Connecticut Employment Law Blog Insight on Labor & Employment Developments for Connecticut Businesses

Category Archives: Highlight

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Details of New Overtime Regulations Released Monday Night

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Laws and Regulations, Wage & Hour

On Monday night, details of the revised white-collar overtime regulations were released. But we’ll know more once the actual details get posted on the Department of Labor website on Tuesday. (Bloomberg was the first to report it Monday evening.) (Update 6/30/15: The proposed regulations are now available online from the U.S. Department of Labor here.)… Continue Reading

Paid Family & Medical Leave Program and CHRO Changes Get Revived in Budget Implementer

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

The Connecticut General Assembly is finalizing its budget implementation bill today and suffice to say that there are more than a few surprises in there. (CT News Junkie first highlighted it in a tweet, it should be noted.) For employers, buried deep in the bill is Section 422 entitled: “PAID FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE IMPLEMENTATION”. … Continue Reading

The “Number Two” Reason on How to Avoid GINA Liability

Posted in Data Privacy, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Laws and Regulations, Litigation

My colleague, Marc Herman, returns today to talk about a subject that doesn’t get a lot of attention but may as the technology makes genetic information more accessible.  But just because it’s more accessible, doesn’t make it right. Particularly if you suspect something “smelly” in your workplace.  It’s not often that it comes up, but… Continue Reading

Can Employee Display a Confederate Flag on Facebook as Free Speech? Or Can Employer Take Action?

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

There’s been lots of talk lately about the Confederate flag and its symbolism in the aftermath of the Charleston shootings. But I wondered: How has this flag come up in the context of employment discrimination cases? It’s actually referenced a bunch according to a quick search by Google.  A case out of Alabama alleged a… Continue Reading

Intern Anti-Discrimination Bill Signed By Governor

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Laws and Regulations, Legislative Developments

Capitol Watch – The Hartford Courant’s political site – tweeted the following yesterday: Gov. Malloy has signed a bill protecting interns from workplace harassment and discrimination. — Capitol Watch (@capitolwatch) June 22, 2015 And a review of the Governor’s website reflects that approval in the bill notification release. (I read them so you don’t have… Continue Reading

CBA Annual Meeting Employment Law Recap: Ways to Avoid Getting Sued

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance

No one will ever mistake the Connecticut Legal Conference, run by the Connecticut Bar Association, for, say a glitzy gaming conference. But if you were fortunate to attend, you had the opportunity to hear some pretty good speakers talk about employment law for several hours. Among the topics were a discussion on the Ellen Pao… Continue Reading

Revisiting Reasonable Accommodation Under the ADA — Being “Effective”

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Class Actions, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Litigation

What does it really mean to provide a reasonable accommodation to an employee who has a disability? That’s a question I talk about a bunch with clients.  The employee may request one thing but the employer may think that another accommodation can accomplish close to the same thing, perhaps at a lower cost.  Who wins?… Continue Reading

Can You Still Have Dress Codes After Abercrombie Decision?

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Litigation

I’m not a fan of click-bait, so if you clicked the headline just to know whether your company can still have a dress code policy after the Supreme Court’s decision in EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch, the answer is “yes”. But there’s an important caveat and for that, you’ll need to read on. The Court’s… Continue Reading

MOVE Act Introduced; Non-Compete Agreements Would Be Limited, if Passed

Posted in Highlight, Legislative Developments

While I normally make my year-end reflections at, well, year end, I can’t help but take this moment to see the big picture: We’re hearing an awful lot about restrictive covenants. These covenants — often in the shape of non-compete clauses or non-solicitation (of employees or customers) clauses — have become popular because companies are… Continue Reading

Back from the Dead: Procedural Changes Coming to CHRO and New Protections for Domestic Workers

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Featured, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Laws and Regulations, Legislative Developments, Manager & HR Pro’s Resource Center

So in a post earlier on Friday, I recapped most of the employment law legislation that passed — except one. That bill, Senate Bill 446, was titled “AN ACT CONCERNING THE DEFINITION OF THE TERM “DOMESTIC WORKER”.   Innocuous enough, right? But as it turns out, that bill was used as a cover to pass through… Continue Reading

BREAKING – U.S. Supreme Court Holds That Motive, Not Knowledge, Is Critical in Disparate Treatment Cases

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

The long-awaited EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch case was released by the U.S. Supreme Court this morning, reversing the Tenth Circuit’s decision. You can download it here. For anyone following the case, the decision shouldn’t come as a big surprise.  I’ve talked about the case before here and here. The main holding of the case… Continue Reading

Legislative Update: Mandatory Double Damages for OT Violations Bill Passes; Other Bills Await Votes

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

We’re nearly at the end of the legislative session and the bills are coming fast and furious. Late Friday, the General Assembly passed a bill (Senate Bill 914) that mandates (rather than allows) double damages to be granted in instances where an employer failed to pay an employee the proper minimum wage or overtime pay…. Continue Reading

General Assembly Passes Bill Protecting Interns from Discrimination and Harassment

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments, Manager & HR Pro’s Resource Center

Believe it or not, harassment against summer interns isn’t directly prohibited under Connecticut law.  (But treating them like employees without paying them is against the law.) This is not, however, a column about the best ways to harass your interns.  Indeed, regardless of the law, it’s bad in so many ways.  (And the CHRO has… Continue Reading

“I Don’t Want to Be Alone Anymore” – Refusing to Meet with Female Subordinates One-on-One

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments

I confess that when I first heard the story last week that some Capitol Hill lawmakers were refusing to meet alone with female subordinates, I didn’t pay much attention to it.   Lawmakers just being lawmakers. (I was also reminded of the old Billy Joel song, I Don’t Want to Be Alone Anymore, but I digress….)… Continue Reading

Punitive Damages Not Authorized for State Employment Discrimination Claims, Says Court

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

In yesterday’s post, I talked about the case of Tomick v. UPS in looking at the prima facie case for disability discrimination. But the new Appellate Court case may be even more significant for its discussion of punitive damages.  In doing so, the Appellate Court attempts to resolve a split that had developed at the… Continue Reading

Being “Qualified” Doesn’t Necessarily Mean Being Able to Perform “Essential Functions” of Job

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

Back in September 2013, I reported on a seemingly never-ending case of Tomick v. UPS and mentioned that it was headed to its second appeal at the Connecticut Appellate Court. (I talked about the history of the case and the first appeal back in 2012 too.  Amazingly, it dates to a termination decision way back… Continue Reading

Be Smarter than the Average Bear: ADA Accommodations at Camp

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight

So “bear” with me on this one. Today is Yogi Berra’s 90th birthday. The Yankee great is famous for not only his play as a baseball player but also for his sayings, such as “Half the lies they tell about me aren’t true.” He was so popular he was said to inspire the name of… Continue Reading

“Pay Secrecy” Bill Goes Above and Beyond Other Proposals

Posted in Class Actions, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

As I said before, the notion that this might be a quiet year for employment law legislation at the Connecticut General Assembly has long since left the train station. Indeed, we’ve appear to be swinging completely in the opposite direction. Anything and everything appears up discussion and possible passage this year — including items that really stood… Continue Reading

Predicting the Future? Proposal Would Require Set Schedules by Employers Or Else

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

Over the last few weeks, I’ve heard lots of grumbling about the employment law proposals being floated at the Connecticut General Assembly.  But it wasn’t until recently, that I understood how serious one proposal is. Last week, proponents of House Bill 6933 held a press conference to have the legislature pass a measure requiring employers to post… Continue Reading

Don’t Worry, Be Happy: Supreme Court’s Decision on Conciliation a Yawn for Connecticut Employers

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Class Actions, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Litigation

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the EEOC has a duty to conciliate that has go a bit beyond words before filing suit as a party.  In the case, EEOC v. Mach Mining (download here), the employer argued that the EEOC cannot just say that it has tried to resolve the matter through conciliation;… Continue Reading

When Reviewing a Reinstatement Decision by an Arbitrator, Consider Over a Dozen Factors

Posted in Highlight, Labor Law & NLRB, Litigation

If you like getting lost on roads with your head spinning on which way to go, this is your post.  (Everyone else, well, try to keep up.) I recap a case for companies with unions to pay attention to. Let’s start with this example: Employee X is required by law to report suspected abuse in her job. She fails… Continue Reading

Retaliation Claims Still Remind Us: Scrutinize Your Employment Decisions

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight

I know. We’re a bit of a broken record here. Another post on the perils on retaliation claims. (I’m resisting adding the “so sue me” joke here.) But new decisions from the courts keep coming out which give us an opportunity to do refreshers to employers and provide subtle tweaks to the associated wisdom surrounding… Continue Reading

Hiring Without Employment Law Headaches: Five Tips for Employers

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Manager & HR Pro’s Resource Center, Wage & Hour

On Friday, I had the opportunity to speak to the Human Resource Association of Greater New Haven. My sincere thanks to them for the invitation. The group asked me to talk about various legal traps employers face in the hiring process and solutions to avoiding those issues.  Here are some of the points we talked… Continue Reading