Employer Liability Issues

News & Analysis as of

Employees Paid on a Commission Basis Must Be Paid a Separate Minimum Wage for Rest Periods

Employers who pay employees commissions should evaluate their compensation schemes to ensure compliance with California law in light of the California Court of Appeals’ recent ruling in Vaquero, et al. v. Stoneledge...more

Recent Developments in the NLRB’s Joint and Single Employer Doctrines

Highlights of recent developments relevant to all employers. The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) is poised to return to a Republican majority, which likely will result in a change in labor law philosophy....more

Checking In on Background Checks

Background checks are a valuable (and often essential) part of the hiring process. They help employers find good employees and avoid risky hires. Failure to check applicants’ backgrounds can amount to negligence and may...more

4th Circuit Decision Highlights Importance of Comparator Evidence

The Fourth Circuit recently upheld a lower court decision granting summary judgment to the employer in an employment discrimination suit brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”) and Maryland law,...more

Third Circuit Finds Title IX Provides a Remedy for Sex Discrimination in Fully Funded Educational Institutions

The Third Circuit Court of Appeals has again created a circuit split by disagreeing with decisions from the Fifth and Seventh Circuit Courts of Appeals, which have held that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 provides...more

Maine Law Court Charts Different Course for Age Discrimination

It is not often that the Law Court interprets the Maine Human Rights Act (MHRA) differently from its federal counterparts. In a recent decision, though, the Law Court did exactly that – it held that the standard for...more

The D.C. Circuit Vacates NLRB Ruling on Driver Status in FedEx Case

In early March 2017, the D.C. Circuit in FedEx Home Delivery v. NLRB, 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 3826 (D.C. Cir. 2017) vacated a National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or “the Board”) ruling that Connecticut FedEx drivers...more

“The freezing trucker” and Gorsuch’s heart of ice: A micro-fiction

It was a bleak and frigid night on I-88 somewhere in northern Illinois. The icy wind whipped across the flatlands, grazing the endless rows of white, brittle remains of lastScreen Shot 2017-03-23 at 6.09.47 PM year’s corn...more

Wait! Did the Fourth Circuit Just Define FLSA Joint Employment More Broadly Than Obama’s DOL?

Employers have no doubt been paying close attention to the future of the joint employer doctrine, which was a focus of change and expansion for DOL leadership during the Obama administration. With a new administration in...more

Be Careful With That! – Second Circuit Dismisses Failure to Accommodate Claim Brought by “Needle Phobic” Pharmacist

On March 21, 2017, the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a former Rite Aid pharmacist’s claim against Rite Aid for refusing to accommodate his “needle phobia.” In 2011, Rite Aid altered the job description for its...more

What Does “At Will” Employment Really Mean?

Years ago, I recall having a friendly conversation with another attorney in Connecticut where the topic turned to the notion of “At Will” employment. When we couldn’t settle on an answer, we moved on to talking about...more

Employer Liability for Injuries Sustained by Temporary Agency Workers

The use of temporary employees provided by agencies that supply laborers, secretaries, nurses or other skilled or unskilled workers to the public and private sector is increasing. Employers who use these temporary agency...more

The Michigan Department of Civil Rights Releases 2017 Revised Michigan Law Prohibits Discrimination Poster

The Michigan Department of Civil Rights ("MDCR") recently released its revised version of the posting Michigan Law Prohibits Discrimination required by the Michigan Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act and the Persons with...more

Enhanced Whistleblower Protections for Nonprofit Employees

In the wake of Governor John Kitzhaber's resignation last year, the Oregon Legislature amended Oregon's "whistleblower" protection statute (ORS 659A.203) by expanding it to include Section 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations...more

 Be Careful About Signing USDOL Back-Wage Summaries

When U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators conclude that back-wages are due under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act or another law the Division enforces, typically they present to the employer a...more

Top 10 OSHA Citations for 2016

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration publishes a list annually of its top 10 most frequently cited alleged violations. The list changes little from year to year, but it is worthwhile for employers to...more

4.5 Million Disability Discrimination Verdict Against Auto Dealer Who Failed to Investigate

A federal jury in Florida has awarded $4.5 million against an auto dealer for claims of disability discrimination under the Florida Civil Rights Act (FCRA). Axel v. Fields Motorcars of Florida, Inc., No. 8:15-cv-893-17JSS...more

Employers Closely Follow Gorsuch Confirmation Hearing as He May Cast Deciding Vote on Validity of Class Action Waivers

March 22, 2017 marks the third day of the confirmation hearing for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch. Many employers throughout the Carolinas are watching the process with interest given the impact Judge Gorsuch would...more

March Preparedness: Inadequate Employee Training May Cause Even the Best Employers to Suffer an Upset

Employers implement employee training programs for a variety of reasons, such as furthering professional development and improving poor performance, ensuring compliance with information security protocols and competence using...more

Workwise: Don't Skimp on Statutory Minimums: Drafting an Enforceable Termination Clause

The recent decision of the Court of Appeal for Ontario in Wood v. Fred Deeley Imports Ltd., 2017 ONCA 158 (Wood), once again highlights that employers must be very careful when it comes to drafting termination clauses as a...more

2016 Recap: A Busy Year for Employment Law

In case you missed it, 2016 was a banner year for the California Legislature in enacting new employment laws. Here are the highlights...more

US: Guns at Work: The Implications of the Fifth Circuit’s Recent Decision in Swindol v. Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation

The US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit’s recent decision in Swindol v. Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation casts new doubt on the enforceability of employer policies prohibiting employees from carrying firearms onto...more

Second Circuit Rejects Employee’s Trypanophobia Claim

You don’t need to look for a needle in a haystack to figure out this latest case from the Second Circuit. But you do need to know what “trypanophobia” is....more

Vive la France! French Parent Company Potentially Liable on Alleged ADEA Claim on a Single-Employer Theory

With some exceptions, the ADEA applies to the U.S.-incorporated subsidiaries of foreign corporations. It remains unsettled whether employees can sue foreign parent companies of U.S. subsidiaries for age discrimination under...more

Is Disloyalty Its Own Reward?

May a disloyal employee keep the compensation his employer paid him, even while he was betraying his employer’s trust? In a recent case, the Connecticut Supreme Court said “yes, at least in some circumstances.” Here’s the...more

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