Our sister blog, Immigration Law, has written an article entitled, Immigration Relief for Foreign Entrepreneurs, which provides an overview of the proposed USCIS Entrepreneur Rule  to be published in the Federal Register shortly. This post examines the potential implications of the rule for non-U.S. entrepreneurs who own at least 15% of a startup that has received significant funding from U.S. investors. The rule would offer the beneficiaries “Parole” status and immediate eligibility to work in the U.S.

We reported in a recent post on proposed regulations dealing with, among other things, the treatment of hospital indemnity or other fixed indemnity insurance products in the group market. This post takes a closer look at the future of these products under the proposed rules and in light of a recent case, Central United Life v. Burwell, which struck down a final Department of Health and Human Services regulation requiring policyholders to certify that they had Affordable Care Act (ACA)-complaint minimum essential coverage in addition to fixed indemnity coverage for the latter to qualify as an excepted benefit. While the regulation in issue in Central United Life governed the individual market, the case’s reasoning could inform the final regulations governing hospital and fixed Indemnity policies in the group market.

We conclude that, in the absence of some significant changes to the proposed regulations, the market for hospital and fixed Indemnity policies is headed for some upheaval.

Continue Reading Hospital and Fixed Indemnity Policies; Excepted Benefits; Supplemental Coverage under Recently Proposed Treasury Regulations; and Central United Life v. Burwell

If your company operates in a territory covered by the 4th circuit (Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina) and requires employees to sign a noncompete agreement with language similar to the following, it may be time to consider revising the agreement:

Continue Reading Fourth Circuit Decision Reminds Employers That Overbroad Noncompete Agreements May Not Be Enforceable

Blended families may be more common than organic ones these days and perhaps the same can be said about employees in corporate America.

The trend may emanate in part from the “acqui-hire” approach to building a business.  An “acqui-hire” happens when one business acquires another for its workforce, not for its products or services.  This is a particularly popular approach in the technology sector where buying a team of tech-savvy individuals who have a track record of creating value is a better business bet than money spent on beta testing a product or service that may or may not succeed in the marketplace.  In other words, don’t buy the product — buy the brains that make the product.

Continue Reading Corporate Divorce Series: Acqui-Hires: A Corporate Blended Family?

In a carefully reasoned but ultimately restrained opinion the Seventh Circuit held that Title VII does not prohibit discrimination in employment on the basis of sexual orientation. While declining to become the first circuit court to extend Title VII to sexual orientation claims, the court acknowledged at length the persuasive force of a recent EEOC administrative decision and similar district court rulings noting the logical fallacy of enforcing Title VII’s protections against discrimination on the basis of gender nonconformity while permitting sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace to continue.

Continue Reading Seventh Circuit Holds Title VII Does Not Prohibit Sexual Orientation Discrimination, But Acknowledges Inherent Flaws in Precedent Underlying its Holding

We have co-authored an alert with our affiliate government relations consulting group, ML Strategies entitled, “Massachusetts State Legislature Takes Action on Major Employment Reform as Legislative Session Ends”, which addresses key legislation concerning pay equity, transgender anti-discrimination, non-compete agreement reform, credit checks reform and wage theft. The alert provides a review of the new laws and their implications for employers.

Our sister blog, Privacy and Security Matters, has released an alert entitled, EU-US Privacy Shield to Launch August 1, Replacing Safe Harbor, which provides an overview of the new Privacy Shield requirements. Privacy Shield replaces Safe Harbor and provides a legal mechanism for transferring personal information from the EU to the US. In addition to summarizing key points of the Privacy Shield documents, the alert is also a guide for companies interested in certifying compliance with Privacy Shield.

Did you know that the world is now inhabited by creatures called Pokémon?  (Or maybe they’ve always been there?)  Some run across the plains; others fly through the skies; and some live in the mountains….and some, yes, some, are located right in your workplace.  Pokeman WorkplaceThrough the magic of downloading Pokémon Go to your smartphone, you too can see these creatures and catch them for some apparently critical scientific testing.

Employers not familiar with Pikachu, Charizard, and Lucario can rest assured – your employees are.  In less than one week, Pokémon Go became the most downloaded smartphone videogame ever, and employers are clamoring for advice on how to deal with a workforce that already seems sufficiently and consistently distracted.

Continue Reading Pokémon Go in the Workplace: Oh Look There’s a Pikachu!

The obligation to accommodate a disabled employee is an ongoing one; a doctor’s note may not be a prerequisite to engage in the interactive process – those are two important lessons that employers should take away from a recent decision by a California Federal district court.

Continue Reading California Federal Court Reminds Employers That They Must Carefully Navigate Disability Accommodation Process