Employee Releases

News & Analysis as of

SEC Enforcement Expands Scope of Prohibited Provisions in Employment-Related Agreements

Summary - The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced its second significant enforcement action against an employer based on confidentiality and release provisions that the SEC asserts will discourage...more

Risky Business: Using Old Employee Release Forms May Leave You Vulnerable

An employer faces many risks when it terminates an employee, including potential claims of discrimination. Having the employee sign a separation agreement that includes a release of claims in return for payment to which the...more

NLRB Says Agreement's Failure to Advise Employee of Right to File Claims with Board Violates Federal Labor Law

Over the past several years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has sued several employers, claiming that their failure to explicitly advise employees that releases provided in conjunction with severance benefits...more

North Carolina Federal Court Says State Wage Payment Claims Cannot Be Waived Through Private Release

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals (which includes North Carolina and South Carolina) is among the minority of federal appellate circuits that restricts the ability of employers and employees to release claims for unpaid...more

Mitigating FCA Whistleblower Risk When Employees Leave

Over the past decade, efforts to enforce health care fraud regulations have been bolstered significantly with increased government funding and a dramatic increase in whistleblower claims filed under the False Claims Act’s qui...more

What GCs Need to Know About Settling Employment Claims

As we noted in a recent post on another topic, most of the lawyers we know who serve as general counsel are stretched pretty thin. It’s just not possible for them to become expert in all the areas of law they encounter....more

Downsizing and Firing Employees in California

Most companies will eventually face the unpleasant task of terminating an employee or group of employees. When they do, it’s critical that they follow best practices and comply with applicable laws for many reasons, ranging...more

EEOC Must Conciliate, But Still Few Answers Regarding Routine Separation Agreement Provisions

In February 2014, the EEOC sent waves through employer communities when it filed a lawsuit against a national retail pharmacy contending some of the company’s separation agreement provisions — which many considered “standard”...more

Don't Be a Punchline in a B-Horror Movie: When Entering into Settlement Agreements, Make Sure the Claims are Really Dead and...

(Spoiler alert) The 1958 cult classic “The Blob”, starring a 28-year-old Steve McQueen, ends with the villainous mass incapacitated, frozen, and dropped into the Arctic Ocean. It seems that humanity is saved. However, just...more

Employee Separation Agreements – A Refresher

There is one conversation I have with my clients who are employers more frequently than any other. It’s the one that begins, “We’ve decided to let so-and-so go. Do we have to have an agreement of some kind?” Here is what you...more

Employment Law - September 2015

From the California Legislature: New Employment Laws, Bills Set for Signature: Why it matters - The California Legislature has been busy with employment-related bills, passing measures to provide additional...more

Federal Court Stops the EEOC’s Assault on CVS’s Severance Agreement

A federal court has tossed the EEOC’s controversial lawsuit against CVS seeking to invalidate its severance agreements. While the EEOC still has a similar lawsuit pending against another company in Colorado, employers can...more

Severance Agreements Under Attack by the EEOC

Two recent lawsuits filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) underscore the federal agency’s intent to continue, and even expand, its attack on severance agreements. Generally, a severance agreement offers...more

EEOC Takes Aim at Employee Releases That Bar Assisting Others With Their Own EEOC Charges

Employers have routinely asked employees who sign separation or settlement agreements to agree that they will not encourage or assist other employees in filing lawsuits or charges, subject to the caveat that the employee may...more

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