With news of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agencies raiding nearly 100 7-Eleven stores across 17 states in the US demanding employment verification from managers, TerraLex recently asked me to discuss what considerations employers and employees should keep top of mind if an onsite raid occurs. Here is my response for a TerraLex publication:
This week, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that unused accrued sick time does not constitute “wages” that must be paid upon termination under the Massachusetts Wage Act. This decision, Mui v. Massachusetts Port Authority, resolves a previously unsettled question in Massachusetts wage and hour law.
Long gone are the days when employers could prohibit employees from talking about their pay with each other, including bonuses, pay raise rates and/or paid benefits and/or to fire them for doing so. It is illegal for an employer to take any such action under NH law. The rationale behind RSA 275:41-b is to attempt to level the playing field when it comes to pay inequality in the workplace.
This is part 2 of a 2 part series. To read part 1, click here.
Now that you have read the top 5 NH Labor Law Violations, keep reading – you don’t want to get caught out on the last 5!: https://www.nh.gov/labor/inspection/violation-free.htm
Last week, the Department of Labor issued new guidance on whether interns are “employees” covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act’s minimum wage and overtime provisions. In the updated guidance, the DOL has adopted the “primary beneficiary test,” first applied by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in 2015, and used by a growing number of courts in recent years.
This is part 1 of a 2 part series. To read part 2, click here.
At the end of 2017, the New Hampshire Department of Labor (DOL) published its annual list of “Top 10 New Hampshire Labor Law Violations.” While the list does not change that much from year to year, it is a good opportunity to review pay and record keeping practices to ensure compliance with NH law.
This week, The Boston Globe reported on a growing trend in the nation’s workplaces: more and more fathers are complaining that they are experiencing discrimination in the workplace because of their family obligations.
On December 14, 2017, the National Labor Relations Board discarded its longstanding rule that facially neutral employer rules are unlawful if an employee would “reasonably construe” the rule as prohibiting an employee from engaging in protected, concerted activity under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). Moving forward, the Board held, it will balance the employer’s justification for the rule against the impact on NLRA rights, and take into account the facts and circumstances including the relative importance of the employer’s justification, the particular work setting or event, and the importance of the NLRA right at issue. This decision overrules 13 years of precedent, and offers some measure of respite to employers stumped by the Board’s past approach to evaluating handbooks, social media standards, technology policies, conduct rules, and other common workplace policies.
As most human resources professionals know, documentation can often make or break an employment lawsuit. A thorough paper record of an employee’s performance problems, complaints, job requirements, attendance, and/or breaks and working time can aid employers when faced with an agency filing or lawsuit. While this paper record may not stop a legal complaint, it can provide critical leverage in settlement negotiations or result in early dismissal of a discrimination or wage and hour lawsuit. A lack of documentation, on the other hand, can result in overtime or vacation wages owed, allow discrimination or retaliation claims to proceed that otherwise could have been resolved swiftly, or constitute violations of recordkeeping laws.
Boyne Resorts, the company which operates Loon Mountain ski area in New Hampshire, Sunday River and Sugarloaf in Maine and several other ski areas in the US and Canada has announced that all employees will be required to wear safety helmets while working on the snow. This applies not only to ski and snowboard instructors who routinely wear helmets, but all other workers who get around the mountain on skis or snowboards. Bicycle helmets will also be required for employees while on duty. This follows the death last season of a Sugarloaf employee. The incident was investigated by OSHA which issued a citation for a serious violation of workplace safety rules and levied a fine of $11,408.