In 2009, New Jersey passed a law requiring the Department of Labor and Workforce Development (â€œDLWDâ€) to issue regulations providing that any employer who is required to maintain and report records regarding wages, benefits, and taxes pursuant to state law â€œshall conspicuously post notificationâ€ of the obligation to maintain and report those records.
Articles Discussing Labor And Employment Law In All Fifty Us States And Puerto Rico.
As of July 1, 2012, certain employers in Philadelphia will have to provide their employees with paid sick leave. A recently enacted ordinance amends Chapter 17-300 of the Philadelphia Code, titled “Philadelphia 21st Century Minimum Wage and Benefits Standard.”
The long awaited oral argument in the seminal meal and rest break decision involving Brinker Restaurant finally occurred today. Before a packed courtroom, lawyers for a hopeful class of waiters and waitresses and the representatives of California employers battled it out before the seven justices of the California Supreme Court.
The federal appeals court in Boston has underscored the importance of carefully examining and understanding restrictive covenants, such as non-competes and non-solicitation agreements, that may be acquired in a business purchase. The Court found a one-year non-compete clause in a restrictive covenant agreement expired and unenforceable against former employees when it was sought to be invoked more than one year following the sale of the company that had entered into the agreements with them. OfficeMax, Inc. v. Levesque, 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 18816 (1st Cir. Sept. 12, 2011). Accordingly, the Court refused to enforce the District Courtâ€™s preliminary injunction restricting the former employees from competing with OfficeMax, an office supplies company that bought the assets of Boise Cascade Office Products Corp. (BCOP), another office supply company.
New Jersey recognizes the right of a worker to prepare to compete with his or her employer even while in the employerâ€™s employ, provided the preparation does not involve taking the employerâ€™s confidential and proprietary information and property. However, New Jersey also recognizes that the worker owes a duty of undivided loyalty to act solely for â€” and in the best interests of â€” his or her employer. The workerâ€™s right, therefore, does not curtail his duty to his employer, a New Jersey Appellate Division court has confirmed. Baseline Services, Inc. v. Kutz, 2011 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 2309 (NJ App. Div. Aug. 25, 2011) (per curiam). Finding against the disloyal employee, the Court ordered him to pay his former employer the lost net profit on the contract it did not obtain because of his conduct.
Under the California Labor Code, certain computer software employees, as well as licensed physicians and surgeons, are exempt from state overtime requirements if they receive a minimum hourly, monthly or yearly rate. The rate is determined annually based upon changes to the California Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers. Because the Index experienced a 2.5% increase over the past year, the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) adjusted the rates these individuals must be paid to be considered overtime-exempt.
Certain Philadelphia employers will be required to provide full-time employees with paid sick leave beginning July 1, 2012. The City Council voted 15-2 in support of the measure and Mayor Michael Nutter did not veto it. The new Ordinance, an amendment to Chapter 17-1300 of the Philadelphia Code, is entitled, â€œPhiladelphia 21st Century Minimum Wage and Benefits Standardâ€. Mayor Nutter previously vetoed a broader paid sick leave bill, which would have applied to all Philadelphia employers with more than five employees.
Oklahoma has substantially revised its Standards For Workplace Drug and Alcohol Testing Act, Okla. Stat. Ann. Â§Â§ 551 â€“ 563, effective November 1, 2011. The law has been simplified and eliminates a number of requirements previously imposed on employers.
Under facts never before addressed by a California court, a California Court of Appeal recently ruled that when an on-duty employee injures an individual while engaging in arguably personal pursuits, the employer is still liable for the injuries. Vogt v. Herron Construction, No. E052434 (Fourth Dist., Div. Two Nov. 1, 2011).
A new civil action for the misappropriation of trade secrets, with remedies for the aggrieved holder of a trade secret, would be created under legislation passed by the New Jersey General Assembly and the New Jersey Senate. The New Jersey Trade Secrets Act (A-921) must be signed by Governor Chris Christie before becoming law. Once signed, the Act will take effect immediately. It will not apply retroactively.
A bill has been introduced in the Wisconsin Assembly that would add â€œcredit historyâ€ to the list of classes protected from discrimination under the Wisconsin Fair Employment Act. Assembly Bill 350 was introduced on October 31, 2011. This development follows the introduction of a bill addressing arrest and conviction record discrimination in Wisconsin. (See our article, Wisconsin Employment Law Watch: Legislature to Consider Conviction Record Discrimination Bill.)
On January 1, 2012, retailers must be in compliance with the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act of 2010. Compliance with the Act is relatively simple: retailers are not required to take any affirmative action to ensure that products in their distribution channel do not emanate from companies that rely on slave labor, but must post on their website what, if anything, they are doing to eliminate slave labor from their supply chains.
In the last hours of his opportunity to veto new legislation, California Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 459. Similar to a bill previously vetoed by former Governor Schwarzenegger and dubbed the “Job Killer Act” by business, SB 459, effective January 1, 2012, might be called by some critics the “Small Business Killer Act.” Championed by organized labor and supported by Democratic legislators, the practical consequences could prove to discourage businesses from utilizing independent contractors based in California, while also discouraging service-providing sole proprietorships and other independent contractors from providing services to other businesses in California.
The California Court of Appeal has held that judgment for an employer is proper under California law where the plaintiff failed to present sufficient evidence that she was subjected to severe or pervasive workplace harassment based on her gender. Brennan v. Townsend & O’Leary Enterprises, Inc., No. G042398 (Cal. Ct. App. Oct. 18, 2010). Accordingly, the Court affirmed judgment notwithstanding the verdict in favor of the employer.
California Labor Code section 2802 generally requires employers to indemnify their employees for losses the employee incurs within the scope of employment. As one common example, section 2802 requires an employer to indemnify an employee for attorneys’ fees if the employee is sued by a third party, such as a customer, concerning conduct that falls within the scope of employment. But what about legal fees incurred by an employee in defending against a lawsuit by the employer itself, such as for unfair competition or misappropriation of trade secrets?