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Review Commission Gains Quorum After Senate Confirmations

Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 20, 2020
Since April of 2019, the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission (“Commission”) has been a panel of one. After Chairwoman Heather MacDougall resigned from the Commission on March 31, 2019 and Commission Cynthia Attwood’s term ended in April of 2019, the Commission was left with one member, Commissioner James Sullivan, Jr. In July 2019, Mr. Sullivan was elevated to Chairman of the Commission and has sat in that position without a quorum since then. But that will soon change as the Senate has confirmed two appointees, both familiar faces to the Commission.

Demand for H-2B Visas Remains Higher than Supply

Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 20, 2020
The peak H-2B filing season opened on January 2, 2020, and by the next day the Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) in the Department of Labor (DOL) had received approximately 5,000 applications for 87,000 seasonal workers. Only 33,000 are available for the spring/summer period, which starts on April 1, 2020. Another 33,000 are available for the winter season.

Northrup Grumman Agrees to Settle 401(k) Excessive Fee Suit

Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 20, 2020
Northrop Grumman has agreed to pay $12,375,000 to settle a class action brought under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) by participants in its 401(k) plan. The parties reached the initial terms of this settlement last year minutes before the start of the trial.

Sixth Circuit Considers Whether Comparator Info is Discoverable in a Failure to Promote Case

Ogletree Deakins • January 20, 2020
In Jones v. Johnson, No. 18-2252 (January 9, 2020), the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals considered the discoverability of comparator information in a case involving an allegation that an employer failed to promote an employee. The court reversed a district court’s decision in favor of an employer on the grounds that it had improperly limited the scope of discovery. The Sixth Circuit’s decision highlights that documentary evidence reviewed by decision-makers and/or about which they had knowledge will likely be found to be discoverable, and depositions of decision-makers and those who provided information to the decisions-makers during the hiring process will likely be found to be permissible.

Numbers are fun ... unless you’re calculating overtime compensation for a period that includes a discretionary bonus.

Ogletree Deakins • January 20, 2020
Section 7 of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires an employer to pay one and one-half times an employee’s “regular rate” of pay for hours worked over 40 in a workweek. That “regular rate” includes all “remuneration for employment” and specifically includes nondiscretionary bonuses.

Compliance with Changing State and Local Laws is Nonstop

Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 20, 2020
In 2019, as in previous years, most of the new labor and employment law legislation was enacted at the state and local level.

Combating Improper Robocalls: The TRACED Act Signed into Law

Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 20, 2020
In the final days of 2019, the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act (“TRACED Act”) was signed into law to combat the increasing number of illegal robocall practices and other intentional violations of telemarketing laws.

Pennsylvania Court Holds Employees May Sue Under Medical Marijuana Act

Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 20, 2020
A Pennsylvania state court held that the state’s Medical Marijuana Act creates a private right of action for medical marijuana users to sue their employers. Pamela Palmiter v. Commonwealth Health Systems, Inc., Civ. Action No. 19 CV 1315 (Pa. Ct. C.P. Lackawanna County, Nov. 22, 2019).

New York Enacts Legislation Related to Board Diversity

Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 20, 2020
New York recently enacted the “Women on Corporate Boards Study” law (S. 4278), joining a growing number of states requiring organizations to report their board composition. The new law applies to domestic and foreign corporations “authorized to do business” in the state. Given the expanse of companies doing business in New York, this law may have a broad reach and impact organizations based far from New York.

U.S. District Court Grants Preliminary Injunction Against Enforcement of AB 5: Truckers Can Keep Trucking as Independent Contractors in California

Jackson Lewis P.C. • January 20, 2020
Earlier this week, the Southern District heard arguments regarding the grant of a preliminary injunction to prevent the enforcement of Assembly Bill 5 (“AB 5”) against motor carriers operating within California.

Puerto Rico Working Women’s Bill of Rights Includes New Posting Requirement

Littler Mendelson, P.C. • January 20, 2020
On January 3, 2020, Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vázquez signed Law No. 9-2020 (“Act 9” or “the Act”), known as the Working Women’s Bill of Rights. While the Act expressly states that it was enacted for informational purposes and does not create any new substantive rights, the Act centralizes a non-exhaustive list of previously established rights for working women in the public and private sectors.
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