Despite recently extending a state of emergency due to COVID-19 through June 11, 2020, Maine Governor Janet Mills gave the green light for more businesses to open in all counties on June 1, 2020, as part of the second stage of the governor’s Restarting Maine’s Economy plan.
Articles About Maine Labor and Employment Law.
Maine has begun Stage 1 of a four-stage plan to reopen the Maine economy following the stay-at-home order issued in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Noncompete reform continues to crop up in New England. We previously wrote about comprehensive reform in Massachusetts late last year, and now three more states have passed legislation in recent weeks. All three states – Maine, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island – now prohibit employers from entering noncompetition agreements with low-wage employees, though the definition of “low wage” varies by state.
In recent weeks, Maine and New Hampshire each enacted a law prohibiting the use of noncompete agreements with lower wage earners. Shortly thereafter, on July 11, 2019, the Rhode Island legislature sent a similar bill to Governor Raimondo’s desk for signature.
On June 27, 2019, Maine Governor Janet Mills signed into law L.D. 666, which extends existing protections for pregnant and nursing employees in Maine. The act, entitled “An Act to Protect Pregnant Workers,” creates broad protections for workers, covering any limitation of an employee’s ability to perform their job due to pregnancy, child birth, or related medical conditions including lactation. The act also amends existing provisions of 5 M.R.S.A. § 4572-A to make the section’s protections gender-neutral.
The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which goes into effect January 1, 2020, is considered the most robust state privacy law in the United States. The CCPA seems to have spurred a flood of similar legislative proposals on the state level, and started a shift in the consumer privacy law landscape. Many of these proposals end up dying somewhere along the rigorous legislative process, but in the last few weeks both Maine and Nevada signed into law bills that, although much more narrow than the CCPA, certainly bear resemblance.
State and local leave laws are changing weekly and sometimes even daily! For the second time this month, Maine is adjusting its leave laws. Employers in Maine will soon be required to provide veterans with time away from work to attend scheduled appointments at Department of Veterans Affairs medical facilities. If paid leave is available to the veteran, he or she must be permitted to use paid leave for the absence. If a veteran has no available paid leave, then the employer must allow the veteran to take unpaid leave. Veterans are required to give their employer notice of the appointment “as soon as reasonably possible.” The law goes into effect on September 19, 2019.
Maine Governor Janet Mills has signed into law “An Act Authorizing Earned Employee Leave,” the first law in the nation to allow employees to use mandated paid leave for any reason. The new law, signed on May 28, will take effect on January 1, 2021. Approximately 85 percent of Maine’s private sector employees will receive paid leave under the new law.
On May 28, 2019, Maine Governor Janet Mills (D) signed into law a groundbreaking new statute requiring Maine employers (even small businesses) to provide paid time off beginning January 1, 2021. The law is the first of its kind in the nation to require paid time off, for any reason, including vacation time. Unfortunately, for employers, the law is short on specifics, leaving it to the state labor department to – hopefully – issue rules that will assist employers with many open questions about the their rights and obligations under the act.
You generally know the drill: a plaintiff has limited time to file suit. Generally, the statutory period begins when the plaintiff knows or reasonably should know that she has been harmed and that the defendant caused that harm.
The Maine legislature recently passed An Act Authorizing Earned Employee Leave. If Governor Mills, who has been vocal in her support of the bill, signs the bill into law, it would take effect on January 1, 2021.
On April 12, 2019, Maine’s Governor, Janet Mills (D), signed L.D. 278, a pay equity bill titled “An Act Regarding Pay Equality.” The law amends existing pay equity legislation and generally prohibits employer inquiries into the salary history of prospective employees until after an offer of employment has been made. Maine is the latest state in New England to pass legislation imposing this prohibition, following Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Vermont.
Maine’s new recreational marijuana law permits employers to enforce workplace policies restricting the use of marijuana and to take disciplinary action in accordance with those workplace policies.
Effective February 1, 2018, a provision in Maine’s recreational marijuana law impacts workplace drug testing. As we previously blogged here, the law prohibits employers from taking adverse employment actions for off-premises marijuana use, as of February 1, 2018. On its face, this law effectively prevents Maine employers from testing for marijuana for pre-employment purposes, and has other impacts as well.
A provision of Maine’s recreational marijuana law prohibits employers from taking adverse employment actions for off-premises marijuana use, as of February 1, 2018. This law effectively prevents Maine employers from testing for marijuana for pre-employment purposes. The law also affects employers who employ employees subject to federal drug and alcohol testing regulations as well as those employers who are exempt from complying with Maine’s drug testing law.