The EEOC recently released a report highlighting the Commission’s efforts to combat sexual harassment in the past year.  The report, which includes preliminary data for the fiscal year ending on September 30, 2018, illustrates that the Commission has been, in the EEOC’s words, “vigorously enforcing the law” in the wake of the #MeToo movement.

Continue Reading EEOC Report Profiles Its “Vigorous” Efforts to Combat Workplace Harassment

The combination of a quirky procedural posture and broad language used by the Supreme Court in 1941 have left Home Depot trapped in a North Carolina state court defending against a class action, despite the removal provisions of the Class Action Fairness Act.  On September 27, 2018, the Supreme Court granted certiorari to decide whether CAFA authorizes removal of class action counterclaims when its requirements are otherwise met.

Continue Reading Supreme Court to Address CAFA Removal of Counterclaims

According to the National Human Trafficking Hotline, California has had the highest number of reported cases of human trafficking in the country over the last six years, followed by Texas and Florida.  Human trafficking victims include men and women, adults and children, and foreign nationals and United States citizens. Recent studies indicate that hotels and motels are common locations for sex trafficking.

In light of these startling statistics, now is a good time for employers to become informed about new legislation associated with human trafficking crimes and to implement or update their anti-human trafficking policies and practices. Continue Reading New California Legislation Imposes Human Trafficking Training Requirements on Hotel and Transit Employers

The NLRB’s Office of the General Counsel recently issued an internal directive regarding the manner in which NLRB Regions prosecute duty of fair representation charges against unions.  Under the National Labor Relations Act, unions have a duty of fair representation to the members of the bargaining unit it represents by engaging in conduct that is not arbitrary, discriminatory or in bad faith, particularly with regard to the processing of worker grievances.  Board law has established (and unions typically offer as a defense) that “mere negligence” alone does not amount to arbitrary conduct that would serve to breach the duty of fair representation.

Continue Reading NLRB General Counsel Elevates Standard for Unions’ Duty of Fair Representation

Sexual harassment is a recurring theme in the bills signed into law by California Governor Jerry Brown on September 30, 2018.  These new laws, which take effect on January 1, 2019, continue the trend of expanding protections for California employees.

 Hush-Money – Three of the bills signed by Governor Brown on September 30 target settlement agreements that prohibit disclosure of sexual harassment claims. AB 3109 makes void and unenforceable any provision in a contract or settlement agreement that waives a party’s right to testify in an administrative, legislative, or judicial proceeding concerning alleged criminal conduct or sexual harassment.  SB 820 prohibits settlement agreements from including a provision that prevents the disclosure of factual information related to claims of sexual assault and sexual harassment.  However, this bill does not prohibit confidentiality of the settlement amount.  SB 1300 voids any agreement in which an employee forfeits his or her right to disclose unlawful acts in the workplace, including acts of sexual harassment.

Redefining The Hostile Work Environment Standard – SB 1300 also declares that a single incident of harassing conduct could be sufficient to create a triable issue regarding the existence of a hostile work environment in certain circumstances. Continue Reading California Enacts New Sexual Harassment Laws

As we previously reported, the United States Supreme Court held this past Term in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis that class action waivers in arbitration agreements do not violate the National Labor Relations Act.  In the wake of Epic Systems, courts have found that class action waivers are likewise permissible under the FLSA.  These cases make clear that class action waivers are here to stay.

Continue Reading Class Wide Arbitrations – Who Gets to Decide?

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) issued a new “A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act” (“FCRA”)  (“Summary of Rights”) form on September 12, 2018.  This form replaces the previous version issued on November 12, 2012, and is expected to be implemented by employers on September 21, 2018.

Continue Reading New Compliance Requirements for FCRA Background Checks

The OFCCP vowed things would change after President Trump’s election.  It is making good on that promise.  The Agency issued three new Directives in the last two weeks, following four others earlier this year.  One of these Directives was long-awaited new guidance on pay analyses, replacing Directive 307.  And, the OFCCP has a new Acting Director, Craig Leen (see our earlier post for the exciting news about the immediate-past Director, Ondray Harris, joining our firm).

The good news for contractors is that the OFCCP’s actions are almost all pro-business, aimed at making the Agency more transparent, objective, and efficient. Continue Reading The OFCCP’s Been Busy — 9 New Directives This Year, Largely Pro-Business

Employers who operate in New York State and City are likely aware of the new sexual harassment laws that are starting to take effect.  Many companies have already revised their sexual harassment policies to comply with the new laws, but now face the hurdle of complying with the sexual harassment training requirements under both the State and City laws.

While there is overlap between the State and City requirements, there are differences that employers should note. Continue Reading Deadlines Rapidly Approaching To Meet New York Sexual Harassment Training Requirements