Archives: Employment Contracts

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Supreme Court Weighs Validity of Employer Class Action Waivers; Justices’ Questions Suggest A Close Decision Ahead

Yesterday marked the first day of the United States Supreme Court’s new term, and the first case heard (Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis) was one of interest to employers around the country.  In several cases consolidated before the Court on appeal, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) found employer arbitration agreements that included waivers of … Continue Reading

US Supreme Court to Resolve Dispute Over Enforceability of Class Waivers in Arbitration Agreements

  As followers of our blog know, we have been closely watching developments over the past few years involving the tension between the National Labor Relations Board and the courts concerning whether arbitration agreements that require employees to resolve most employment-related disputes in individual arbitration proceedings, and bar the use of class or collective action … Continue Reading

Costly SEC Settlement Reminds Publicly-Traded Employers of Dodd-Frank Requirements

On April 3, 2015, we reported that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had sent letters to numerous publicly-traded U.S. companies requesting their nondisclosure agreements, severance and settlement agreements, and other contracts entered into after the enactment of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (“Dodd-Frank”) to determine whether the documents unduly interfere … Continue Reading

Gardening Leave – Avoiding the Thorns!

In the absence of any right at common law or under Australia’s Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth), the general rule is that gardening leave must be conferred by an express power in an employment contract.  In a remarkable decision by the Victorian Supreme Court in Australia it was held that the employer’s power to direct … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Reiterates Preemptive Effect of Federal Arbitration Act

The U.S. Supreme Court has once again reinforced its interpretation of the Federal Arbitration Act, ruling on December 14 that a California state law prohibiting class action waivers in arbitration agreements may not trump the Court’s earlier decision in favor of enforcement of arbitration agreements. In the four years since the Supreme Court’s decision in … Continue Reading

A $3 million reason for Australian employers to review their contracts and policies – now!

There’s never been a more opportune time for employers in Australia to review their contracts and policies than now, with the NSW Supreme Court this week awarding more than $3 million to a chief executive after finding his employer’s redundancy policy was incorporated into his employment contract. Mr James was the CEO at ABN AMRO … Continue Reading

That Delaware choice of law provision might not save your non-compete, at least when California is involved

Last week, the Delaware Chancery Court in Ascension Insurance Holdings, LLC v. Underwood refused to grant injunctive relief to a Delaware company seeking to enforce a non-compete agreement against a California resident.  In that case, Mr. Underwood, a California resident, participated in a sale of business assets and their associated goodwill to the Delaware company.  … Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Issues Decision Affecting Retiree Benefits

From Greg Viviani via our Global Compensation Insights blog: In M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, the U.S. Supreme Court has opened the door for many employers to re-examine their ability to alter or amend retiree benefit plans. The Court rejected a long-standing presumption in the Sixth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals (Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio, … Continue Reading

United States Supreme Court Declines to Review California Supreme Court Decision Erecting Barriers Against Arbitrating Private Attorneys General Act Claims

On January 20, the United States Supreme Court denied a motion for certiorari filed by CLS Transportation which was appealing the California Supreme Court’s decision in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation, about which we blogged in June. While Iskanian generally vindicated employers’ right to enforce class action bans in arbitration agreements, the California Supreme Court distinguished … Continue Reading

Landmark High Court decision! Implied term of mutual trust and confidence rejected in Australia

What’s the verdict? Australian employers awaiting the High Court decision on CBA v Barker [2014] HCA 32 have not been disappointed.  Yes, employers can finally breathe a sigh of relief, with the High Court effectively overturning the decision of the Full Court of the Federal Court on this issue. The High Court has determined that … Continue Reading

No help from UK Courts for “absurd” non-competition covenant – over to you, employers

A strong message to employers from the Court of Appeal this week to check your restrictive covenants, but this time to do it properly.  None of that just casting an idle eye over the relevant page of your executive’s contracts – description of territory, tick; vague reference to competition, tick; not wholly fanciful restraint periods, … Continue Reading

France: New laws on part-time contracts

As part of its push to simplify employment law and regulation, but using the word “simplicity” in its very loosest sense, the French Government has introduced new rules governing the use of part-time contracts. The key changes for French employers to note are that part-time employees must usually be offered a minimum of 24 hours’ … Continue Reading

Wages claim exposes cheerleaders’ relations with players

Following on from Ellen Inglis’ piece on Kerry Miller, the Burton Albion Football Club administrator who sent ‘sexy selfies’ to players half her age, comes a tale from ‘football’ on the other side of the Atlantic, of players, cheerleaders, rules and mild condescension.    The Oakland Raiders, with their skull and crossbones logo and rabid fans, … Continue Reading

Back to the future – the ongoing application of the provisions of the new law of June 2013 on French part-time contracts

Many of the provisions of the new law passed in June 2013 relating to part-time employment came into force on 1st January.  These provisions include a minimum of 24 hours’ work per week (which may be waived in certain cases) and an increased rate of salary for extra hours from the first hour of overtime (previously, … Continue Reading

All roads lead to Rome for EU governing law clauses

Schlecker v Boedeker C-64/12 concerned a dispute over the correct law applicable to an employment contract in the absence of an express governing law clause; the dispute provided the European Court of Justice with a timely opportunity to reiterate the correct application of the Rome Convention to employment contracts. The Convention allows parties to a … Continue Reading

US Federal Contractors and Subcontractors Beware: Your Affirmative Action Obligations are About to Increase

Days ago, on August 27, 2013, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) announced a Final Rule which increases the affirmative action obligations of federal contractors and subcontractors, which have been in place for over 40 years, with regard to individuals with disabilities (IWD) and military veterans.  The Final Rule … Continue Reading

High Court tells ex-employees to hand back control of LinkedIn Groups to employer

In recent webinars and workshops we have discussed the issues presented by the use of social networking sites, particularly LinkedIn, by employees who leave to join a competitor or set up on their own. Last week, written judgment was handed down in relation to an injunction application in the case of Whitmar Publications Limited v … Continue Reading

Backing a new employee in restrictive covenant proceedings can be costly

Earlier this month, the New South Wales Supreme Court in Australia ordered costs against an employer which funded an employee’s defence of restraint proceedings instigated by his former employer. HRX Pty Ltd v Scott is the latest in a series of legal spats involving human resourcing companies Talent2 and HRX. In this case, HRX employed … Continue Reading

Owners vs employees …

I have been thinking some more about the Government proposal for employees to acquire shares in their employer in exchange for signing away some of their employment rights. Instinct and experience tell me that shared ownership is generally a good thing, it can strengthen the commitment of employees to the goals of the organisation in … Continue Reading

Variable Remuneration – determination of the Bonus Pool

Companies often tell staff how the bonus pool is doing during the fiscal year. According to a new decision of the German Federal Labour Court greater caution should now be exercised in this regard.   The employees received an annual bonus payment awarded at the employer’s discretion. In August 2008 the employer formed a view of … Continue Reading
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