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The Regular Rate Riddle in the Massachusetts "Grand Bargain" Legislation

The new “grand bargain” legislation Governor Charlie Baker signed into law last week gradually phases out the requirement that Massachusetts retailers pay time-and-a-half for work on Sundays or certain holidays. However, this phase-out has a hidden complication: payment of less than time-and-a-half for work on Sunday or holidays is not credited towards overtime for work over 40 hours in a week, and therefore must be included in the regular rate. This means retailers may be required to account for extra premium pay for employees who work on Sundays or holidays.

Massachusetts Raises Minimum Wage, Mandates Paid Family and Medical Leave

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has signed a sweeping bill that, over a period of five years, will: (1) raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour; (2) mandate paid family and medical leave for Massachusetts employees; and (3) phase out Sunday and holiday premium pay for retail employees. The law, signed on June 28, 2018, also will institute an annual sales tax holiday weekend. The first minimum wage increase, to $12.00 an hour, and first decrease in Sunday and holiday premium pay will go into effect on January 1, 2019.

Considerations for Employers in Massachusetts

Like New Jersey’s Diane B. Allen Equal Pay Act, the Massachusetts Equal Pay Act (MEPA) amendments went into effect on July 1, 2018. Regarded as one of the first comprehensive fair pay laws to be passed at the state level, MEPA has served as not only as a catalyst, but a model, for the patchwork of fair pay laws being enacted across the nation.

Massachusetts’s “Grand Bargain” Increases Minimum Wage, Ends Sunday Retail Premium Pay, and Provides Extensive Paid Leave

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker just signed into law the so-called “grand bargain” bill, which contains provisions that will have a significant effect on employers in the state. The law is a compromise designed to avoid potential ballot questions about an increase in the state minimum wage, paid leave, and a reduction in the state sales tax. It contains key employment-related provisions, including:

Massachusetts Increases Minimum Wage, Eliminates Premium Pay For Sunday Work, And Enacts New Paid Leave Program

On June 28, 2018, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker executed legislation that makes sweeping changes to Massachusetts law. As part of this so-called “Grand Bargain” legislation (the “Act”), Massachusetts will incrementally raise the minimum wage from $11 to $15 an hour and eliminate the need for most retail employees to receive premium pay for work performed on Sundays and holidays. The new law also creates one of the most generous paid family and medical leave programs in the country. Massachusetts now joins California, New York and Washington, D.C. as the only states to have both a $15 minimum wage and mandatory paid family and medical leave.

Big Changes Coming for Baystate Employers: Paid Family & Medical Leave And Minimum Wage Increases

In one fell swoop, Massachusetts has set in motion a plan to increase its minimum wage to $15.00 per hour and create a comprehensive paid family and medical leave program as the result of a “grand bargain” between employee advocates and representatives of the state’s business community. Governor Charlie Baker signed the bill in a ceremony today at the State House, which will also eliminate premium pay for Sundays and holidays, and make the annual sales tax holiday permanent. What do Massachusetts employers need to know about this new law?

Massachusetts Legislature Passes Bill Providing Paid Family Leave, $15 Minimum Wage

Massachusetts legislators have passed a bill that, if signed, would:

It’s Groundhog Day: Massachusetts Legislature Again Proposes Comprehensive Noncompete Law

The Massachusetts legislature is once again seeking to enact comprehensive noncompetition legislation to rein in the use, and some may argue the abuse, of restrictive covenants in employment agreements. Currently, noncompete agreements are examined by courts on a case-by-case basis under well-developed Massachusetts case law. This approach, however, has sometimes led to inconsistencies in the courts and unpredictable results.

Massachusetts and the Ninth Circuit: Recent Ban On Using Prior Salary as Basis for Gender Pay Gap

Executive Summary: The federal Equal Pay Act already imposes limitations on employers when it comes to compensating employees of the opposite sex for equal work. With a recent legislative change in Massachusetts and a decision earlier this month out of the Ninth Circuit, however, several jurisdictions now prohibit the use of prior salary as a justification for any pay differential between men and women.

Massachusetts Equal Pay Act Calculation Tool: What Employers Need to Know

Ever since Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed the state Equal Pay Act (MEPA) on August 1, 2016, employers have been seeking direction on how employee pay should be analyzed to withstand scrutiny under the new law. MEPA goes into effect on July 1, 2018.