Blogs

Employment Discrimination Report
Christina shares her knowledge on the firm's Employment Discrimination Report blog, which covers all aspects of employment discrimination and harassment, including new court decisions and legislation, compliance, best practices, interesting trends in workplace relations and employment-related issues affecting employers.
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Franchise Law Update
For those with an interest in the world of franchising, this blog will become a regular stop. Christina joins members of Fox Rothschild's Franchising, Licensing & Distribution Practice to discuss the significant employment aspects of franchising. The blog also covers diverse topics such as business finance, litigation and the protection of intellectual property including trademarks and copyrights.
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Recent Blog Posts

  • NJ Becomes Tenth State to Mandate Paid Sick Leave Today, as expected, Governor Murphy signed into law the Paid Sick Leave Act.  The Paid Sick Leave law is effective October 29, 2018. The Law requires all New Jersey employers, regardless of size, to provide up to 40 hours of paid sick leave per year.  Full details about the law can be found in our alert here. Employers do have some time to get ready for the new law.  Employers should review their paid time off policies to determine if changes need... More
  • Governor Murphy Signs Pay Equity Bill The NJ legislature has been busy in recent weeks with new employment laws.  Yesterday, Governor Murphy signed the Diane B. Allen Equal Pay Act, which will go into effect on July 1, 2018. The law is probably one of the broadest equal pay laws in the country. Unlike most equal pay laws that prohibit pay disparity based on gender, the law prohibits employers from discriminating against employees in compensation based on membership in any protected class.  This means employers might see... More
  • Prior Salary No Longer a Defense to Equal Pay Claims? This week, the 9th Circuit issued a decision that many say represents a sea change in how employers may defend against Equal Pay Claims. The decision in Rizo v. Yovino issued on April 9, 2018 overturned decades of interpretation of the Equal Pay Act and held that prior salary history may not be considered by employers.  However, there is some language in the ruling that appears to muddy the general rule announced by the Court. Under the Equal Pay Act, it is illegal... More
  • NY’s Women’s Agenda in 2019 Budget Bill Means Big Changes for Employers Monday, New York’s budget bill for FY 2019 was presented to the Governor for signature.  Buried among the usual budget line items are several provisions that will drastically affect employers. In what seems to be a direct response to the #metoo movement, the bill sets training requirements, prohibits mandatory arbitration of discrimination claims, and outlaws confidentiality provisions in settlement agreements unless specifically requested by the complainant. The employment related provisions are set forth in S7507-C.  Here are the highlights (or low lights... More
  • The NLRB Giveth and Taketh Away: Hy-Brand Decision Vacated In December, we wrote that the NLRB had issued a decision overturning Browning-Ferris’ joint employer test and returning to the previous standard for determining joint employment.  That decision in Hy-Brand Industrial Contractors was seen as a return to sanity by employers and pro-business groups. Unfortunately, the NLRB announced today that it had vacated the Hy-Brand decision due to the fact that one of its members who heard the case had a conflict.  Member William Emmanuel’s law firm had participated in the... More
  • Changing Workplace Culture Requires Employers to Address Little and Big Problems Our office was closed last Monday in celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.  I was at the dog park talking to a woman I know who also happens to be a lawyer.  During our discussion of how nice it was to be off of work, she mentioned that not everyone at her firm felt that way. She then told me that there is one partner in her office who every year insists on coming into work on Martin Luther King,... More
  • Happy New Year! New York Employees Are Now Entitled to Paid Family Leave As of January 1, 2018, all New York employers, regardless of size, must offer paid family leave to their employees.  Hopefully, employers already have revised policies in anticipation of the law taking effect. If employers have not revised handbooks or other policies, the law does not require employers to have a paid family leave policy.  However, the state is strongly suggesting that employers do so. New York has a website devoted to Paid Family Leave that provides resources to employers.  They have... More
  • Now is the Time to Conduct Harassment Training I’ve been meaning to blog about all of the harassment charges that have appeared in the news.  Every morning I would get up with a plan to talk about the latest person accused.  And almost every morning it seemed as if there was a new person to talk about.   I quite simply could not get ahead of the avalanche of claims. There were, after all, so many lessons to be learned from each allegation. Rather than try to address them all at... More
  • Browning-Ferris Joint Employer Standard Reversed by NLRB Yesterday afternoon, the NLRB issued a decision in Hy-Brand Industrial Contractors that caused a collective sigh among employers.  The decision rolls back the joint employer standard to what it was before Browning-Ferris Industries, 362 NLRB No 186. The Browning-Ferris decision was greeted with alarm by most employers, especially franchisers and franchisees, as it made it easier for employees to claim that two entities were joint employers. Specifically, Browning-Ferris held that two entities could be joint employers even where they never exercised joint control over essential... More
  • New York City Expands Paid Sick Leave Law On November 6, 2017, the New York City Council passed Int. 1313-2016 that amends the Paid Sick Leave Law.  Don’t panic, employers. The law does not require additional leave. It merely adds another covered reason that employees may use earned paid time off.  New York City’s paid sick leave law will now be entitled the “Earned Safe and Sick Time Act.” Employees will be able to use earned safe/sick time for the following reasons if the employee or the employee’s family member has been... More
  • Massachusetts Will Require Accommodations for Pregnant Employees As of April 1, 2018, employers in Massachusetts will be required to provide accommodations to pregnant employees. In July, the Governor signed into law the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act that amends the Massachusetts’ general discrimination law to require employers to provide a reasonable accommodation to pregnant employees and to prevent employers from discriminating against pregnant employees who request an accommodation. Under the law, there is no set guarantee of leave, but paid or unpaid leave to recover from childbirth may be a... More
  • Will California “Ban the Box”? The California Assembly has passed Assembly Bill 1008, which would affect employers’ abilities to make pre-hire and personnel decisions based on a person’s criminal history.  Governor Jerry Brown has until October 15, 2017 to act on the bill and he is expected to sign it. AB 1008 would apply to all employers in California with five or more employees. The bill would make it unlawful for California employers to:  • Include on any application for employment any question that seeks the disclosure of an applicant’s... More
  • DOL Opinion Letters are Back As a surprising new gift from the Trump Administration, the Department of Labor has decided that it will again start issuing opinion letters on thorny questions about the FMLA and the FLSA and other laws enforced by the Wage and Hour Division. For reasons that were never quite clear, the Obama Administration had done away with the practice; instead preferring to sporadically issue administrator interpretations. For employers, opinion letters are often more helpful as you can tell the DOL your specific facts... More
  • What State’s Law Applies to a Non-Compete Agreement and Why Does it Matter? Employers frequently require employees to sign confidentiality and non-competition agreements.  In most jurisdictions, these agreements are both lawful and prudent provided that they are carefully drafted. In my practice, I draft confidentiality and non-competition agreements and litigate claims of breaches of those agreements.  In almost every agreement I either draft or review, there is a choice of law provision.  If I am drafting or editing the choice of law section, I do not just randomly select any state or a state... More
  • Supreme Court Agrees to Review Validity of Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements Last week, the Supreme Court granted petitions for certioriari in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, Ernst & Young v. Morris, and NLRB v. Murphy Oil USA.  All three cases involve clauses in arbitration agreements that require employees to waive their rights to pursue class and collective actions. In theory, the Supreme Court will resolve a split between federal circuits and determine if employees can be compelled to litigate claims individually rather than in a class or collective action. However, because Justice Scalia’s seat remains... More