Historically, bank executives have faced civil liability for breach of contract and violations of state laws governing the misappropriation of trade secrets for misusing their employer’s confidential and proprietary information. However, a recent “notice of intent to prohibit” issued by the Federal Reserve indicates that bank executives may now face a much harsher consequence than mere civil liability for misappropriating their employers’ information — namely, a ban from the business of banking altogether.
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The presence of alcohol in offices has ebbed and flowed over time and largely depended on the type of business, from drink carts in advertising agencies à la Mad Men to keg refrigerators at startups. The once popular office perk may or may not be waning, but the number of companies addressing the issue and the attention those decisions are generating is certainly increasing.
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In Hernandez v. Pacific Bell Co., a California court held that employees who drive between their homes and a client worksite (in this case, a customer’s residence) using a company vehicle under the company’s voluntary vehicle take-home program need not be compensated for the commute time. 
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In the recent election, Californians voted to add an employer-friendly provision to the Labor Code that allows emergency ambulance workers to be on-call during breaks.  California is one of 24 states that allow voters to initiate laws through the petition process.
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Voters in Michigan, Utah and Missouri passed marijuana-related ballot measures in the November 2018 elections.  Each of these measures recognizes that marijuana remains a controlled substance, and illegal, under federal law, and that authorized users, growers, physicians, and any others who properly support or participate in these programs will be shielded from liability only under state law.
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In a new class action filed recently against a hospital housekeeping company, employees allege their employer’s fingerprint scanning time-tracking system runs afoul of privacy laws.  The Pennsylvania-based company Xanitos Inc. now faces the lawsuit in federal court in Illinois, claiming the company violated the state’s Biometric Information Privacy Act. 
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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.  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.
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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.
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