As we discussed yesterday at Mintz Levin’s Third Annual Employment Law Summit, big changes are likely in the offing as all three branches of our federal government begin to deal with labor and employment issues following President Trump’s election. President Trump’s first 100 days has already included action on a number of employment and labor law issues we’re following here at Mintz Levin.  The Administration has enacted or signaled changes – some potentially significant – in executive orders and through pronouncements of regulatory and enforcement priorities that promise to impact the field of labor and employment law.  Additionally, the expected confirmation this week of Judge Neil Gorsuch means all hands on deck at the United States Supreme Court, and congressional action so far suggests a potentially employer-friendly climate on Capitol Hill.

Below, we highlight changes in the leadership, regulation, and likely course forward for each of the branches of the federal government, and offer our predictions for 2017 and beyond under the current Administration.  Continue Reading Steady as She Goes or Charting a New Course? Employment and Labor Signals in the Trump Administration

The Trump campaign promised to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act. On the campaign trail, candidate Trump was particularly critical of the ACA’s individual mandate, the subsidization of premium charges to older individuals by younger individuals, and the coverage mandates on insurance products offered on the exchanges. In contrast, he was in favor of keeping the ban on imposing pre-existing condition limitations and allowing dependents to remain on their parents’ coverage to age 26. So we are not without some clues as to the details of the ACA’s replacement.

As the campaign promise morphs into legislation, there are some sources that give us a sense of what the future has in store for the regulation of the U.S. health care system. These include:

This post examines the Trump/Pence transition plan. In the next two posts, we will turn our attention to the Ryan and Price plans. All three plans share common features. The particular elements and terms of these plans have been the subject of much study and commentary. Much less is known about how these components will fit together. Nevertheless, we expect that these plans taken together contain many if not most of the elements of the ACA’s replacement.

Continue Reading The Future of the ACA (Week 3): The Trump Plan, “Healthcare Reform to Make America Great Again”

The Affordable Care Act is the single most important piece of Federal social legislation in the United States in more than a generation, but with the election of Donald J. Trump as President its fate is now uncertain. Its core policy concerns and principal goals, i.e., to expand medical coverage, increase the quality of medical outcomes, and constrain costs, nevertheless remain. What is about to change is the “means whereby” these goals might be accomplished.

Even before the new administration takes office, there is at least one thing that seems certain: there will be no going back to the status quo ante. While the law was the subject of withering criticism by candidate Trump and his proxies, their mantra was and remains “repeal and replace.” At the end of the process, it is unlikely that we be back at March 23, 2010 (the date of the ACA’s enactment). We will instead be somewhere else. What remains to be seen is the extent to which the replacement resembles the ACA. This post and those that follow will endeavor to chart the arc of the replacement process. In the weeks and months that follow, we plan to report on, and, with the help of a roster of knowable guests, examine both the process and the outcome.

Continue Reading The Future of the Affordable Care Act (Week 1): Assessing the New Normal

shutterstock_134983682Donald Trump has become part of the national conversation.  Not a single day goes by now without Mr. Trump filling up at least one news cycle.  His recent success reminds me of a fantastic exchange in Private Parts when a researcher is explaining Howard Stern’s improbable success to the infamous Pi … let’s just call him Phil Vomitz:

Researcher: The average radio listener listens for eighteen minutes. The average Howard Stern fan listens for – are you ready for this? – an hour and twenty minutes.

Phil Vomitz: How can that be?

Researcher: Answer most commonly given? “I want to see what he’ll say next.”

Phil Vomitz: Okay, fine. But what about the people who hate Stern?

Researcher: Good point. The average Stern hater listens for two and a half hours a day.

Phil Vomitz: But… if they hate him, why do they listen?

Researcher: Most common answer? “I want to see what he’ll say next.”

Not surprisingly, not a single day also goes by without a workplace water-cooler (or better yet, chat room) conversation about Mr. Trump (or any of the other presidential candidates.)  It can run the spectrum from some friendly banter among co-workers, to a serious dialogue about the issues facing this country, all the way to a heated disagreement coupled with threats of violence.  And it begs the question: how can employers respond to employee political speech in the workplace?  This post addresses that issue.

Continue Reading Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Everywhere All the Time, Including in the Workplace – What’s an Employer to Do?