Showing 17 posts in Employment Litigation & Counseling.

New Illinois Workers’ Compensation Legislation: Unconstitutional If Applied Retroactively

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With the passage of Senate Bill 1596 and the expected signing of the law by Governor J.B. Pritzker, Illinois lawmakers have again attempted to address perceived injustices associated with long-standing statutes of repose that bar claims of some plaintiffs who have been diagnosed with asbestos-related diseases many years after they were exposed to asbestos during their employment. Specifically, the law indicates that plaintiffs whose workers’ compensation claims against their employers are barred by the statute of repose for workers’ compensation claims may bring civil suits against their employers. This creates an exception to the exclusive remedy provision of the workers’ compensation system, which typically prevents employees from suing their employers for work-related diseases and injuries. More »

TRANSPORTATION LAW CLIENT ALERT: The Supreme Court’s Decision in New Prime v. Oliveira

Transportation companies frequently rely on independent contractor agreements with owner-operators to conduct many essential logistics operations. “Owner-operators” are self-employed and independently contract with large companies to haul goods across the country. This relationship can produce disputes between the owner-operator and transportation company. For example, when a load is not delivered on time or goods are damaged in the delivery process, transportation companies may seek to hold the owner-operator liable. In anticipation of these disputes, owner-operators almost routinely sign arbitration agreements as a part of their independent contractor agreements with transportation companies. However, when the issues between transportation companies and owner-operators pertain to wage and hour claims or other employment concerns, the recent Supreme Court decision in New Prime v Oliveira may have them changing course. More »

EMPLOYMENT LAW CLIENT ALERT: Tenth Circuit Rules Failure to File Discrimination Claim with EEOC No Longer Jurisdictional Bar

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In a surprising decision overturning 40 years of precedent, the Tenth Circuit recently ruled that a plaintiff’s failure to file a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) was not a jurisdictional bar to a federal court adjudicating an employment discrimination claim. Lincoln v BNSF Railway Company, --- F3d --- (10th Cir. August 17, 2018). More »

EMPLOYMENT LAW: Can Employers Really Take a Deep Breath in the Wake of Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis?

Overview

Earlier this year, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld the enforceability of individualized arbitration agreements as a matter of law in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis. The decision left employers everywhere taking a collective and long-sought sigh of relief. But how protected are employers, really? More »

PA EMPLOYMENT LAW CLIENT ALERT: Is More Money Coming To PA Employees? A Proposal By Governor Wolf Seeks To Expand Overtime Compensation For PA Employees

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Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf recently announced a proposal to expand overtime pay to an estimated 460,000 Pennsylvania employees. To that end, Governor Wolf requested the Department of Labor & Industry to prepare a plan to modernize Pennsylvania’s overtime rules, which have not been updated in more than 40 years. The first step in updating the rules is to increase the salary threshold to determine overtime eligibility for employees. Presently, the threshold for eligibility is set at the federal level of $455.00 per week, or $23,660.00 annually.  That level would increase to $610.00 per week ($31,720.00 annually) on January 1, 2020. The level would increase again to $39,832.00 on January 1, 2021 and to $47,892.00 in 2022.  Thereafter, the salary threshold will automatically increase every three years.  More »

NJ EMPLOYMENT LAW CLIENT ALERT: Timing is Everything-Recent Amendments Strengthen New Jersey Opportunity to Compete Act

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In a move that will provide additional protections to job seekers in New Jersey, outgoing New Jersey Governor Chris Christie recently approved amendments to New Jersey’s Opportunity to Compete Act “OTCA." More »

NJ EMPLOYMENT LAW CLIENT ALERT: An Amendment to the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination “NJLAD” Provides Protection And Accommodations for Nursing Mothers

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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie recently signed legislation that amends the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination "NJLAD" to prohibit employers from discriminating against employees for breastfeeding. In that regard, an employer may not refuse to hire, discharge or require an employee to retire as a result of the employee’s breastfeeding. Further, the amendment prohibits employers from discriminating against any breastfeeding employee in regards to the employee’s compensation, terms, conditions or privileges of employment. More »

CLIENT ALERT: Labor & Employment Law - Where Do We Stand? U.S. Department of Labor's Revised Overtime Rules Under the Fair Labor Standards Act

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A. Overview of Fair Labor Standards Act
The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA) is a federal law that regulates minimum wage and overtime compensation. Specifically, the FLSA provides a $7.25 per hour minimum wage for all covered employees, and mandates that they be paid time-and-a-half for work in excess of 40 hours per week. More »

EMPLOYER ALERT: Landscaping Employers Are Targets of Employee Wage Litigation

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It is no secret that the number of federal and state wage lawsuits filed against employers is on the rise. In 2015, 8,781 federal wage lawsuits were filed against employers. Plaintiffs’ firms have realized the large potential for damages and fees in these cases and are aggressively capitalizing by consistently filing suits. What is surprising is the increase in filings specifically against landscaping companies. For example, since January 1, 2016, a new lawsuit has been filed here in the local Illinois federal court each week against a different landscaping company. In fact, there are Plaintiffs’ law firms in Illinois focused solely on filing employment lawsuits on behalf of landscaping employees. More »

ALERT for Illinois Employers: Equal Pay Act

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Effective January 2, 2016, employers with fewer than four employees must comply with the Equal Pay Act. The Act prohibits employers from paying unequal wages to men and women for doing the same or substantially similar work, except if the wage difference is based upon a seniority system, a merit system, a system measuring earnings by quantity or quality of production, or factors other than gender.  (820 ILCS 112/5)

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