Published: January 16, 2018

Employers and employees alike may see big changes in the upcoming year regarding state laws dealing with sexual assault and harassment in the workplace. Following the allegations against former film producer Harvey Weinstein and the rise of the #MeToo movement, the legislative floodgates have opened as a number of states have proposed bills attempting to eliminate sexual harassment in the workplace.

. . . . . .

Published: January 9, 2018

On January 5, 2018, the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) abandoned its six-factor test for assessing whether a worker is an intern or an employee, for purposes of coverage under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). The six-factor test was conjunctive, and difficult to apply—particularly the factor that the employer gains “no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern.”

. . . . . .

Published: August 31, 2017

In a long awaited decision, a Texas federal judge struck down the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) overtime rule finding that the Department of Labor (“DOL”) exceeded its delegated authority. The rule, which was blocked by injunction in November 2016, was set to raise the white collar exemption minimum salary requirement from $23,660 per year to $47,476 per year effective December 1, 2016.
 

. . . . . .

Published: August 24, 2017

We previously reported that AARP was attempting to stop the EEOC’s final wellness program rules under the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) from taking effect on January 1, 2017.  AARP’s motion was denied by the D.C. District Court.

. . . . . .

Published: July 24, 2017

In an opinion issued July 19, the Second Circuit vacated a jury verdict in favor of the employer, ruling that the district court judge had instructed the jury to use an incorrect standard of proof under the Family and Medical Leave Act. Woods v. START Treatment & Recovery Centers, Inc., No. 16-1318 (2d Cir. July 19, 2017). The correct causation standard, the Court held, was not whether the employer would not have fired her “but for” her exercise of rights under the FMLA.

. . . . . .

Published: July 20, 2017

In a decision issued July 14, 2017, the Third Circuit clarified that to prevail on workplace harassment claims, plaintiffs must show that the conduct was “severe or pervasive”—not “severe and pervasive” or “pervasive and regular”—such that one racial slur was sufficient to state a claim for harassment under Section 1981.

. . . . . .

Published: July 13, 2017

On July 3, 2017, the Eighth Circuit overturned a National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) decision finding that a Jimmy John’s franchisee, MikLin Enterprises, Inc. (“MikLin”) violated the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) when it discharged and disciplined employees who publicly distributed posters suggesting that consumers may become sick from eating sandwiches made by sick workers. The posters, which were distributed during a union organizing drive, were part of a campaign to demand paid sick leave.

. . . . . .