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David Barmak's trial experience includes numerous jury and nonjury trials in both federal and state courts, as well as arbitrations. On employment law issues, he has represented clients in complex litigation involving employment discrimination, noncompetition agreement and trade secret issues, wage and hour (FLSA) compliance, employment contract disputes, and other matters, including class and collective actions.

Today we continue with our Year in Review segment, which looks at the key labor & employment law developments from 2016 in New York, the DC Metro Area, Massachusetts, and California, while offering our thoughts about 2017.  Today we turn to the DC Metro Area.  In addition, please join us in NYC on April 6, 2017 for Mintz Levin’s Third Annual Employment Law Summit as we address some of the key labor & employment issues impacting employers in 2017.  Register here

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The District of Columbia, Maryland (including Montgomery County) witnessed an active 2016 with respect to new and amended workplace laws that impose additional responsibilities on employers, and expand employee rights and avenues of enforcement.  Employers should be aware of these new requirements and take immediate action to comply with them.  We highlight below the most significant updates in both D.C. and Maryland; there were no changes or additions of significance in Virginia.

Continue Reading 2016 DC Metro Area Employment Law Year In Review

For our sibling blog ADR: Advice from the Trenches, my colleagues Kate Beattie and Don Davis have authored an analysis of employee class action waivers now that the Supreme Court has agreed to take up the issue this term.  For our prior analyses of class action waivers, see our prior Employment Matters posts on this topic.

 

On February 9th (in Boston) and February 16th (in New York), our Immigration Law colleagues will be offering live seminars designed for in-house counsel, immigration specialists, HR professionals, talent managers, and other internal stakeholders to review changes affecting the hiring and continued employment of foreign nationals. Find out more about it on our Immigration Law blog.

Employers across the country woke up this morning to news that a Texas District Court judge has blocked the DOL’s overtime rule from taking effect on December 1, 2016.  This represents a stunning turn of events for employers. They will now be able to continue to treat as exempt from overtime “white collar” workers who are paid a salary of at least the current minimum level of $23,660 per year without raising their salary to the proposed new minimum of at least $47,476, as the new rule had required. But, anticipating the new rule taking effect on December 1, many employers had already re-classified employees as non-exempt or raised their salaries to maintain the exemption or communicated the anticipated changes to their workforce.  And even those employers who have waited until the last minute to ready themselves for compliance have been left scratching their heads as to next steps, now that the rule will not, at least for now, take effect.  This post explores the court’s decision and employer’s potential responses to it.

Continue Reading With DOL’s OT Rule Blocked, Employers Are Left Asking “What’s Next?”

In a stunning turn of events for employers, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas has entered a nationwide injunction, ruling that the Department of Labor’s new overtime rule, which was slated to go into effect on December 1, is unlawful. As a result, at least for now, the rule will not take effect. This is a welcome (but perhaps temporary) victory for employers who will be able to continue to treat as exempt from overtime “white collar” workers who are paid a salary of at least the current minimum level of $23,660 per year without raising their salary to the proposed new minimum of at least $47,476. But the ruling may be unsettling for employers who already have re-classified employees or raised employees’ salaries to meet the requirements of the anticipated – – but for now dead on arrival – – new rule. Continue Reading BREAKING NEWS: New Overtime Rule Derailed; Will not Take Effect on December 1.

The wait is over!  This morning, the Department of Labor announced its Final Rule, which is aimed at expanding overtime eligibility for millions of American workers.  At its core, the final version of the rule doubled the minimum salary employers must pay “white collar” workers to maintain their exempt status.  The final rule did not, however, make any change to the job duties test.

Over the course of this and next week, we will discuss the rule’s impact and address related workplace issues on which employers should focus in advance of the rule’s December 1st implementation date.  We will also host a webinar.  For now, we’ll briefly summarize the key provisions from the rule.

Continue Reading The DOL Releases Its Final Rule Updating the FLSA White-Collar Overtime Regulations

On Wednesday, President Obama signed into law the groundbreaking Defend Trade Secrets Act, which for the first time creates a federal civil remedy for trade secret misappropriation and provides uniformity — and hopefully predictability — to what has been a patchwork body of law applied disparately among the states.

This alert provides an overview of the new law, including provisions that require the immediate attention of all employers.

 

From:             Ned Help

To:                  Carrie Counselor

Date:               May 4, 2016

Subject:          Employment Agreements for Employees Working In High Risk Countries

Carrie:

Thanks again for your guidance over the past several weeks.  Now that we’ve tackled updating our offer letters for employees working abroad, I’d like to look at our employment agreements.  What provisions should our company consider including in employment agreements for employees who will be working in high risk countries?

Thanks,
Ned

Continue Reading Innocents Abroad: Employment Agreements for Employees Working In High Risk Countries

The United States Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that Tyson Foods employees could use representative evidence to establish liability and damages for class certification purposes.  The opinion gives the plaintiffs’ class action bar a second victory in the Court’s current term, albeit a far narrower one than many commentators had feared.  (We covered the first victory here.)  Perhaps, more importantly, the Court sidestepped a seemingly more controversial issue regarding whether a class may include uninjured class members.  That issue will have to be decided another day.  We analyze the Tyson Foods opinion below.

Continue Reading Taking an Evidentiary Approach, the Supreme Court Rules that Employees Can Use Representative Samples to Establish Classwide Liability and Damages, But It Leaves Open Question of Whether Classes Can Include Uninjured Class Members

We are pleased to report that Employment Matters was recently ranked as the No. 1 Employment Law Blog and the No. 10 overall Legal Blog in LexBlog’s AmLaw 200 Blog Benchmark Report, which you can read here.  These rankings are based on overall traffic so we absolutely could not have done this without our readers (that’s you!).  Thank you for your continued support.  We will endeavor to keep up the good work and continue to generate content that will help you manage your workforces and reduce your exposure.

With that bit of self-indulgent throat-clearing now out of the way, we need to ask you a quick favor: If you’ve enjoyed reading Employment Matters, please note that nominations are now open for the Blawg 100 Amici, the American Bar Association’s list of top 100 best legal blogs.  Since rankings are based on nominations (both the quantity and quality thereof), we would greatly appreciate your support by nominating us via the ABA’s nomination form.  Nominations are due by Sunday, August 16.  You will have to complete some information such as your name and email address.  You will also have to input the Employment Matters URL (which is http://www.employmentmattersblog.com/) and a link to a recent blog post (you can use this one: http://www.employmentmattersblog.com/2015/07/dol-releases-guidance-indicating-that-independent-contractor-classification-is-restricted-to-a-narrow-class-of-workers/).  You will also be asked to state why you are a “fan” of the blog in 500 words or less, and we have no problem if you opt for the “less” as long as you say something!

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

We thank you in advance for any support you can provide here.

Best,
Michael Arnold and David Barmak, Employment Matters Editors