The U.S. Equal Employment Commission (“EEOC”) has recently updated its Technical Assistance Questions and Answers, “What You Should Know About COVID-10 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws,” (“Q&A)  and taken the position that employers may only screen employees for COVID-19 if it is a business necessity that is justified by “current pandemic circumstances and individual workplace circumstances” because a COVID-19 viral test is a medical examination within the meaning of the ADA.
Continue Reading EEOC States Employers Must Show Business Necessity to Test Workers for COVID-19

On December 13, 2021, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) issued its long-awaited decision determining that the Massachusetts Independent Contractor Statute, G.L. c. 149, § 148B (“Independent Contractor Statute”), which establishes the three-pronged “ABC” test used to classify workers as independent contractors or employees – and provides for a rebuttable presumption that workers are employees unless the purported employer proves otherwise – is not the applicable standard to determine whether an entity is a joint employer.
Continue Reading Massachusetts High Court Rules “ABC” Test Is Inapplicable To Joint Employer Status

On October 20, 2021, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“DFEH”) issued a press release to announce its plans to use unspecified technology to conduct online searches for statements in job advertisements that violate the Fair Chance Act (“FCA”). According to the DFEH, during a one-day review, it was able to locate over 500 job advertisements that violated the FCA because they stated that the employer would not consider job applicants with criminal records.
Continue Reading California DFEH Embraces Tech to Seek Out Fair Chance Act Violations

In an April 28, 2021 decision, the Ninth Circuit determined that that the application of California’s ABC test (also known as AB-5) to motor carriers is not preempted by the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994. The ABC test is a judicially-created independent contractor test that was ultimately codified via AB-5
Continue Reading Ninth Circuit Rules California’s ABC Test is Not Preempted by the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act

For decades, most federal courts have held the view that private settlements of Fair Labor Standards Act claims are unenforceable unless they are approved by the Department of Labor or a court.  However, some federal courts have recently begun to challenge this long-held view and have taken a more flexible approach that treats FLSA settlements no differently than settlements or releases involving other employment law claims.
Continue Reading Fifth Circuit Holds that Private FLSA Settlement With Union Bars Future FLSA Claims

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

The California Court of Appeals for the Second District evaluated the validity of unlimited vacation policies in a recent decision. Unlimited vacation policies operate how one might expect: instead of having a specific number of hours vest that the employee can use to take paid time off, an unlimited policy provides that the employee can take as much vacation per year as they would like to subject to company approval. In California, when vacation vests, it is treated as wages at termination and must be paid out. Since unlimited vacation does not vest, there is no payment due at termination.
Continue Reading Unlimited Vacation Policies in California – New Decision

The Ninth Circuit recently overturned a district court’s grant of class certification on a wage statement claim under California Labor Code §226 because there were no “real-world consequences” stemming from the alleged misidentification of the employer’s name on the wage statement.
Continue Reading Ninth Circuit Strikes Down California Wage Statement Class Action for Plaintiff’s Failure to Show “Real World Consequences” to Establish Standing