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US Supreme Court Substantially Relaxes Requirements for Federal Agency Rulemaking

On March 9, the US Supreme Court issued a decision in Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Association, 575 U.S. ___ (2015) that significantly relaxes the requirements for federal agencies making changes to rules interpreting the regulations they enforce.  The case stems from a 2010 Department of Labor “Administrator Interpretation” that reversed the Department’s position (articulated in … Continue Reading

EEOC Charge Filing in 2014: Number of Charges Down, Retaliation Claims Up

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has released its annual statistical report  detailing charge filing activity in 2014.  The EEOC, the federal administrative agency which investigates and prosecutes claims of employment discrimination, harassment, and retaliation under a number of employment and civil rights statutes, reported 88,778 charges filed in 2014, down from 93,727 charges filed … Continue Reading

UK Government proposals on Employment Tribunal practice suffer serious credibility gap

It wouldn’t happen in professional football. There you are as coach, carefully psyching up your team to a nerve-jangling peak of readiness in the dressing room when one of the match officials trots in to tell you that the other side would actually rather come back and do it in three months, if that’s OK … Continue Reading

Employees of New York City Strip Club Dance Off With $10M

On November 14, 2014, a New York federal judge awarded [pdf] over $10 million in back pay wages to about 2,000 current and former exotic dancers in a class action lawsuit brought against Rick’s Cabaret for unpaid wages from 2005-2012.  This recent order awarding damages to the dancers is a furtherance of the Court’s September … Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Holds That Closely Held For-Profit Corporations Can Avoid ACA Contraception Mandate

The Supreme Court has issued a 5-4 decision in which it found that closely-held for-profit corporations can avoid the mandate under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that requires the provision of birth control coverage to their employees.  In reaching their decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties v. Burwell, the justices determined … Continue Reading

First Stop Bullying Orders made by Australian Fair Work Commission

On 1 January 2014, the Fair Work Commission (FWC) gained the jurisdiction to make “stop” orders in relation to bullying.     In March, the FWC handed down its first Stop Bullying Orders. The Orders, made by Senior Deputy President Drake in the case of Applicant v Respondent PR548852, were made by consent following a conference between … Continue Reading

EAT examines apparent bias in UK Employment Tribunals

Are you neither complacent nor unduly sensitive or suspicious?  Are you fair-minded, informed and balanced?  Do you often catch buses in Clapham?  In that case, the Employment Tribunal has just the job for you, a role integral to the administration of legal justice, though sadly not paid very well, or indeed at all.    If you … Continue Reading

UK Employment Tribunals share your pain. No, really

Obviously when you hold a high judicial office in the UK you have to be very measured in the reports you can make about your function – no ranting tweets here about your boss/service-users/colleagues/coffee, thank you, or that’s your gong firmly down the drain.   Which makes all the more laudable the very clear disgruntlement discernible … 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

5 lessons employers can learn from the Paula Deen Scandal

1.  Mind your tongue.  Racial slurs and comments are never appropriate in the workplace and never when used by the boss.  Failing to take action when you learn of employees at any level using racial or ethnic slurs undermines efforts to create a harassment free environment and opens the door to serious liability. 2.  Pay people fairly.  … Continue Reading
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