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ten most recent federal employment law articles Ten Most Recent Federal Articles

Third Circuit Upholds the Motor Carrier Exemption for Drivers Who Did Not, But Reasonably Could Have Been Expected to, Cross State Lines

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • May 21, 2015
Are drivers of a motor carrier who rarely or never drive the carrier's interstate routes covered by the motor carrier exemption of the Fair Labor Standards Act? Yes, according to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Resch v. Krapf's Coaches, Inc., Case No. 14-3679 (3d Cir. May 12, 2015).

USCIS Publishes Long-Awaited Filing Guidance for H-4 EAD Applications

Ogletree Deakins • May 21, 2015
On May 20, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published long-awaited information to help eligible H-4 dependent spouses apply for employment authorization documents (commonly known as “EAD cards”) under the Employment Authorization for Certain H-4 Dependent Spouses final rule. Under this rule, which goes into effect on May 26, 2015, an H-4 dependent spouse is eligible to apply for an EAD card if the principal H-1B status holder is the beneficiary of an approved I-140 petition or has already been granted H-1B status under the American Competitiveness in the 21st Century Act of 2000 (AC21) Sections 106(a) and (b). AC21 permits extensions of H-1B status beyond the usual six-year maximum period when the H-1B holder is the beneficiary of an approved I-140 employment-based immigrant petition or 365 days or more have passed since the filing of an I-140 immigrant visa petition or PERM (ETA Form 9089) labor certification application on behalf of that beneficiary.

Changes to Insurance Requirements for J-1 Visa Exchange Programs

Ogletree Deakins • May 21, 2015
In October of 2014, the U.S. Department of State revised Subpart A of the exchange visitor regulations. Changes to the reporting and English language proficiency requirements for exchange programs went into effect on January 5, 2015. Another major change that will take effect on May 15, 2015, involves increases to the required health insurance levels for all exchange visitors coming in on J-1 or J-2 visas. For programs beginning on or after May 15, the following insurance levels will be required

NLRB Continues to Expand Employee Protections Under Federal Labor Law

Franczek Radelet P.C • May 21, 2015
In Sabo, Inc. the National Labor Relations Board (Board) found that the employer, a vending machine company, violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) when it fired an employee who had expressed concerns about job security to a co-worker. Although the employer claimed it fired the employee for spreading gossip about her co-worker, the Board found, in a 2-1 decision, that the employer fired the employee because she engaged in protected, concerted activity which, in this case, consisted of the employee’s discussion with her co-worker about a feared job loss.

Supreme Court: Plan Fiduciaries Have a Continuing Obligation to Monitor Investment Prudence

Shaw Valenza LLP • May 20, 2015
WARNING: Do not read this while operating machinery or driving, if you are pregnant, or might become pregnant. Yes, it's an ERISA case. But it will keep your plan administrator up at night.

EEOC Officials Field Pointed Questions During Senate Committee Hearing

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • May 20, 2015
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's enforcement strategies and ligation history came under fire from Republican members of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions on Tuesday. During the hearing to examine the agency's recent activities, EEOC Chair Jenny R. Yang and General Counsel P. David Lopez responded to a variety of questions about the agency's charge backlog, recent proposed rule governing wellness programs under the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the use of commissioner's charges and directed investigations to pursue alleged discrimination when no claimant has come forward.

EEOC Launches Digital Charge System Pilot Program

XpertHR • May 20, 2015
The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has announced that it will launch a pilot program to electronically transmit documents between the EEOC and employers regarding discrimination charges. The program, called ACT Digital, will be implemented in 11 of its 53 offices.

Has Human Resources Lost Its Edge in a Tech-driven World?

Knowledge@Wharton (Reg Required) • May 20, 2015
Some decades ago, HR was widely considered one of the best fields for ambitious people to pursue their careers at such high-profile companies as IBM, Pepsi, GE and AT&T. During a recent Wharton Global Human Resources Executive Summit, Wharton management professor Peter Cappelli noted that surveys taken during the 1950s showed that HR was viewed as “the most glamorous sector.” In many of the prestigious firms where people stayed for life, he said, HR people “decided everything,” including “where you were promoted. They were really important.”

Temporary Suspension of USCIS 'Premium Processing' for H-1B Extensions

Ogletree Deakins • May 20, 2015
On May 19, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced a temporary suspension of its “premium processing” program as it relates to H-1B extensions in the United States. The suspension will be in effect from May 26, 2015, until July 27, 2015. Premium processing is an optional USCIS program whereby, for an additional government fee of $1,225, the USCIS will adjudicate petitions in 15 calendar days instead of the usual time period of several months. USCIS indicates that this measure will allow it to focus on implementation of the H-4 EAD final rule, which goes into effect on May 26, 2015.

Court Extends Proportionality Principle to Duty to Preserve

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • May 20, 2015
In Lord Abbett Mun. Income Fund., Inc v. Asami, No. C-12-03694 DMR (N.D. Cal. Oct. 29, 2014), United State Magistrate Judge Donna M. Ryu granted the plaintiff’s motion for permission to no longer preserve computer workstations that were peripheral to discovery. The court extended and applied Rule 26(b) proportionality to the issue of ESI preservation, and gave dispositive weight to the plaintiff's sample-based review of the contents of the devices.