When natural disaster strikes New Jersey, the Federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance program provides unemployment benefits to individuals who live or work in affected areas of New Jersey and become unemployed as a result of the damage. The process begins with the Governor making a request to the Department for Labor to make the benefits available to individuals in qualifying counties of the state. Upon approval by the DOL, individuals who do not qualify for regular unemployment insurance may obtain those benefits through the program. After the initial approval by the DOL, the U. S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) may approve additional counties for the special benefits program. Prior to Hurricane Sandy, the benefits were last made available after Hurricane Irene in 2011.
Articles About New Jersey Labor And Employment Law.
The Municipal Council of the City of Newark, New Jersey has passed a new ordinance designed to help individuals with criminal convictions find employment within the City of Newark. This ordinance, effective November 18, 2012, is different from many other cities’ ban-the-box ordinances in that it covers all private sector employers with five or more employees and doing business, employing persons, or taking employment applications within the City of Newark. The ordinance also applies to the rental, lease or sublease of real property and licensing by the City.
Effective November 18, 2012, most employers that operate in Newark, New Jersey must comply with a new ordinance1 broadly restricting their discretion to rely on criminal background records for employment purposes.
Executive Summary: On September 27, 2012, two members of the New Jersey Assembly introduced Assembly Bill 3310, which authorizes the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJDOL) to investigate, mediate and prosecute claims by certain independent contractors that they were not properly paid in their transactions with businesses and non-profits. The bill imposes additional record-keeping requirements on businesses and non-profits that contract with certain independent contractors and establishes civil and criminal penalties for violations of the law. If passed, this law would create a minefield for all businesses and non-profits in New Jersey who use independent contractors and could severely hurt New Jersey sole proprietors.
New Jersey may soon join the ranks of other states that prohibit or seriously limit an employer’s right to request a current employee or applicant’s password, username, or similar information to social media websites such as Facebook. Unfortunately, the proposed New Jersey legislation as currently written will provide applicants and current employees with a potential new cause of action to assert against companies.
The New Jersey State Assembly has passed and Governor Chris Christie has signed into law a bill that will increase the requirements for employers to provide notice to employees of laws protecting them from wage and other discrimination because of gender. The new law (A2647) supplements the New Jersey Equal Pay Act and requires employers with 50 or more employees to “conspicuously post” a notification stating workers’ rights to be free from gender inequity or bias in pay, compensation, benefits or other terms or conditions, under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Pay Act of 1963. Signed on September 21, 2012, the new law is scheduled to take effect 61 days from the date of its signing. However, the Commissioner of the Department of Labor still needs to develop and issue the form of notification required.
Executive Summary: On Friday, September 21, 2012, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed into law a “Gender Pay Parity” bill that imposes a new notice posting requirement on covered employers. The governor rejected a second bill that would have increased reporting requirements for public contractors and sent the remaining two bills back to the legislature with significant amendments.
Several bills are pending before the New Jersey legislature that, if enacted, could significantly impact New Jersey employers. This Alert highlights some of the more significant bills.
A New Jersey district court recently held that an employee handbook provision could not be enforced as a valid confidentiality agreement between a company and a former employee. Metropolitan Foods, Inc. d/b/a Driscoll Foods v. Kelsch [pdf] involved a former employee of Driscoll Foods (Kelsch), who was accused of soliciting orders for his new employer while still working for Driscoll. Driscoll sued Kelsch under a number of causes of action, including breach of contract.
In a recent trade secrets case, Stryker v. Hi-Temp Specialty Metals, Inc. [pdf], a federal court in New Jersey made clear that the involuntary termination of an employee does not preclude enforcement of reasonable post-employment restrictions.
As we reported earlier, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (DLWD)amended its wage and hour regulations in September 2011 to eliminate inconsistencies between state and federal overtime law. In so doing, the DLWD inadvertently omitted the exemption for commissioned sales employees, commonly referred to as the â€œinside salesâ€ exemption, from the amendment. The DLWDâ€™s mistake, which it acknowledged was inadvertent, potentially put employers at risk for misclassification lawsuits.
A recent decision from the Eastern District of Pennsylvania demonstrates that, despite allegations of employee wrongdoing and trade secret misappropriation, the facts may not support claims under some statutory computer offense laws. Even the New Jersey Computer Related Offenses Act (NJCROA), which is broader than the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), requires specific elements to support a claim. Thus, what many consider a run-of-the-mill misappropriation case will not necessarily lead to a NJCROA claim.
On January 9, 2012, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed into law the New Jersey Trade Secrets Act, which establishes principles governing protection of trade secrets and remedies for their misappropriation. In doing so, New Jersey has joined the mainstream in the trade secrets arena: New York, North Carolina, Massachusetts, and Texas are the only remaining states without a statute modeled on the Uniform Trade Secrets Act. While the New Jersey Trade Secrets Act introduces a statutory framework governing trade secret protection, in many respects it does no more than codify existing case law. The Act became effective on January 9, 2012.
Joining the vast majority of jurisdictions in the country, New Jersey has enacted a law to protect trade secrets. The New Jersey Trade Secrets Act (â€œNJTSAâ€), signed by Governor Chris Christie on January 9, 2012, is a version of the Uniform Trade Secrets Act (â€œUTSAâ€). A total of 47 states have now adopted some variation of the UTSA. The new law is effective immediately. The full text of the NJTSA can be found at: http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2010/Bills/S2500/2456_R1.HTM.
On November 16, 2011, the New Jersey Appellate Division affirmed a finding that registered nurses who were paid on an hourly basis were exempt from the overtime requirements of the New Jersey Wage and Hour Law (â€œNJWHLâ€), even though the regulation applicable at the time only extended the â€œprofessionalâ€ exemption to employees compensated on a â€œsalary or fee basis.â€