1. This week, we welcome Barbara Harris. Barbara is a Senior Labor & Employment Editor at Thomson Reuters Practical Law, and she spoke to us about navigating the patchwork of state and local paid sick leave laws. Until the federal government passes a fix, like the preemption law we discussed on last week’s show, this will remain a concern for employers:

    This is a "Tip of the Week" segment from Employment Law This Week® (Episode 95: Week of November 20, 2017), an online series by Epstein Becker Green. youtu.be/C-JHarLaHf4

    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The “Tip of the Week” offers one perspective on possible human resource ideas or business practices. It presents the perspective of an individual not affiliated with Epstein Becker Green and should not be considered legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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  2. Welcome to Employment Law This Week®! Subscribe to our channel for new episodes every Monday!

    (1) New York Announces New Employee Scheduling Regulations

    Our top story: Statewide employee scheduling rules are coming to New York. The state Labor Department is advancing regulations limiting on-call and just-in-time scheduling. The proposed rules require additional pay for employees scheduled on short notice, but would not prohibit the practice altogether. While the regulations appear to primarily target retailers, who commonly use on-call scheduling, they will impact other industries as well. Here’s Jeff Landes from Epstein Becker Green with more.

    (2) Senate Confirms White House Nominee for NLRB General Counsel

    Management-side labor lawyer Peter Robb has been confirmed as the next National Labor Relations Board General Counsel. The Board’s General Counsel serves a critical policy role at the Labor Board, deciding which issues to pursue in investigations and litigation. Robb is expected to move away from the expansive agenda of his predecessor in many areas, including the broadened joint-employer standard. An accomplished attorney, Rob played a key role in the Reagan Administration’s response to the air traffic controllers union strike, which resulted in their firing - a pivotal event in the modern history of labor relations.

    (3) EEOC Touts Major Decrease in Charge Backlog

    The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission says its charge backlog has dropped to a ten year low. Last week, the agency released its fiscal year 2017 Performance and Accountability Report highlighting its work over the past year. According to the report, the EEOC resolved 99,109 charges, and reduced the charge workload by 16.2 percent, bringing its total workload to just over 61,000 charges. The agency filed 184 merit lawsuits, more than double the 2016 number, and recovered approximately $484 million dollars for parties charging workplace discrimination. This includes $355 million in settlements and other administrative enforcement and $42 million through litigation.

    (4) Montgomery County, Maryland: Latest to Implement $15 Minimum Wage

    A $15 dollar minimum wage on the way in Montgomery County, Maryland. Montgomery County joins neighboring Washington, DC, in implementing the $15 dollar minimum. Two states and at least six other jurisdictions have enacted similar measures. Montgomery County’s law establishes a slower path to $15 than DC, with large employers reaching that level in 2021. The law also allows for an "opportunity wage" of 85 percent of the minimum wage for employees under 20 years old in their first six months of employment.

    (5) Tip of the Week

    This week, we welcome Barbara Harris. Barbara is a Senior Labor & Employment Editor at Thomson Reuters Practical Law, and she spoke to us about navigating the patchwork of state and local paid sick leave laws. Until the federal government passes a fix, like the preemption law we discussed on last week’s show, this will remain a concern for employers:

    “Drafting a legally compliant paid sick leave policy has become one of the biggest headaches for multi-jurisdictional employers, but there are several steps they can take when embarking on this task. First they need to understand the applicable state and local sick leave laws wherever they have employees. Next they need to decide whether to have a generic PTO or paid time off policy or a specific sick leave policy that just covers the uses under the applicable laws. This may depend on where the employees are located and how many jurisdictions they have employees working in. Sometimes the best starting place for employers is to use their existing policies. Those policies may really be more compliant with existing, with the applicable laws than they thought.”

    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The “Tip of the Week” offers one perspective on possible human resource ideas or business practices. It presents the perspective of an individual not affiliated with Epstein Becker Green and should not be considered legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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  3. The EEOC launches a new nationwide EEOC Public Portal where individuals can inquire about discrimination online. Starting this month, individuals can submit inquiries and requests for intake interviews online. They can also digitally sign and file a charge prepared by the EEOC and engage with the agency as the charge progresses. The portal, which was piloted in five regional EEOC offices, aims to increase efficiency at the agency and make interaction easier for individuals. Yael Spiewak, an Associate from Epstein Becker Green, tells us what this could mean for employers.

    This is an extended interview from Employment Law This Week® (Episode 94: Week of November 13, 2017), an online series by Epstein Becker Green. youtu.be/Qad09Nl9YN4

    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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  4. Gabrielle Lyse Brown, Director of Diversity and Inclusion at the New York City Bar Association. She spoke to us about the role in-house counsel can play in increasing diversity:

    “In-house counsel play a critical role in increasing diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. You can leverage the relationships with their partner firms to continue to implement the most efficient practices for diversity and inclusion. To build on our diversity benchmarking research, the city bar has collected extensive qualitative data and facilitated discussions to discover what some of these best strategies are. Among the most popular include conversations with law firms and clients to communicate goals, address blind spots and share better practices. We’ve outlined these and other practices in our 2016 diversity benchmarking report and will continue to work in the year ahead to encourage collaboration fostering these initiatives.”

    This is a "Tip of the Week" segment from Employment Law This Week® (Episode 94: Week of November 13, 2017), an online series by Epstein Becker Green. youtu.be/Qad09Nl9YN4

    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The “Tip of the Week” offers one perspective on possible human resource ideas or business practices. It presents the perspective of an individual not affiliated with Epstein Becker Green and should not be considered legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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  5. Welcome to Employment Law This Week®! Subscribe to our channel for new episodes every Monday!

    (1) EEOC Online Public Portal Goes Nationwide

    Our top story this week: The EEOC launches a new nationwide EEOC Public Portal where individuals can inquire about discrimination online. Starting this month, individuals can submit inquiries and requests for intake interviews online. They can also digitally sign and file a charge prepared by the EEOC and engage with the agency as the charge progresses. The portal, which was piloted in five regional EEOC offices, aims to increase efficiency at the agency and make interaction easier for individuals. Yael Spiewak, an Associate from Epstein Becker Green, tells us what this could mean for employers:

    “Individuals now can file their inquiries and set up interviews to get the ball rolling with their EEOC claims and charges online. What it means for employers is they could potentially expect to see an increase in inquiries, an increase in interviews, an increase ultimately in charges brought against them. We also expect due to the now tech savvy EEO approach that younger employees may find it easier and less of a hurdle to actually making those inquiries, setting up those interviews, and bringing charges against employers.”

    (2) House Members Propose Paid Sick Leave Preemption Law

    Is a federal paid leave act on the horizon? Three Republican representatives have proposed a bill that would exempt employers from state and local paid sick and family leave laws if they meet minimum thresholds for paid leave and workplace flexibility. The bill would provide a solution for companies operating in multiple jurisdictions, who face the challenge of complying with a patchwork of leave laws. The proposal uses ERISA’s existing preemption mechanism to block state and local leave laws for those that opt in. The bill has a long road ahead, but if the bill is signed into law, it would be the first federal law to address paid leave.

    (3) DOL to Appeal Texas Ruling That Blocked Overtime Exemptions

    The Department of Labor may appeal a Texas ruling that blocked new overtime exemption thresholds. The DOL filed a notice of appeal with the Fifth Circuit, and announced that it will ask the Court to hold the appeal in abeyance while it undertakes more rulemaking on the issue. The federal judge who blocked the rule concluded that the DOL did not have the authority to make the white collar exemptions dependent on a minimum salary level. With this notice, the DOL is preserving its right to challenge this limit on its authority while it writes new regulations. If the motion to stay the litigation is granted, and the DOL publishes new regulations, it may ask the Fifth Circuit to declare the original ruling moot.

    (4) New California Law Makes Contractors Jointly Liable for Their Subs’ Unpaid Wages

    Beginning January 1, 2018, general contractors in California will be jointly liable if their subcontractor fails to pay wages due. Under the new law, general contractors’ liability will extend to unpaid wages, fringe benefits, and all other benefit payments or contributions. Direct contractors will have the right to request subcontractors' employee wage statements, payroll records, and project information, and may withhold as "disputed" all sums owed if a subcontractor fails to provide this information in a timely manner.

    (5) Tip of the Week

    Gabrielle Lyse Brown, Director of Diversity and Inclusion at the New York City Bar Association. She spoke to us about the role in-house counsel can play in increasing diversity:

    “In-house counsel play a critical role in increasing diversity and inclusion in the legal profession. You can leverage the relationships with their partner firms to continue to implement the most efficient practices for diversity and inclusion. To build on our diversity benchmarking research, the city bar has collected extensive qualitative data and facilitated discussions to discover what some of these best strategies are. Among the most popular include conversations with law firms and clients to communicate goals, address blind spots and share better practices. We’ve outlined these and other practices in our 2016 diversity benchmarking report and will continue to work in the year ahead to encourage collaboration fostering these initiatives.”

    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The “Tip of the Week” offers one perspective on possible human resource ideas or business practices. It presents the perspective of an individual not affiliated with Epstein Becker Green and should not be considered legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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Employment Law This Week®

Epstein Becker Green PRO

Welcome to Employment Law This Week®, presented by Epstein Becker Green. This online video program – among the first of its kind in the legal industry – tracks the latest developments that could impact you and your workforce. The series features three…


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Welcome to Employment Law This Week®, presented by Epstein Becker Green. This online video program – among the first of its kind in the legal industry – tracks the latest developments that could impact you and your workforce. The series features three components: Trending News, Deep Dives, and Monthly Rundowns. Learn more at ebglaw.com/employment-law-this-week/

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