HR Legalist

Employment Law Updates & Best Practices for Employers

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (“ADEA”) forbids employment discrimination against employees who are 40 years of age or older.  Private employers with less than 20 employees are not subject to the ADEA.  On November 6, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously[1] held that the ADEA’s 20-employee threshold does not apply to government employers, and that state and local government entities are subject to the ADEA even if they have fewer than 20…
On October 29, 2018, a San Francisco federal jury unanimously found that a Silicon Valley tech company did not commit unlawful retaliation by firing a transgender employee who accused the company of discrimination in a two-star Glassdoor review. Adrian Scott Duane, a transgender man, alleged on the job review website that IXL Learning, Inc. (IXL), an educational technology provider, gave unequal treatment to employees on the basis of race, sexual orientation, and gender
Despite the sensitive nature of employment-related claims like discrimination and retaliation and harassment and hostile work environment, it is rare for judges to admit to personal biases that could influence their decision-making. But a federal district court judge has recently just done exactly that.  On August 30, 2018, the Hon. Lewis T. Babcock, a Senior United States District Judge for the District of Colorado, recused himself from a disability discrimination lawsuit because his son is…
Earlier this year, HR Legalist posted a blog entry about the New Jersey Earned Sick Leave Law.  This new law (full text available here) takes effect on October 29, 2018 and requires most private sector employers in New Jersey to provide paid sick leave to its New Jersey employees.  But don’t let this scare you.  We’ve got some ghouls—I mean, tools—to help keep employers from getting tangled in this latest web of sick leave laws. …
On September 25, 2018, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ended an aggressive five-year legal battle between Uber and its drivers regarding whether or not drivers should be considered employees versus independent contractors.  In O’Connor v. Uber, the court avoided the central issue of the proper classification of drivers by ruling that drivers suing for expenses and tips must submit their claims to arbitration in accordance with Uber’s driver agreement.  The Ninth Circuit’s opinion,…
A spate of new state and local regulations is making it tougher to be an employer in the City That Never Sleeps.  As previously covered by HR Legalist, new requirements for sexual harassment policies went into effect across New York State on October 9, 2018, and burdensome new requirements for harassment-related training will go into effect statewide on October 9, 2019.  In addition, New York City employers must comply with the Stop Sexual Harassment
As previously covered by HR Legalist, employers across New York State have until October 9, 2018,  to implement sexual harassment policies that meet specific minimum requirements defined in the law.  On Monday afternoon, the State of New York issued final guidance which granted employers a significant reprieve on the portion of the law governing mandatory sexual harassment prevention and training. Thanks to this new guidance, employers in New York State now have until October…
In April 2018, Governor Cuomo signed the 2019 New York State budget, which includes sweeping new requirements for sexual harassment policies and training for private employers of all sizes.  The October 9th deadline for all New York State employers to create, publish and implement sexual harassment policies is fast approaching. Even more burdensome for employers in New York State, is the January 1, 2019 deadline for all employees to have completed sexual harassment training (NOTE:…
On July 3, 2018 the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit[1] ruled on the case of Minarsky v. Susquehanna County et al, 17-2646 (Jul. 3, 2018). The case clarifies and limits the scope of the Faragher-Ellerth affirmative defense in workplace harassment cases. Established by the Supreme Court in 1988, the Faragher-Ellerth defense  provides the employer a defense to workplace harassment claims when it can show that (1) it exercised reasonable…
  Some employers require employees to enter into non-competition agreements at the time of hire, preventing them from competing with their employer during employment and during a certain time period after their employment ends. Non-compete agreements are often presented to employees with access to intellectual property, trade secrets, customer lists, business plans and strategies, and other valuable information that could potentially allow the employee to engage in unfair competition after leaving employment.  Along with confidentiality,…