Published: February 16, 2018

On February 15, 2018, the Economic Matters Committee of the Maryland House of Delegates voted 12-11 to reject a bill that would have delayed the implementation of Maryland’s new sick and safe leave law, known as the Maryland Healthy Working Families Act, until July 1, 2018. Advocates of delaying the implementation sought more time for employers and the State to prepare for the significant changes in leave policies. Instead, the law, which had already gone into effect on February 11, 2018, will remain in effect as is.

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Published: February 2, 2018

On January 29, 2018, in Tze-Kit Mui v. Massachusetts Port Auth., No. SJC-12296 (Mass. Jan. 29, 2018), the highest court in Massachusetts ruled that accrued, but unused, sick leave does not constitute “wages” under the state’s Wage Act. In so holding, the Court vacated the decision of the lower court that required an employer to pay a departing employee for his unused sick leave.

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Published: January 22, 2018

Now former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie spared no expense on ink his last day in office when he signed over fifty bills into law covering a wide array of topics with far reaching impact on the state. Of equal importance are bills he chose not to sign, utilizing his “pocket veto” on over forty additional pieces of legislation that had made to his desk. By not acting on these bills, he functionally vetoed them as they must now begin their journey to the Governor’s desk anew.

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Published: January 19, 2018

On Friday, January 12, 2018, the Maryland General Assembly enacted the Maryland Healthy Working Families Act over Governor Larry Hogan’s veto. Under the new law, employers with more than 15 full-time employees must provide their employees up to 40 hours of paid leave annually, which is earned at the rate of 1 hour of leave for every 30 hours worked. The law further permits employees to carryover a maximum of 40 hours of unused leave each year, but limits their use of the leave to no more than 64 hours in a single year.

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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.

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Published: November 22, 2017

It is impossible to turn on the television or open your web browser without seeing the headlines stolen by another story of sexual harassment. Now more than ever, employers must be vigilant in ensuring that they have workplace policies and procedures addressing all forms of workplace conduct.

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Published: November 15, 2017

Last Tuesday, a former JPMorgan wealth manager was awarded $1.13 million by a jury in the Southern District of New York for her claims under the whistleblower provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. Nonetheless, the staggering victory may be short-lived. Just hours after the verdict, the judge presiding over the case, Judge Denise Cote, revealed her intention to toss the verdict based on the jurors’ prejudice against the bank.

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Published: October 31, 2017

As sexual harassment becomes the subject of national conversation, some cities, such as Chicago, are making significant changes to laws in an effort to reduce harassment. A recent survey of hotels in the Chicagoland area revealed that more than half of women surveyed were sexually harassed or assaulted while at their job. As a result, on October 11, 2017, the Chicago City Council passed an ordinance aimed at protecting hotel workers.

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Published: August 15, 2017

Last week, the Third Circuit denied a Pennsylvania-plaintiff’s application to have her retaliation claim against her former employer reinstated. The plaintiff, Mindy Caplan, a former district manager for the retail chain Victoria’s Secret, claimed she was terminated “for opposing racial discrimination in society” after posting two racially-charged pictures on Facebook. Throughout 2014, the plaintiff identified herself as a Victoria’s Secret district manager on Facebook, which was accessible to other Victoria’s Secret employees and the public.

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