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Michigan Employers May Soon Obtain Relief From Oppressive And Risky Wage Garnishments

An order for a wage garnishment is surprisingly complex to administer and very risky for employers. For instance, if an employer does not answer a garnishment within 14 days or do any other act required by the court, it is subject to a judgment against it for the full amount of the employee’s debt. The employee’s debt may be small, in the range of several hundred or several thousand dollars. But they are not all small—in one case a court entered a default judgment against an employer for being late on a disclosure in the amount of $596,000.

Michigan Bars Employers from Demanding Private Social Media Information from Applicants, Employees

A new Michigan law signed by Governor Rick Snyder prohibits employers and prospective employers from requiring employees and applicants to grant access to, allow observation of, or disclose information used to access private Internet and e-mail accounts, including social media networks such as Facebook. This ban also applies to educational institutions and their students. Michigan’s Internet Privacy Protection Act, Public Act 478 of 2012, is effective as of December 28, 2012. The new law also prohibits employers from discharging, disciplining, failing to hire, or otherwise penalizing those who refuse to disclose information that allows access to such accounts.

Michigan's New "Internet Privacy Protection Act" Sets Limitations for Employers and Employees

On December 28, 2012, Michigan joined California,1 Illinois,2 and Maryland3 in enacting a social media password protection law when Governor Rick Snyder signed the "Internet Privacy Protection Act" (IPPA or the "Act"). In an accompanying statement, the governor declared that "cyber security is important to the reinvention of Michigan, and protecting the private internet accounts of residents is a part of that," and that "potential employees and students should be judged on their skills and abilities, not private online activity." To accomplish these objectives, the IPPA, like the other states' social media legislation, generally prohibits employers from gaining access to applicants' or employees' personal social media accounts. The Act, however, also permits employers to access employees' use of employer equipment and systems and allows for investigations, under certain circumstances, of employees' personal social media accounts. While relatively straightforward, the Act will require businesses operating in Michigan to grapple with a range of interpretive challenges.

New Michigan Law Prohibits Employers from Asking Applicants and Employees for Access to Personal Internet Accounts

The apparent practice by employers of requesting access to employees’ and applicants’ social media accounts, such as Facebook and Twitter, has led the state of Michigan to pass the Internet Privacy Protection Act (PA 478 of 2012)(IPPA). The Act was signed by Governor Rick Snyder on December 27, 2012, as part of a flurry of late session legislative activity and given immediate effect.

Michigan Enacts Right-to-Work Laws

Employees in Michigan can now opt out of joining and paying dues to unions without sacrificing their jobs.

Michigan's New "Social Media Password Protection" Law Multiplies the Challenges for Employers Seeking to Investigate Employees' Social Media Misconduct

Joining California, Illinois, and Maryland, Michigan has enacted its own social media password protection law, which went into effect with the governor’s signing of the bill on December 28, 2012.

Michigan Enacts Social-Media Privacy Law

Michigan is the latest State to pass a "Facebook-privacy" law. The law, called the Internet Privacy Protection Act, was signed by Gov. Rick Snyder last Friday. The law prohibits employers and educational institutions from asking applicants, employees, and students for information about the individual's social-media accounts, reports The Detroit News.

Michigan Enacts Right to Work Laws

Michigan became the 24th “Right to Work” state when Governor Rick Snyder signed into law on December 11, 2012, Public Act No. 348. This right to work law, which is titled the Workplace Equity and Fairness Act, is an amendment to Michigan 1939 PA 176, and applies to private sector employees, employers, and labor organizations. Governor Snyder also signed into law a right to work law for the public sector. That law is known as Public Act No. 349 and amends Michigan 1947 PA 336. Both statutes are to take effect on the 91st day after final adjournment of the 96th Legislature’s 2012 Regular Session, or approximately March 28, 2013. However, the effect of the laws will not be immediate for everyone, as current collective bargaining agreements are “grandfathered” and the new right to work provisions will take effect upon the expiration of those agreements.

Michigan Becomes 24th Right-to-Work State—Now What?

As expected and amid demonstrations by thousands of union supporters, the Michigan House of Representatives passed SB 116 and HB 4003, and both bills were signed by Governor Rick Snyder. Now officially known as PA 348 of 2012 and PA 349 of 2012, respectively, these Acts provide both private and public sector employees with the right to either join a union and pay dues or refrain from doing so.

Michigan Becomes Twenty-Fourth Right-To-Work State

Approximately 17.5 percent of Michigan workers are dues-paying union members, making it the fifth most unionized state in the nation. Michigan is one of the least likely candidates to adopt right-to-work legislation. However, on Tuesday, December 11, 2012, the Republican Governor of Michigan, Rick Snyder, signed Public Acts 348 and 349 of 2012 into law, making Michigan the twenty-forth right-to-work state. This is a stunning development in the home state of the United Auto Workers (UAW), considered to be a strong, pro-labor state.