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The Clock is Ticking! July 1 Deadline for DOL Overtime Exemption Rule Changes Draws Near (US)

For nearly a year, we have been tracking (see here and here) the US Department of Labor’s (DOL) Final Rule modifying the salary requirements applicable to US employees who are exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act’s (FLSA) overtime requirement under the executive, administrative, and professional (EAP) “white collar exemptions.” The Final Rule is scheduled … Continue Reading

Artificial Intelligence (AI) Employment Discrimination Laws Proposed in Six States: What Employers Need to Know (US)

We recently wrote about Colorado’s historic law aimed at protecting, among others, employees and employment applicants from harm arising out of the use of artificial intelligence (AI) systems. Although Colorado is the first state to pass legislation addressing AI-based discrimination, similar bills have been proposed in at least six other states as well as at … Continue Reading

US State Law Roundup – 2024 Mid-year Update

State and local legislatures have been active throughout the first half of 2024 passing laws and ordinances that will impact employers of all sizes and all industries. Click HERE for our summary of these laws and related developments in Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, New York, Washington and elsewhere! As always, our team will continue to monitor these and … Continue Reading

Could Artificial Intelligence Create Real Liability for Employers? Colorado Just Passed the First U.S. Law Addressing Algorithmic Discrimination in Private Sector Use of AI Systems (US)

On May 17, 2024, Colorado became the first U.S. state to pass a law aimed at protecting consumers from harm arising out of the use of artificial intelligence (“AI”) systems. Senate Bill 24-205, or the “CAIA,” is designed to regulate the private-sector use of AI systems and will impose obligations on Colorado employers, including affirmative … Continue Reading

New York Requires Paid Lactation Breaks and Prenatal Leave (US)

New York’s recently approved 2024 – 2025 budget brings two major changes to the landscape of leave and accommodation laws that New York employers need to know about. Paid Lactation Breaks Effective June 19, 2024, all private sector employers (regardless of size) will be required to provide 30 minutes of paid break time to employees … Continue Reading

Fourth Circuit Holds Firm Against Expansion of Religion-Based Defenses to Discrimination (US)

Lonnie Billard was a well-loved and decorated drama and English teacher at Charlotte Catholic High School (CCHS) in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. He was named Teacher of the Year in 2012 after serving the Catholic high school’s students for eleven years. Two years later, CCHS told Mr. Billard he was not welcome back as a … Continue Reading

In a Rare Win for California Employers, Good Faith is Good Enough to Avoid Wage Statement Penalties (US)

As California employers know all too well, the state is notorious for its employee-friendly laws that can be difficult to navigate and create administrative and compliance headaches. Even the most diligent employers can find themselves on the wrong end of the law for minor, inadvertent errors, subjecting them to harsh and expensive penalties. For example, … Continue Reading

Recent Decisions Prove ADA Reasonable Accommodation Process Can Be Ruff (US)

May 5-11 is National Pet Week. You may be work from home with your constant cuddly companion always nearby, or you may work at one of the growing number of companies offering pet-friendly in-office policies. But if you are or work for one of the many employers with a strict policy against bringing Fluffy or … Continue Reading

EEOC Updates Workplace Harassment Guidelines Reinforcing Protections for LGBTQ+ Employees (US)

For the first time in 25 years, on April 29, 2024, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) published final guidance on harassment in the workplace, updating the federal workplace guidelines to provide protections for transgender workers related to misgendering and the denial of bathroom access. This new guidance reflects the 2020 U.S Supreme Court’s … Continue Reading

New DOL Rule Makes More Employees Eligible for Overtime Pay (US)

Last year, we alerted you to a rule proposed by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) that would raise the weekly salary amounts necessary to qualify for certain exemptions to the requirement under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that employers pay employees time-and-a-half for hours worked in excess of 40 hours in a … Continue Reading

FTC Bans Non-Competes Throughout the United States – Legal Challenges Already Filed (US)

In a long-anticipated move that dramatically alters the employment landscape, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) issued its final Non-Compete Clause Rule (“final rule”) effectively banning employee non-compete agreements throughout the United States. After receiving over 26,000 public comments, the FTC determined that the use of non-compete agreements with workers constitutes an “unfair method of competition” … Continue Reading

EEOC Releases Final Rule Implementing Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (US)

Congress passed the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) on June 27, 2023. The law requires covered employers—which, in the private sector, includes those with 15 or more employees—to provide a reasonable accommodation to a qualified employee’s or applicant’s known limitations related to, affected by, or arising out of pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, unless … Continue Reading

The DOL Updates the QPAM Exemption from Prohibited Transaction Restrictions under ERISA (US)

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (“ERISA”) and the Internal Revenue Code Of 1986, as amended (“Code”) contain broad prohibitions on transactions between ERISA-covered employee benefit plans and Individual Retirement Accounts (“Plans”), as well as certain people or entities closely connected to such Plans, known as “parties in interest” or “disqualified … Continue Reading

DC Circuit Gives NLRB a “Stern” Warning (US)

It’s never a good sign when a court calls your reasoning “nonsense” or instructs your lawyers to “brush up” on their familiarity with legal doctrines. But that’s exactly what a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit did in a decision that overturned the National Labor Relations … Continue Reading

OSHA Final Rule Clarifies Employees’ Walkaround Representative; Opens Non-Union Workplaces to Union Representatives (US)

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) published its controversial final “walkaround” rule on April 1, 2024 (available here). The final rule clarifies the rights of employees to authorize a representative – employee or non-employee – to accompany an OSHA compliance officer (CSHO) during an inspection of their workplace. This can … Continue Reading

Texas Tells Employers No COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates Permitted (US)

Squire Patton Boggs’ Legal Intern Amber Bouie addresses new legislation impacting Texas employers. COVID-19 vaccinations have been the subject of workplace chatter since the vaccines became widely available in late 2020. At first, some states barred government employers from requiring employees receive vaccinations as a condition of continued employment, leaving private sector policies up to … Continue Reading

New York State and City Anti-Discrimination Laws Apply to Non-Residents Seeking Employment in New York (US)

In 2010, the New York Court of Appeals (which is the highest state court in New York) established a test to determine the territorial scope of the New York State Human Rights Law (“NYSHRL”) and the New York City Human Rights Law (“NYCHRL”) – each of which protect employees and applicants for employment from employment-based … Continue Reading

Federal Court Strikes Down NLRB’s Expansive Joint Employer Rule (US)

In a decision providing significant relief for employers, a federal court in Texas struck down the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) 2023 joint employer rule.[i] Being designated a joint employer by the NLRB can have far-reaching consequences for a business, including potential obligations to negotiate with unions representing workers not directly employed by the business … Continue Reading

Apple v. Rivos: Lessons for Companies Facing Claims of Trade Secret Theft (US)

Your General Counsel receives a “cease and desist” letter from a competitor, alleging that the company’s new hire from that competitor has taken trade secrets and accusing the company of misappropriation. Your company has no need for those trade secrets and wants to compete fairly. What steps can be taken to forestall litigation? A recent … Continue Reading

Work is Where the Tax Is: Navigating the “Convenience of the Employer” Rule (US)

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March of 2020, teleworking has been at the forefront of work-life-balance conversations and has become an increasingly popular option for employees. Not only did it make sense for most, but it called into question the true commitment required to pay for a higher cost of living, particularly … Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Holds SOX Whistleblowers Not Required to Show Retaliatory Intent (US)

On February 8, 2024, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously decided in Murray v. UBS Securities, LLC, et al. that employees bringing whistleblower claims against their employer under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) need not prove that, in taking adverse action against them, their employer intended to retaliate against them due to their protected whistleblowing activity. The … Continue Reading

Why You May Have to Comply with California’s New Noncompete – With a February 14 Deadline

Not surprisingly, California is once again passing employment laws that impact companies beyond the state. Specifically, the Golden State is continuing its war against noncompete clauses to conform to case law stating that such clauses are void for any employee working in California — even if the employment contract containing the noncompete was signed in … Continue Reading

Employers Take Note: Big Changes Ahead for the H-1B Lottery, H-1B Filing Process, and USCIS Fees

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently announced updates to the H-1B visa lottery process, availability of online H-1B filings, and increases to most U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) petition filing fees. The H-1B visa lottery and online filing changes will go into effect before the next lottery opens on March 6, 2024, and … Continue Reading
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