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ten most recent state employment law articles Ten Most Recent State Law Articles

Puerto Rico Supreme Court Sets Standard to Apply the Successor Liability Doctrine

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • March 15, 2018
The Puerto Rico Supreme Court (“PRSC”) recently issued an Opinion in the case of Roldán Flores v. M. Cuebas, 2018 TSPR 18, 199 D.P.R. __ (Feb. 6, 2018), in which it addressed again the requirements for applying the “successor liability doctrine.”1 The PRSC held that prior to applying the successor liability doctrine, courts must first determine whether the prior owner/employer had any legal obligations or committed an illegal act with respect to the plaintiff-employee. If there was no employment obligation or illegal act attributable to the prior owner/employer, then there is no need to examine or apply the successor liability doctrine. In the context of unjust dismissal claims, the effect of the PRSC’s holding is that when there is a complete closing of operations, which is considered just cause for termination under Act No. 80 of May 30, 1976 (“Act 80”),2 there is no need to examine the applicability of the successor liability doctrine as there is no illegal act for which the acquiring entity could be held liable.

UPDATE - Cal/OSHA Hotel Housekeeping Injury Standard Effective July 1, 2018

Fisher Phillips • March 15, 2018
As we reported in January, after nearly six years of discussion and debate, the Cal/OSHA Standards Board (Board) approved a standard on “Hotel Housekeeping Musculoskeletal Injury Prevention.” The final regulation was recently approved by the Office of Administrative Law and will be effective July 1, 2018.

Colorado Supreme Court Clarifies the Statute of Limitations under the Colorado Wage Act, Closing the Door on Stale Claims

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • March 15, 2018
The Colorado Supreme Court recently clarified the applicable statute of limitations for wage claims in the State of Colorado.1 In Hernandez v. Ray Domenico Farms, Inc., No. No. 17SA77, 2018 WL 1146468 (Colo. Mar. 5, 2018) (“Hernandez”), the court held that claims under Colorado’s Wage Claim Act (the “Wage Act”) must be brought within two or three years of when the wages first become due and payable, overruling several decisions that held terminated employees could make a claim for any unpaid wages earned during the entire course of their employment.

California Proposes New Regulations on Parent Leave and Criminal History Inquiries

Carothers DiSante & Freudenberger LLP • March 14, 2018
California’s Fair Employment and Housing Council (“FEHC”) has proposed new regulations (revised regulations, really) addressing the state’s new ban-the-box and parental leave laws. The regulations are not yet final or in effect, but are being considered by the FEHC and likely will be adopted, potentially with some modifications based on input from public comments and public hearings in the near future, with the first hearing scheduled for April 4, 2018.

Washington State Legislature Sends Comprehensive Pay Equity Bill to Governor

Jackson Lewis P.C. • March 14, 2018
The Washington Legislature has sent Governor Jay Inslee a proposed Act that would significantly broaden the state’s Equal Pay and Opportunity Act. The Governor is expected to approve it.

Fifth Circuit Emphasizes Narrowed Liability for Employee Transfer Under the Louisiana Whistleblower Statute

Ogletree Deakins • March 14, 2018
The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana’s grant of summary judgment under the Louisiana whistleblower law, Louisiana Revised Statutes section 23:967, in favor of an employer that transferred an employee to a less desirable location after revealing concerns about her employer’s handling of a diabetic student. Rayborn v. Bossier Parish School Board, No. 16-30903 (February 2, 2018).

New Mexico Supreme Court Rejects a Heightened Evidentiary Burden on a Plaintiff in a Reverse Race Discrimination Case

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • March 13, 2018
In Garcia v. Hatch Valley Public Schools, the New Mexico Supreme Court recently examined whether a plaintiff has a relatively heightened evidentiary burden in proving a reverse discrimination claim brought under the New Mexico Human Rights Act. The court held that a plaintiff in a “so-called reverse discrimination case” has the same evidentiary burden as does a “minority” plaintiff asserting a claim of discrimination under the Act. The decision in Garcia impacts all companies with four or more employees in New Mexico.

California Supreme Court Determines How Flat Sum Bonuses Factor into Overtime Calculation

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • March 12, 2018
The California Supreme Court recently decided the question of how an employee’s overtime pay rate should be calculated when the employee has earned a flat sum bonus during a single pay period.1 In Alvarado v. Dart Container Corp. of California, there was no dispute that the bonus needed to be factored into the employee’s regular rate of pay. The question addressed by the court was whether the divisor for purposes of calculating the per-hour value of the bonus should be (1) the number of hours the employee actually worked during the pay period, including overtime hours; (2) the number of non-overtime hours the employee worked during the pay period; or (3) the number of non-overtime hours that exist in the pay period, regardless of the number of hours the employee actually worked.

Calculating Overtime Value of Flat-Sum Bonus Must Be Based on Actual Non-Overtime Hours Worked, California High Court Holds

Jackson Lewis P.C. • March 11, 2018
The California Supreme Court has held that, under state law, when an employee earns a flat sum bonus during a pay period, the overtime pay rate will be calculated using the actual number of non-overtime hours worked by the employee during the pay period. Alvarado v. Dart Container Corp., 2018 Cal. LEXIS 1123 (Cal. Mar. 5, 2018).

Certainty is on the Horizon for the New York Home Care Industry

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • March 09, 2018
The home care industry has faced collapse since a series of New York Appellate Division decisions invalidated New York Department of Labor (NY DOL) policy and held that home care attendants working 24-hour shifts who are employed by third-party agencies had to be paid for every hour of the shift and employers could not deduct sleep and meal periods.

Fisher Phillips | California | California Supreme Court Embraces Employee-Friendly Formula For Calculating OT Pay (March 05, 2018)

Fisher Phillips | California | FEHC Proposes Regulations to Implement California’s New “Ban the Box” and “New Parent Leave” Laws (March 04, 2018)

Fisher Phillips | California | Your Comprehensive Guide to 2018 Proposed California Legislation (February 28, 2018)

FordHarrison LLP | California | California Supreme Court's Recent Overtime Ruling Likely to Cause Payroll Problems (March 07, 2018)

Jackson Lewis P.C. | California | California Court of Appeals Holds Labor Code § 558 Claims Are Indivisible Claims and Not Arbitrable (February 28, 2018)

Jackson Lewis P.C. | California | Calculating Overtime Value of Flat-Sum Bonus Must Be Based on Actual Non-Overtime Hours Worked, California High Court Holds (March 11, 2018)

Jackson Lewis P.C. | California | Pending California Legislation Alert! Recently Introduced Bill Seeks to Protect Medicinal Marijuana Users from Employment Discrimination in California (February 27, 2018)

Fisher Phillips | California | The Plot Thickens: Trump Administration Sues California Over New Immigration Laws, Including AB 450 (March 09, 2018)

Jackson Lewis P.C. | California | California Transportation Industry Waives Goodbye to Enforcement of Federal Arbitration Act Provisions in Employment Contracts (March 07, 2018)

Ogletree Deakins | California | High Times in San Francisco: DA Promises To Expunge Cannabis Convictions Without Petitions (February 25, 2018)