Law and the Workplace

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New York State Issues Guidance on COVID-19 Quarantine Leave Law

On March 25, 2020, New York State published Frequently Asked Questions and other guidance regarding the state’s recently enacted Covid-19 Paid Sick Leave Law and expansions to New York’s Paid Family Leave Law (PFL) and Disability Benefit Law. This bill was signed into law on March 18 and became effective immediately as part of a … Continue Reading

Massachusetts Orders All Non-Essential Workers to Stay Home

Seal of MassachusettsUPDATE:  On March 31, 2020, Governor Baker announced that Massachusetts’ order closing non-essential businesses and the Commonwealth’s stay at home advisory will remain in effect until May 4, 2020.  The orders were previously scheduled to be in effect through April 7. *  *  * Beginning Tuesday, March 24, 2020 at 12:00 PM, Massachusetts will join … Continue Reading

New York State Mandates That Non-Essential Workers Must Stay Home

Beginning Sunday, March 22, 2020 at 8:00 PM, in accordance with Executive Order 202.8 issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, only essential businesses and not-for-profit entities in New York State may utilize an in-person workforce. This extends Governor Cuomo’s previous Executive Order 202.7, which required all businesses and not-for-profit entities not otherwise deemed essential to (1) … Continue Reading

New York State Enacts Coronavirus Response Bill Including Paid Sick Time and Other Statutory Benefits

*** New York State has issued additional guidance on the statewide Coronavirus leave law.  More information about this guidance can be found on our blog post here. *** On March 18, 2020, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law a statewide Coronavirus response bill that immediately provides employees with sick leave and job protection in … Continue Reading

SJC Finds Commissions Lost Due to Retaliation Are Subject to Trebling

In a February 12, 2020 decision, Parker v. EnerNOC, Inc., SJC-12703, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court held that the full commission which would have been due to an employee had she not been retaliated against and terminated is a “lost wage” eligible to be trebled under the Wage Act. While employed by EnerNOC, the plaintiff … Continue Reading

New Jersey to Consider Mandatory Anti-Harassment Training and Other Significant Expansions of the NJ Law Against Discrimination

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy has unveiled a sweeping legislative proposal regarding harassment in the workplace, as well as in housing, public accommodations, and business relationships. The proposal would amend the NJ Law Against Discrimination (“NJLAD”) in numerous significant ways. The proposed legislation to a large extent mirrors that which has been introduced in several … Continue Reading

New York City Extends Human Rights Law Protections and Training Requirements to Freelancers and Independent Contractors

NYC Commission on Human RightsEffective January 11, 2020, the New York City Human Rights Law (“NYCHRL”) has been amended to expand protections under the law to freelancers and independent contractors.  Significantly, this includes the requirement that certain contractors now complete annual sexual harassment prevention training in the same manner as covered employees.  Contractors also are now eligible for reasonable … Continue Reading

Pennsylvania Supreme Court: Fluctuating Workweek Method of Overtime Pay is Unlawful

On November 20, 2019, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that the fluctuating workweek (“FWW”) method of calculating overtime pay owed to salaried workers is prohibited by state law. Chevalier v. General Nutrition Centers Inc., Pennsylvania Supreme Court, No. 22-WAP-2018. Under the FWW method of pay, an overtime-eligible employee receives a fixed salary for all hours … Continue Reading

NYC Commission on Human Rights Issues Enforcement Guidance on National Origin and Immigration Status Discrimination

NYC Commission on Human RightsThe New York City Commission on Human Rights has issued new enforcement guidance on discrimination based on actual or perceived national origin or immigration status in employment, as well as in housing and public accommodations.  While enforcement guidance does not have the same force of law as a statute or formal regulations, it provides significant … Continue Reading

New York State to Require Reasonable Accommodation for Victims of Domestic Violence

Leave of absence formNew York Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed into law amendments to the New York State Human Rights Law (NYSHRL) that expand protections for employees who are victims of domestic violence.  The amendments will take effect on November 18, 2019. While the NYSHRL has long prohibited discrimination against victims of domestic violence, the amendments expressly state … Continue Reading

New York State Significantly Expands Workplace Anti-Discrimination Protections

On August 12, 2019, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law significant expansions to workplace anti-discrimination protections in New York State. As we previously reported in detail, the new legislation includes numerous measures regarding discrimination and harassment in all forms (not just sexual harassment) in the workplace.  The signing of the bill triggers the countdown to … Continue Reading

New Jersey Expands Medical Marijuana Protections

On July 2, 2019, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed into law the Jake Honig Compassionate Use Medical Cannabis Act (the “Act”), which amends the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act (“CUMMA”) to provide greater clarity on the legal protections for both employers and employees. CUMMA, which was signed into law on January 18th, … Continue Reading

New Jersey Becomes the Latest Jurisdiction to Enact Ban on Salary History Inquiries

The push to eliminate inquiries into job applicants’ salary history continues, as New Jersey has enacted a statewide law that will restrict employers from obtaining and utilizing applicants’ salary history information during the hiring process. The new law, which will take effect on January 1, 2020, will make it an unlawful employment practice for any … Continue Reading

California Enacts Law Prohibiting Hairstyle Discrimination … with New York and New Jersey Close Behind

UPDATE: Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the New York bill into law on July 12, 2019 (effective immediately). As we have reported before, California is set to become the first state to prohibit employers from discriminating based upon hairstyle. Last week, Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law the “CROWN Act” (Create a Respectful and Open Workplace … Continue Reading

The Clock Is Ticking: Less Than Three Months Until the NYS Deadline for Mandatory Sexual Harassment Prevention Training

As we find ourselves in the midst of summer, employers in New York should keep an eye on the upcoming October 9th deadline for providing anti-harassment training to all employees. As we previously reported, effective October 9, 2018, all New York State employers are required to adopt written sexual harassment prevention policies and institute annual … Continue Reading

Connecticut Expands Sexual Harassment Training and Notice Requirements

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont recently signed into law the Time’s Up Act (the “Act”), which amends existing state law to impose greater sexual harassment training and notice requirements on employers. Training Requirements Currently, Connecticut law requires employers with 50 or more employees to provide two hours of sexual harassment training to all supervisory employees. While … Continue Reading

New York State Advances Bill That Would Allow Liens Against Employers For Unpaid Wage Claims

Paying WagesUPDATE – On December 31, 2019, Governor Andrew Cuomo vetoed the bill; however, he indicated that he intends to propose replacement legislation in 2020 to allow victims of wage theft to use “any and all assets, even personal assets, of the bad actor” to satisfy a judgement. The New York state legislature has passed a bill … Continue Reading

New York State to Expand Protections Against Discriminatory Pay Practices

UPDATE: Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law on July 10, 2019.  The law will take effect on October 8, 2019. The New York State legislature has passed a bill that, if signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo, will expand pay protections by requiring employers to provide employees with equal pay for “substantially similar” work … Continue Reading

New York State to Enact Ban on Salary History Inquiries

UPDATE: Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law on July 10, 2019.  The law will take effect on January 6, 2020. In a continuation of its recent legislative push to expand the reach of anti-discrimination laws, New York State is set to be the latest jurisdiction to prohibit employers from asking job applicants and … Continue Reading

New York State Set to Further Expand Protections Against Workplace Harassment

**UPDATE: Governor Cuomo signed both S.6577 and S.6594 into law on August 12, 2019. New York State lawmakers have approved broad legislation that will lower the burden on plaintiffs seeking to prove claims of workplace harassment under the New York State Human Rights Law (NYSHRL), as well as extend the statute of limitations and expand potential damages for such claims. The bill also expands coverage under the NYSHRL and broadens existing limitations on … Continue Reading

Final Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave Regulations Published and Other PFML Updates

Leave of absence formThe Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave (“DFML”) has posted the much-anticipated final regulations regarding Massachusetts’ Paid Family and Medical Leave law (“PFML”). The final regulations come on the heels of Massachusetts lawmakers’ recent extension of key PFML compliance dates. While the final regulations are materially unchanged from the previous draft issued March 29th, … Continue Reading

Connecticut to Enact Generous Paid Family and Medical Leave Law

Leave of absence formConnecticut is set to become the latest state to join the paid family and medical leave bandwagon, enacting what is set to be one of the most generous laws in the country.  The Act Concerning Paid Family and Medical Leave (the “Act”) was passed by both houses of the state legislature and is presently before Governor … Continue Reading

Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave Deadlines Extended

With the original July 1, 2019 deadline for numerous provisions of the Commonwealth’s Paid Family and Medical Leave (“PFML”) legislation approaching in mere weeks, Massachusetts lawmakers have now issued a much-welcomed enforcement extension. The extensions comes as employers in the Commonwealth worked to comply with the new law.  The amended legislation, announced earlier this week … Continue Reading

Maine Becomes First State to Require Paid Leave for Any Reason

Leave of absence formMaine’s Governor Janet Mills has signed into law an Act Authorizing Earned Employee Leave (the “Act”), which will require covered employers to provide employees with up to 40 hours of paid personal leave per calendar year. Unlike other paid family and sick leave laws that have been enacted around the country, Maine’s law would be … Continue Reading
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