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

Category Archives: Highlight

Subscribe to Highlight RSS Feed

BREAKING: Connecticut Supreme Court Rules Restaurant Cannot Apply Tip Credit to Pizza Delivery Drivers

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

The Connecticut Supreme Court, in a unanimous decision that will be officially released April 4, 2017, has ruled that employers may not use the “tip credit” for pizza delivery drivers and therefore, the employees must be paid the standard minimum wage. You can download the decision in Amaral Brothers, Inc. v. Department of Labor here. … Continue Reading

What Does “At Will” Employment Really Mean?

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

Years ago, I recall having a friendly conversation with another attorney in Connecticut where the topic turned to the notion of “At Will” employment. When we couldn’t settle on an answer, we moved on to talking about whether the Hartford Whalers would ever come back. I think we had a better answer for that question:… Continue Reading

Second Circuit Rejects Employee’s Trypanophobia Claim

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

You don’t need to look for a needle in a haystack to figure out this latest case from the Second Circuit. But you do need to know what “trypanophobia” is. Ready? Fear of needles. That becomes important in a Second Circuit court decision yesterday holding that an employee’s fear of needles prevented that employee from… Continue Reading

Four Compliance Items Connecticut Employers Can Check Now

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

It’s a challenge for employers to keep up with changes to employment laws. What’s the current status? What do I need to change? So, here are four quick things you can look at right now to ensure that you are up to compliance in Connecticut. Connecticut increased the minimum wage effective January 1, 2017.  It’s now… Continue Reading

Where Are Your Employees? (Hint: It May Not Be Facebook Anymore)

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Social Media

I recently gave a presentation on social media to a local non-profit and had the opportunity to review some of the latest statistics when it comes to the use of social media. Frankly, I knew that there has been a shift away from Facebook for some younger people but even I was surprised by the… Continue Reading

A Rare Look Into An Employee’s Duty of Loyalty to the Employer

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance

After nine-plus years of writing about employment law in Connecticut, it’s getting to be pretty rare to find a topic that I haven’t at least touched upon, but here’s one: The Duty of Loyalty. Indeed, a new Connecticut Supreme Court case is giving me the opportunity to do so. The case arises from an employee who,… Continue Reading

The Dialogue: What Legislation We’re Keeping Our Eyes On

Posted in Highlight, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

If at first you succeed, try it again.  Well, that may not be how the saying goes, but the first back-and-forth post between me and Nina Pirrotti, an employee-side attorney, was so well received that we’re back for another conversation.  Today’s topic: What legislation are we both keeping our eyes out for at the Connecticut… Continue Reading

Breaking: Conn. Supreme Court Clarifies ABC Test for Independent Contractors

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

I’m back with news of a relatively big decision today from the Connecticut Supreme Court. In the decision, the Court clarified an important question that the Connecticut Department of Labor had been pushing hard.  It will be welcome news for businesses in the state. The issue was this: If an independent contractor (and his or… Continue Reading

No Love for Guns in Workplace Is Protected, Court Finds

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

While the calendar may read Valentine’s Day, I’ve tackled more than my fair share of love-themed posts in the past filled with roses and chocolates. So instead, I’m going to go in a different direction entirely: Guns. (Though query whether the music group Guns ‘n’ Roses would care to disagree with me.) See, there was… Continue Reading

The Dialogue: Hiring Employees the Right Way (From Different Sides)

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

I’ll confess. I’m excited about today’s post.  It’s hard to find something new to do after nearly 10 years of blogging, but I think today’s post is pretty innovative. Unless you read The New York Times “The Conversation” which we’ve tried to copy emulate here.  Except this post (and hopefully others) will be called “The Dialogue”.  Somehow different,… Continue Reading

Mary Tyler Moore Taught Us One of the Best Employment Discrimination Lessons

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

Mary Richards’ job interview with Lou Grant is, perhaps one of the most famous job interviews ever. So says Time magazine. Before I go on, though, there are probably more than a few of you who don’t know what I’m talking about. But with the passing of Mary Tyler Moore earlier today here in Connecticut,… Continue Reading

Could “The Last Jedi” Actually Be Practicing Religion in Your Workplace?

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight

Yesterday, news came out that Episode 8 (I mean, VIII) of the Star Wars series would be named “The Last Jedi”. Which reminded me about an article in The New York Times I saw a few weeks ago that I had been meaning to write about. Turns out there are, according a BBC report cited… Continue Reading

New York (State and City) Imposes New Rules for Freelancers, State Contracts

Posted in Highlight, Laws and Regulations, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

My colleagues, Clarisse Thomas, Keegan Drenosky and I have been busy keeping track of the developments in New York which may impact Connecticut employers with cross-border business.  Here are two of the most recent developments. Freelance Isn’t Free The New York City Council has enacted and the Mayor has signed a new law applicable to… Continue Reading

Connecticut Legislative Session Preview: Is a New State Overtime Rule In Play?

Posted in Highlight, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

The Connecticut General Assembly is back in session and with significant budget deficits looming, it’s not going to be an easy year for legislators. From a labor and employment law session, once again it will be interesting to see what will be seriously considered. A Bloomberg Law article late last week suggested that Democrats in… Continue Reading

Protecting Confidential Information from Untrustworthy Employees

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

My colleague Gary Starr returns today with a story worth reading about the need for employers to secure confidential information.  Although it is based on Massachusetts, the concepts it covers may have some carryover to employers elsewhere as well.   Employers that maintain records of their employees and customers and allow employees have access to confidential… Continue Reading

Punitive Damages Not Available For State Employment Discrimination Claims

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Laws and Regulations, Litigation

In a decision that will be officially released next week, the Connecticut Supreme Court has, at last, ruled that punitive damages are not an available remedy for state law employment discrimination claims. You may recall that I discussed the Appellate Court’s decision that had originally found the same thing back in 2015.  The case, Tomick… Continue Reading

Looking Back and Ahead to Employment Law in 2017

Posted in Highlight, Legislative Developments

For many years, I’ve used my first post each year to look back and ahead at the area of employment law.  My record of predictions has been about what you would expect someone predicting the future — about average. Last year at this time, I said a few things though that seem to resonate with… Continue Reading

General Assembly Committee Releases Report Critical of CHRO Complaint Processing

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

Last week, the Legislative Program Review and Investigations Committee released a 129-page report on the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, with a focus on Discrimination Complaint Processing.  You can download it here. The report is worth a deep dive at another time, and a final report from the Committee is due in January 2017…. Continue Reading

Deep Dive Into CHRO Case Statistics Show Increases in “Harassment” Claims

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

As I did last year, after I posted on the general statistics of the CHRO to see if we could glean any trends, I took a deeper dive into what the statistics this year show.  And there were definitely a few surprises. Obviously, at the risk of repeating yesterday’s post, FY 2015-2016 was a very big… Continue Reading

New Statistics From CHRO Show Continued Rise in Discrimination Complaints

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight

At this week’s CHRO information session, I was able to review the new statistics released by the CHRO this fall regarding case filings and dismissals. They’ve now been posted live on the CHRO’s website here. It’s something I’ve covered each year and I’m always fascinated by what these statistics show — and don’t show. What’s… Continue Reading

CHRO Acknowledges Faults with Case Assessment Review Process But A Fix May Be Hard

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

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to sit on a panel discussion sponsored by the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. Charles Krich, a Principal Attorney, also spoke and it was moderated by Deputy Director Cheryl Sharp. The purpose of the discussion, before dozens of practitioners in the state, was to look at the state of affairs at… Continue Reading

CHRO Informational Session for Attorneys Being Held Today

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Highlight, Laws and Regulations

If you don’t have plans this afternoon, I recommend joining me over at a panel discussion at the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities headquarters in downtown Hartford. There, the CHRO will be holding an informational session for attorneys to discuss its practices and procedures. As described by the CHRO: The Commission on Human Rights… Continue Reading

If You Do Any Hiring, New I-9 Forms Must be Used Effective January 2017

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

So did everyone enjoy Thanksgiving? I’m still recovering from my vacation so in the meantime, my colleagues, Brenda Eckert and Ashley Mendoza, return today with a post about updated I-9 forms that all employers MUST start using in January 2017.  If you do any hiring, this post ought to be front and center to fulfill… Continue Reading

BREAKING: Judge Orders Halt to New Overtime Rule

Posted in Featured, Highlight, Laws and Regulations, Wage & Hour

I have this running joke with my wife that anytime I’m on vacation, it seems that big employment news breaks. And this vacation is no exception. And it’s probably the biggest employment law news this year. Not the best time for me to have to write a blog post on my phone.  Ah well.  You… Continue Reading