Employment & Labor Insider

Employment & Labor Insider

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Tag Archives: Ellen Kearns

Weekly catch-up

Posted in Franchise, Independent Contractor, Politics, Wage-Hour
Trump DOL removes Obama DOL guidance on independent contractors, joint employment. On Wednesday, Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta removed two Administrator’s Interpretations on independent contractors and joint employment issued during the Obama Administration. Here is our Client Bulletin, which I wrote with Jim Coleman, co-chair of our Wage and Hour Practice Group. The quick and dirty:… Continue Reading

What should employers do about overtime now? Ask the wage-hour lawyers.

Posted in Wage-Hour
As most readers know, the U.S. Department of Labor’s overtime rule, which was set to take effect yesterday, was preliminarily enjoined (temporarily blocked) on November 22 by U.S. District Court Judge Amos Mazzant III. The injunction in Nevada v. Perez applies nationwide, but the court’s decision is not final, and the DOL appealed yesterday. An article… Continue Reading

Court blocks DOL overtime rule: The fuller story

Posted in Wage-Hour
NOTE FROM ROBIN: As I posted last night, the U.S. Department of Labor Overtime Rule, which would have taken effect a week from tomorrow, has been preliminarily enjoined. I am re-posting here a client bulletin by Jim Coleman, co-chair of our Wage and Hour Compliance and Litigation Practice Group, and me. This went out to our clients… Continue Reading

Employment and labor law developments (and a few other things) I’m thankful for

Posted in Affirmative Action, Discrimination, Elections, FOCUS, Gender Identity Discrimination, Labor Relations, Public Sector Employment, Settlements, Sexual Orientation
This has been a weird year for me. (And, no, I’m not even thinking about the election!) But I have much to be thankful for, and I hope you do, too. BREAKING THING TO BE THANKFUL FOR: Yesterday evening, the U.S. Department of Labor’s new rule governing white-collar exemptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act was struck… Continue Reading

Massachusetts expands protections to transgender individuals

Posted in Discrimination, Gender Identity Discrimination
As of October 1, “places of public accommodation” in Massachusetts will be prohibited from discriminating based on gender identity. That is, persons accessing a “place of public accommodation” must be permitted to use gender-segregated locations (such as restrooms and locker rooms) consistent with their gender identity. Any place that is open to and accepts or solicits… Continue Reading

Weekly catch-up

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Equal Pay, Franchise, Wage-Hour
Massachusetts has had a “comparable worth” law forever, but Gov. Charlie Baker just signed some amendments that will make it easier for women (and men) to assert pay equity claims. In addition to making it easier for plaintiffs to prove that two jobs are “substantially similar,” the law prohibits asking for salary history before a conditional offer of… Continue Reading

Too many RULES, man!

Posted in Affordable Care Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act, GINA, Only in California, Wage-Hour
“Do this, don’t do that, can’t you read the rules . . .”* Of course, the mega-topic this week was the U.S. Department of Labor’s Final Rule on white-collar exemptions to the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Ellen Kearns, co-chair of our Wage and Hour Practice Group, wrote a great Client Bulletin… Continue Reading

Your overtime rule news portal for today

Posted in Wage-Hour
Vice President Joe Biden is expected to announce the official release of the U.S. Department of Labor’s new overtime rule this afternoon in an appearance at Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream in Columbus, Ohio. I’ll post the rule, which will change the white-collar overtime exemptions to the Fair Labor Standards Act, as soon as it’s available. Meanwhile, the DOL… Continue Reading

Is obesity a “per se” disability? One court says no.

Posted in Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination
A panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit ruled this week that obesity is not a “disability” within the meaning of the Americans with Disabilities Act — even as amended in 2009 — unless the condition was caused by some underlying physiological disorder. In addition, if the individual develops a medical condition… Continue Reading

Who was naughty, and who was nice in employment law this year

Posted in Affordable Care Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Discrimination, Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act, GINA, Harassment, Labor Relations, Lawyers!, Pregnancy, Protected Concerted Activity, Retaliation, Safety, Social media, Telecommuting, Wage-Hour
Who’s been naughty and who’s been nice in labor and employment law? Here are my picks for 2015. Feel free to add your own in the comments. NAUGHTY! The National Labor Relations Board, for being naughty in too many ways to mention. Its rules on employer handbook policies, including confidentiality and social media, are unrealistic… Continue Reading

Overtime exemption rule now coming in July 2016?

Posted in Wage-Hour
NOTE FROM ROBIN: Ellen Kearns is head of our Boston Office and co-chair of the firm’s Wage-Hour Practice Group. The new overtime white-collar exemption rule will be issued approximately July 2016, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s fall 2015 regulatory agenda, which the Office of Management and Budget published just before Thanksgiving. I had earlier… Continue Reading

DOL’s Home Care Rule goes live.

Posted in Wage-Hour
Yesterday the U.S. Department of Labor began enforcement of its Home-Care Rule, which prohibits third-party employers from taking advantage of the overtime exemption for some domestic workers. The rule also narrows the definition of exempt “companionship services” under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Ellen Kearns, co-chair of our firm’s Wage and Hour Practice Group, and I (mostly… Continue Reading

The on-air shootings at WDBJ-TV: When bad things happen to good employees

Posted in Background Checks, Violence
What could WDBJ7-TV have done to prevent Wednesday morning’s tragic on-air murders? Unfortunately, probably not a thing. I’m a second-guesser, and I have spent much of the last 48 hours racking my brain about what the CBS affiliate in Roanoke, Virginia, could have done differently. Based on what I’ve been able to discern, the station did everything… Continue Reading

Employers, you’ll never pooh-pooh the GINA again.

Posted in Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act, GINA
The following is a scatological post, so grab a stool, have a seat, and listen up! (Or get a magazine.) On Monday, a federal jury in Atlanta awarded two hourly warehouse workers $2.2 million in a lawsuit brought under the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act. The controversy started when Atlas Logistics Group Retail Services, a grocery distributor, had a problem… Continue Reading

Planning your workplace holiday party? Read this first!

Posted in Discrimination, Harassment, Safety, Sexual Torts, Uncategorized, Violence, Wage-Hour
Yeah, yeah – I know it isn’t even Thanksgiving yet, but you are planning your holiday party now, and you want answers to your burning questions while you still have time to do something about it. And, as luck would have it, I presented a webinar on Wednesday with David Weisenfeld of XpertHR on “How… Continue Reading