On September 10, 2020, the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts issued a Memorandum and Order granting summary judgment in favor of a franchisor in response to claims by a purported class of franchisees that they were not truly independent contractors, but employees of the franchisor. The main issue addressed in the case was whether specific federal legal requirements that are imposed upon franchisors trump the general Massachusetts independent contractor classification statute.
Continue Reading Massachusetts District Court Rejects Employee Classification for Franchisees

On August 3, 2020, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York struck down portions of the DOL’s Final Rule regarding who qualifies for COVID-19 emergency paid sick leave under the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act, collectively referred to at the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. Of particular importance to employers, the Court invalidated two provisions of the DOL’s Final Rule pertaining to: (1) conditioning leave on the availability of work and (2) the need to obtain employer consent prior to taking leave on an intermittent basis.
Continue Reading Federal Court Strikes Down Portions of Department of Labor’s Final Rule On COVID-19 Leave, Expands Coverage

Virginia became the first state in the country to pass a workplace safety standard specific to COVID-19 on July 15.  It includes hazard assessment, communication and training requirements, depending on the types of tasks employees perform at work.
Continue Reading Virginia Passes First-in-the-Nation COVID-19 Safety Standard – What it Means for Your Workplace

As part of Virginia’s overhaul of its labor and employment laws, the Commonwealth enacted Virginia Senate Bill 712, which amended the Virginia Human Rights Act to require covered employers to reasonably accommodate the known limitations of an employee as it relates to pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions, unless such an accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the employer.
Continue Reading Virginia’s Pregnancy Accommodation Law Will Require Most Employers to Update Their Policies

Due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), many San Francisco businesses have closed in order to contain the spread of the pandemic, resulting in declining revenues and widespread business interruption.  These economic conditions have led to employee layoffs across San Francisco.  As San Francisco employers work to restore their business operations in the wake of COVID-19, they should be aware of new rules that may affect how they rebuild their workforce. 
Continue Reading New Emergency Ordinance Requires San Francisco Employers to Guarantee Reemployment for Certain Employees Laid Off Due to COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed employers to an influx of novel employment law issues.  Many employers already have experienced an uptick in related internal complaints or litigation. We identify five particular employment law liabilities employers may be exposed to once the dust settles from the pandemic.
Continue Reading Top Five Employment Law Liabilities Facing Employers Post-Pandemic

Many employers will need all hands on deck once shelter-in place orders are lifted. In a perfect world, employees would return to the workplace and seamlessly divide their vacation requests throughout the remainder of the year. In reality, employees may immediately seek to take time off, causing an influx of overlapping vacation requests.
Continue Reading Viewpoint: Minimize Vacation Scheduling Conflicts in the Pandemic

In a 6-3 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination based on an employee’s sexual orientation and/or transgendered status. 
Continue Reading BREAKING: The U.S. Supreme Court Holds That Title VII Protects LGBTQ Employees

Virginia has enacted several new labor and employment laws that are poised to dramatically change the legal landscape for employers in Virginia, including enacting “ban the box” legislation for simple possession of marijuana. 
Continue Reading Virginia Enacts “Ban the Box” Legislation for Marijuana Possession Arrests, Charges, and Convictions