Latest from Ogletree Deakins Insights - Page 2

On February 1, 2021, in an unpublished opinion resolving a Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) attorney’s fees dispute, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, in Batista v. South Florida Womans Health Associates, Inc., struck another blow against unreasonable plaintiffs’ counsel seeking “reasonable” fees. Mitzy Batista appealed the district court’s finding that it would be unreasonable to award her counsel, Elliot Kozolchyk, any attorney’s fees given his conduct during litigation filed under the FLSA. Ultimately,…
On February 24, 2021, the Biden administration issued a proclamation immediately revoking the prior administration’s Proclamation 10014 of April 22, 2020, that blocked individuals from entering the United States on immigrant visas. Note that the proclamation provides relief to the ban on immigrant visas only. The Trump administration’s ban on certain nonimmigrant visa categories, such as H-1B, J-1, and L-1 visas, still remains in effect and is currently set to expire on…
The Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA), 2021 includes a provision that modified and extended the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Specifically, Section 311 of the Additional Coronavirus Response and Relief provisions of the CAA provides for PPP second draw loans for eligible businesses. Employers seeking a PPP loan may apply through March 31, 2021. Below are answers to some key questions regarding second draw PPP loans. Question 1. What are some key distinctions…
Minimum Wage Increase Booted From Stimulus Package. Even before members of the U.S. House of Representatives could vote on their $1.9 trillion stimulus package, the parliamentarian of the U.S. Senate had ruled that the provision in the package that increased the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour could not be included in any legislation that would pass the Senate. Senate Parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough found that the provision violated the rules of the budget reconciliation…
On February 24, 2021, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced it would expand premium processing services to include change of status or extension of status petitions for E-3 nonimmigrant visa classification. This expanded premium processing option went into effect immediately. Classification for E-3 nonimmigrant visa status applies only to Australian nationals who: “[h]ave a legitimate offer of employment in the United States”; “[p]ossess the necessary academic or other qualifying credentials”; and “[w]ill fill…
On February 3, 2021, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) updated its frequently asked questions (FAQs) to make clear that employers can seek an extension for reporting year 2020—known as a request for an “enforcement deferral period”—as to its newly enacted pay data reporting requirement that reports are otherwise due on March 31, 2021. The DFEH cited the novel nature of the reporting requirement for employers in 2021 and additional complications presented…
Certain Canadian provinces have been especially hard hit by COVID-19 outbreaks. Most notably, Ontario and Quebec—two of Canada’s most populated provinces—have experienced the highest number of infection counts among the country’s provinces. While Ontario and Quebec have struggled to contain the spread of COVID-19, other provinces have had a different experience. Throughout the pandemic, Atlantic Canada has been the “gold standard” with respect to its containment of COVID-19. Unfortunately, Newfoundland and Labrador recently had its…
The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed summary judgment on behalf of an employer that was sued in an interference claim under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). In the case, Hickey v. Protective Life Corporation, which the Seventh Circuit decided on February 12, 2021, the plaintiff had also alleged a retaliation claim under the FMLA, but he voluntarily dismissed that claim prior to summary judgment being entered. Background The plaintiff worked as…
On February 24, 2021, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it reached the H-2B cap for the second half of fiscal year (FY) 2021. The cap was officially reached on February 12, 2021. USCIS explained that the number of beneficiaries for whom USCIS received petitions has surpassed the number of total H-2B visas available for FY 2021. On February 17, 2021, USCIS performed a random selection process of the petitions that were received…
Just as the calendar was turning to 2021, the Council of the District of Columbia threw District of Columbia employers a late-breaking curveball that most did not see coming. The Ban on Non-Compete Agreements Amendment Act of 2020 (D.C. Act 23-563) was passed by the Council on December 15, 2020, and signed by Mayor Muriel Bowser on January 11, 2021. The legislation, which will create a near-total ban on noncompete agreements, took the Washington, D.C.,…