News & Analysis as of

Developments Impacting Benefits for Same-Sex Spouses

As federal and state agencies and courts further examine the implications of the Supreme Court of the United States’ ruling on same-sex marriage in U.S. v. Windsor, the laws and regulations governing employee benefits for...more

California's Inside Sales Exemption May Be Lost Where Commissions Are Paid on a Monthly or Less Frequent Basis

A recent California Supreme Court decision significantly impacts pay practices for commissioned sales employees. On July 14, 2014, the state Supreme Court ruled in Peabody v. Time Warner Cable, Inc. that an employer may not...more

U.S. Supreme Court Grants Review of Restrictions on Federal Agency Rulemaking in Mortgage Loan Officer Overtime Case

In our July 2013 alert, we reported on a federal appellate court ruling in Mortgage Bankers Association v. Harris. Mortgage Bankers Association challenged a U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) 2010 opinion letter in support of...more

How Employers Fared With the Supremes This Term and What the Future May Hold

During its recently concluded 2013 term, the U.S. Supreme Court issued decisions in two labor and employment cases, three constitutional or quasi-constitutional cases that impact labor and employment concerns, and one tax...more

California Supreme Court: Gentry is Gone. PAGA Lives On.

Compelled by U.S. Supreme Court precedent advancing arbitration as a method of dispute resolution, the California Supreme Court in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC (No. S20432, June 23, 2014) held that its...more

Supreme Court Agrees To Hear Trade Group Challenge To Mortgage Loan Officer Compensation Guidance

On June 16, the U.S. Supreme Court consolidated and agreed to hear two related cases regarding the Department of Labor’s (DOL) 2010 interpretation of its regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act that mortgage loan...more

Supreme Court to Review Cases Involving Overtime Exemption for Mortgage Loan Officers

On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court accepted review of two lower court decisions of significant importance to the banking and financial services industries. The cases involve the question of whether mortgage loan officers are...more

Supreme Court to Review Whether Rulemaking is Required When DOL and Other Agencies Flip-Flop on Regulatory Interpretations

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to review whether the Department of Labor must engage in notice-and-comment rulemaking in order to significantly alter its interpretation of the agency’s Fair Labor Standards Act...more

The Supreme Court’s Ginsberg Decision Could Significantly Affect the Outcome of Motor Carrier Preemption Cases

In a unanimous decision, the U.S. Supreme Court recently held that the Airline Deregulation Act (ADA) can preempt even common law claims for breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing if such claims relate...more

Is There Quality to the Argument That Severance Payments Are Not Taxable "Wages"? – Supreme Court Holds That Severance Payments...

Earlier this week, on March 25, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a highly publicized decision in the case of United States v. Quality Stores. In Quality Stores, the Court unanimously held that the severance payments...more

Supreme Court Says No Need To Pay Union Employees For Certain Protective Gear Dressing If Bargaining Agreement Excludes It

In Sandifer v. U.S. Steel Corp., the U.S. Supreme Court held that the FLSA does not require unionized employers to compensate employees for time spent putting on and taking off certain protective clothing if they have a...more

Unionized Employers Take Note Of The Recent Supreme Court Ruling Under The FLSA

On January 27, 2014, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court interpreted the meaning of the term “changing clothes” found in the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA or Act), specifically at 29 U.S.C. § 203(o). This case is significant for...more

Supreme Court Accepts Certiorari In Security Screening Case

We’ve written at least twice now on class actions arising out of time spent by employees going through security lines, primarily at the end of their shifts. The question is whether and when such time might be compensable...more

Supreme Court Lets Two FLSA Rulings Stand: Yes on Personal Liability and Undocumented Workers’ Standing to Sue

Last week, the Supreme Court of the United States decided that it would not review two wage and hour cases. The first, Catsimatidis v. Irizarry, which was resolved through a settlement agreement, considered whether an...more

Are Employees Owed Pay for Going Through Security? SCOTUS Will Decide

The U.S. Supreme Court granted cert on March 3, 2014 in Integrity Staffing Solutions, Inc. v. Jesse Busk to resolve a federal circuit split on whether time employees spend in security screenings is compensable under the FLSA....more

Fenwick Employment Brief - March 2014

In February, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed the Fair Chance Ordinance, which limits when and to what extent employers can inquire into the criminal history of applicants and employees. The ordinance also...more

Pay for Time Spent Donning and Doffing Protective Gear

The Supreme Court’s unanimous decision in Sandifer v. United States Steel Corp., No. 12-417 (January 27, 2014) should serve as an impetus for all employers to review their pay practices with respect to paying employees for...more

In Light of Supreme Court's Sandifer Decision, Employers Should Revisit "Donning and Doffing" Compensation Policies

On January 27, 2014, the United States Supreme Court held that time spent donning and doffing required protective gear was not compensable under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the terms of a collective bargaining...more

Supreme Court’s Sandifer Decision Is Not Just About Changing Clothes

In Sandifer et al. v. United States Steel Corp., a unanimous Supreme Court clarified the meaning of "changing clothes" found in Section 203(o) of the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA" or "Act"), holding that "changing clothes"...more

Court Continues A Fairly Busy Term

Perhaps coincidence, perhaps not, but on "Cyber Monday" the U.S. Supreme Court refused to "click yes" to consider two cases contesting the constitutionality of click-through-nexus when, as discussed further below, it denied...more

Get Dressed! But Don’t Expect The Company to Pay for It!

Sandifer v. United States Steel Corporation, U.S. Supreme Court No. 12-417, decided January 27, 2014 (appeal from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit), is one of the rarer instances in which the Supreme Court...more

NLRB 2013 Year in Review and 2014 Initiatives

Key labor law developments of 2013 are reviewed here for employers to consider as they look ahead to National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) developments in 2014. Employers should prepare to respond to the NLRB's continued...more

Employment Law - Feb 06, 2014

The More Things Change: U.S. Supreme Court Rules on “Changing Clothes” - Why it matters: In a unanimous decision – save for a single footnote – the U.S. Supreme Court held that the time spent donning and doffing...more

U.S. Supreme Court Takes The Wind Out Of Donning And Doffing Class Actions

For years, plaintiffs’ lawyers have brought class actions against employers seeking compensation for time spent by employees putting on and taking off protective gear. The numbers have been staggering, as eight figure...more

The Supreme Court’s Sandifer Decision and Collective Actions

Last week, the Supreme Court decided the case of Sandifer v. United States Steel Corp., Case No. 12-417 (Jan. 27, 2014), addressing donning and doffing claims in the context of a unionized steel mill. That case not only...more

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