Law and the Workplace

Category Archives: Workplace Policies and Procedures

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Paid Family and Medical Leave Benefits Become Available in Massachusetts on January 1st: Is Your Workplace Ready?

For Massachusetts employers, or employers with Massachusetts-based employees, Paid Family and Medical Leave (“PFML”) has been on the horizon for nearly two years. By now, you have notified your workforce about benefits and contributions, displayed a poster informing them of the same, determined the size of your workforce and who is a “covered individual,” begun … Continue Reading

[Podcast]: Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccinations

In this episode of The Proskauer Brief, partners Harris Mufson and Evandro Gigante discuss the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s recent guidance for employers regarding mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations. On December 16th, 2020, the EEOC issued updated guidance for employers in light of the FDA’s recent authorization of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use. Widespread vaccinations have been largely … Continue Reading

DC Council Passes One of the Broadest Bans on Non-Competes in the Country

Quick Hit:  On December 17, 2020, the Council of the District of Columbia passed the Ban on Non-Compete Agreements Amendment Act of 2020 (the “Act”), which, subject to certain very narrow exceptions, will “make void and unenforceable non-compete[s]” entered into after the effective date of the law.  The Act also prohibits employers from maintaining workplace … Continue Reading

December 31, 2020 Deadline Looms for Illinois Employers to Conduct Sexual Harassment Training

As we have previously noted, effective January 1, 2020, the Illinois Human Rights Act requires Illinois employers to provide employees with sexual harassment prevention training by December 31, 2020, and on at least an annual basis thereafter.  Such training must comport with the minimum requirements established by the Illinois Department of Human Rights’ (“IDHR”) model … Continue Reading

Seventh Circuit Clarifies Scope of Article III Standing Under Illinois BIPA

On November 17, 2020, the Seventh Circuit held that allegations that a defendant violated Section 15(a) of the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (“BIPA”), 740 ILCS § 14/1, et seq.—which requires an employer that collects biometric information from its employees to develop, publicly disclose and comply with a data-retention schedule and guidelines for permanent destruction … Continue Reading

NYU Labor Center Webinar: Re-Training America for the Future of Work

Proskauer partner Paul Salvatore will be participating in the NYU Labor Center Webinar: Re-Training America for the Future of Work. The webinar will take place virtually on Thursday, December 3rd from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM EDT. Leaders in government, academia and industry will explore policies needed to enhance the skills of workers to meet … Continue Reading

New York Court Dismisses Amazon Workers’ COVID-19 Health and Safety Claims

*** UPDATE: On November 24, 2020, the Plaintiffs in Palmer, et al. v. Amazon.Com, Inc., et al. filed a notice of appeal. The Plaintiffs appealed Judge Cogan’s order dismissing the case to the Second Circuit. We will continue to monitor this case and provide updates. *** On November 2, 2020, the Eastern District of New … Continue Reading

New York Releases Guidance and FAQs on Statewide Paid Sick Leave Law

New York State has released an informal guidance page, including frequently asked questions, regarding the newly enacted statewide paid sick leave law, which took effect on September 30, 2020. As we have previously reported, the law requires employers with New York employees to provide a certain amount of paid or unpaid sick leave to be … Continue Reading

Election Season and the Workplace, Part 2: Political Leave Laws

With Election Day just around the corner, we are highlighting some of the issues facing employers in a series of posts on election-related issues. In our first installment, we looked at employee protections around political speech and activity both in and outside the workplace. In this second installment, we’ll examine employees’ rights to take time … Continue Reading

[Podcast]: Recent Developments on California’s COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave Law

In this episode of The Proskauer Brief, partner Harris Mufson and associate Phil Lebel discuss recent legal developments in California, specifically a new supplemental paid sick leave law and coronavirus (COVID-19) exposure notification requirements. Tune in as we discuss steps employers can take to ensure compliance with these new requirements. Listen to the podcast.  … Continue Reading

Election Season and the Workplace, Part 1: Employee “Free Speech” and Political Activities

Hand dropping ballot into boxWith Election Day just around the corner, we’ll be highlighting some of the issues facing employers in a two-part series on elections and the workplace. In this first installment, we’ll look at employee protections around political speech and activity both in and outside the workplace. In Part 2, we’ll address statutory leave entitlements for employees … Continue Reading

Reminder: New York State Paid Sick Leave Law Takes Effect September 30

As we previously reported, the New York State paid sick leave law will take effect, and covered employees will begin accruing leave time, on September 30, 2020. However, employees may be restricted from utilizing accrued sick leave until January 1, 2021. As set forth in our previous blog: Employers with 4 or fewer employees and … Continue Reading

DCFMLA COVID-19 Leave Extended through October 9, 2020

Quick Hit:  The temporary expansion of the DC Family and Medical Leave Act to provide D.C. employees up to 16 weeks of unpaid, job-protected “COVID-19 leave” has been extended through October 9, 2020.   The D.C. Office of Human Rights has published an updated notice reflecting the extended effective date, which employers “must post and maintain… … Continue Reading

Maryland Employers: New Employment Laws Become Effective October 1, 2020

As we previously reported, earlier this year Maryland passed a number of employment laws that, among other things, prohibit use of facial recognition technology, wage history inquires and hairstyle discrimination, and revise the state’s mini-WARN act.  These laws will take effect on October 1, 2020.  For more detail on the new laws, see our original … Continue Reading

Intersection Between Return-to-School and FFCRA

As we have previously reported, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which remains in effect through December 31, 2020, provides, among other things, that eligible employees can take up to 12 weeks of FMLA leave if the employee is unable to work (or telework) due to a need for leave to care for their … Continue Reading

D.C. Requires Employers To Provide Paid and Unpaid COVID-19 Leave

Quick Hit:  Employees in the District of Columbia are currently eligible for paid and unpaid COVID-19 related leave under measures that temporarily expand the D.C. Family and Medical Leave Act (“DCFMLA”) and D.C. Accrued Sick and Safe Leave Act (“ASSLA”). Key Takeaway:  D.C. employers now must navigate an additional set of paid and unpaid leave … Continue Reading

Virginia Employers, Are You Ready? New Employment Laws Go Into Effect July 1, 2020

As we previously reported, this spring Virginia Governor Ralph Northam signed into law a number of new measures expanding protections for employees in the Commonwealth and providing enhanced mechanisms by which employees may bring claims against their employers for violations of those protections.  Many of these new laws become effective on July 1, 2020.  As … Continue Reading

DC’s Paid Family Leave Benefits Available July 1, 2020: What Employers Need to Know

On July 1, 2020, employees in DC will be able to begin taking Paid Family Leave (“PFL”) pursuant to the DC Paid Family Leave Act (the “Act”).  Here’s a quick primer on what employers need to know ahead of the program’s launch. Eligible Leave Employees who spend more than 50% of their work time in … Continue Reading

Hearing Scheduled On Proposed Amendments to Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave Law

On June 11, 2020, the Department of Family and Medical Leave (“DFML”) will hold a virtual public hearing on its recent proposed amendments to the final regulations pertaining to the Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave Law (“PFML”) issued in June 2019.  (Instructions for registering for the virtual hearing are available at this link).  A … Continue Reading

Illinois May Soon Require “Essential Employers” to Provide PPE for Workers

The Illinois House of Representatives recently introduced House Bill 5769, which would create the Illinois Personal Protective Equipment Responsibility Act (the “Act”).  The Act would require “essential employers” to provide personal protective equipment (“PPE”) to both employees and independent contractors.  The Act defines an “essential employer” as an employer engaged in an “essential business” as … Continue Reading

Maryland Employers: Get Ready For A Host Of New Employment Laws

During the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, the Maryland legislature passed over 600 pieces of legislation, many of which relate to employment issues.  Several of these bills, including ones that prohibit use of facial recognition technology, wage history inquiries and hairstyle discrimination, and revise the state’s mini-WARN act, recently became law when the deadline … Continue Reading

New Voting Leave Laws in New York State and Washington D.C.

New York State and Washington D.C. have enacted legislation regarding paid time off to vote. The details of these new laws are summarized below. New York Nestled into the FY 2020-21 NY state budget is a revision to the statewide time off to vote law, which was revised in April 2019 to increase paid voting … Continue Reading

Massachusetts Announces Four Phase Plan to Reopen

On Monday May 18, 2020, Governor Baker announced the first phase of his administration’s much-anticipated plan to reopen Massachusetts (the “Plan”), nearly eight weeks after first ordering non-essential businesses to close and advising residents to stay home in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. In describing the phased reopening, the Governor repeatedly emphasized that the coronavirus … Continue Reading
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