevada, But It’s a Whale of a Story

The tragic death of an orca (commonly called killer whales) trainer at SeaWorld of Florida in 2010 has stimulated much debate on whether direct contact between wild animals and humans should be permitted in entertainment…more

Compliance, DOL, Employer Liability Issues, OSHA

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Marc L. Zaken

In Connecticut, Global Release “Non-Binding” With Respect To Workers’ Compensation Claims Until Approved By Commissioner

In a recent decision, the Connecticut Supreme Court gave teeth to the provisions of Connecticut General Statute § 31-296 of the Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Act—which provide a mechanism through which employers and…more

Release Agreements, Workplace Injury

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