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Category Archives: Human Resources (HR) Compliance

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EEOC: Bathroom Access Rights Guaranteed By Title VII

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

Last fall, I raised the issue of bathroom access for employees that corresponds with their gender identity. The issue, however, that seems to get the most press is restroom access. Indeed, we’re now getting federal guidance on how to deal with the issue of restroom access. That remains one of the bigger issues (a proposition up… Continue Reading

Connecticut Businesses Should Exercise Caution on DOL’s New FMLA Guide for Employers

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

Over the years in the employment law “blawgosphere” (isn’t there a better term by now?), I’ve had the pleasure of meeting with and conferring with several other attorneys who blog. One of those is Jeff Nowak, whose FMLA Insights blog has become a go-to place on all things FMLA. So, it was no surprise yesterday… Continue Reading

Secret Wisdom from the “Stars” of the Legal Profession

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance

Last night, I had the opportunity to attend the Connecticut Bar Association’s awards dinner — titled, “Celebrate with the Stars”. It was a lovely event filled with accolades for some of the state’s best and brightest in the legal profession and beyond. Yeah yeah, I can hear some of you say. Just another lawyers’ dinner…. Continue Reading

EEOC Requesting Information? Be Wary What You Tell Fellow Employees

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Class Actions, Discrimination & Harassment, Featured, Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Litigation, Manager & HR Pro’s Resource Center

Picture this scenario: You come into your office one morning to learn that an employee has filed a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) claiming that you failed to accommodate his disability reasonably and then terminated his employment because of his disability. As if that isn’t challenging enough, many months afterwards,… Continue Reading

The Rights and Limitations of Associational Discrimination under the ADA

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

While a recent Second Circuit case received lots of headlines regarding its discussion of individual liability under FMLA, the case has some other nuggets for employers to understand, as my colleague Gary Starr explains in today’s post.  Buried in Graziadio v. Culinary Institute of America case is a reference to the fact that the federal appeals… Continue Reading

Individual Employees Can Be Sued For FMLA Violations, Court Rules

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

It’s been a big couple of days for court opinions. Today’s turn: FMLA lawsuits. When we last talked about the FMLA, it was in the context of the fact that sometimes things about the law are bit complicated. Well, if you didn’t like the intricacies of the FMLA before, this new decision isn’t going to… Continue Reading

Connecticut District Court Allows Transgender Discrimination Claim to Proceed Under Title VII & CFEPA

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

In an decision of first impression in Connecticut, a federal court on Friday ruled that a transgender discrimination claim based on a failure to hire can proceed under both Title VII and Connecticut’s counterpart, CFEPA. While the groundbreaking decision in Fabian v. Hospital of Central Connecticut (download here)  is sure to be the subject of… Continue Reading

Keep Calm & Carry On: New Federal White-Collar Overtime Rules Still Not Released

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

Over the last few days, Twitter has been a-twittering with buzz that the Department of Labor has sent the final overtime rules to the OMB. This is the equivalent of one department sending another one an e-mail with the new rules. Why? Because it’s just the next step in getting the rules approved.  But nothing… Continue Reading

Why the NLRB Should Matter To You if You’re Still Union-Free

Posted in Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Labor Law & NLRB

Next week, I will be speaking at the CBIA Annual HR Conference along with my colleague Jarad Lucan about why you should care about the NLRB. Unfortunately, if you don’t already have tickets, it’s sold out. It’s being held at the Radisson in Cromwell, Connecticut and features some great topics for consideration.  But the basic… Continue Reading

Independent Contractor Ruling: A Deeper Dive

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

As I return from some time off, my colleagues, Gary Starr and Chris Engler, have dug a bit deeper into the Connecticut Supreme Court decision from last week and issued this alert which we have also sent to clients.  A deeply divided Connecticut Supreme Court recently issued a long-awaited decision, Standard Oil v. Administrator, regarding… Continue Reading

Lunch with the Boss Now Protected Concerted Activity?

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance, Labor Law & NLRB, Litigation

My colleagues Gary Starr and Jarad Lucan return today with a post that we have sent out as client alert, but which may be of interest to readers of the blog as well.  It tackles the subject of protected concerted activity.  (Hint: It may be broader than you think.) Is a non-union employee who speaks… Continue Reading

“Ban the Box” Bill Would Also Protect Felons From Discrimination

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

As the General Assembly session heats up, several legislators are calling for passage of the so-called “Ban the Box” legislation. Versions of this have been floated for years, but one legislator called this year’s bill the “most important bill” to come out of the legislature this year. So, that means that employers ought to keep… Continue Reading

Hostile Work Environment Creator, Equal Opportunity Offender or Something Else?

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

You work for a privately-owned multinational conglomerate with a high-profile CEO who loves Twitter and can’t stop talking. And that CEO, outside of work, has been critical of lots of people. In doing so, however, the CEO has made particular comments about certain women, comments such as: “She wanted to breast pump in front of… Continue Reading

How to Fire Your Employee Without Getting Sued

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

Before I even begin this post, let me advance the disclaimer right off the bat: Despite the title of this post, there is no sure-fire way to fire an employee without getting sued. Indeed, the title is a bit of a misnomer.  It’s often been paraphrased that anyone can sue anyone else for anything at… Continue Reading

Did You Hear the One About the “Joint Employer”?

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

It’s hard getting excited about joint employment. In fact, it’s pretty yawn-inducing.  (Seriously, get a cup of coffee before reading this.) But a few weeks back, the Department of Labor issued some new guidance on the topic that has been making the rounds of the employment law blogs. Now, you might be asking — what… Continue Reading

Can You Love Employment Law and Love Valentine’s Day?

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

For years, I’ve been “warning” about the upcoming holiday of Valentine’s Day. Back in 2011, I recapped several cases where employees’ inappropriate behavior on this day of love, led to lawsuits. Apparently, there were some people who didn’t read the blog, because just a few years after that, I recapped a few more cases where… Continue Reading

Winter Update: What You Might Have Missed in Employment Law

Posted in Human Resources (HR) Compliance

My colleagues at Shipman & Goodwin have, for a lot longer than I have been doing this blog, have been producing the Employment Law Letter recapping some stories you might have missed over each quarter or so. This week, a new newsletter was released and it touches on several topics of interest. It recaps a… Continue Reading

Independent Contractors: Can You Still Use Them?

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

A while back, I got this question: Can we still use independent contractors for our business? This answer is certainly yes. But you wouldn’t know it from all the headlines of late. And you wouldn’t think so by the attacks on the use of independent contractors by government agencies.  Take this quote from the U.S…. Continue Reading

Can You Fire An Employee Who Has Exhausted FMLA Leave?

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

An employee of yours goes out on medical leave. Suppose that you only have to abide by the federal FMLA law.  After 12 weeks, the employee is still out. Can you simply fire the employee? Well, the U.S. Department of Labor says “yes”.  Sort of. As part of a Q&A on the subject, the DOL… Continue Reading

An Explainer Video on OWBPA-Compliant Separation Agreements

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

As I keep trying new things for the blog, today I introduce an “explainer” video.  You’ve seen them before; it’s a short movie explaining a subject. Today’s topic is one I’ve touched on from time to time — separation agreements that comply with the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act. Let me know what you think… Continue Reading

What’s Ahead in 2016 For Employment Law? Probably Not As Much As You Think

Posted in Highlight, Human Resources (HR) Compliance

Ah, predictions. Way back at the start of 2015, I made a series of predictions regarding employment law in the then-upcoming year. Not a lot of them occurred in exactly the same way I predicted. Sure, I talked about changes to the CHRO’s procedures, but my prediction regarding a Connecticut Supreme Court free speech case… Continue Reading

Watch the Employer Deductions — Except for One Special Case

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

Connecticut has pretty strict rules that employers must follow if they want to take deductions off of an employee’s salary.  Typically, an employer must seek CTDOL approval for all sorts of deductions, which I covered back in a 2012 post. But what happens if an employer makes a mistake on a paycheck and overpays an… Continue Reading

New Year, New Minimum Wage in Connecticut

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

For yet another year, Connecticut’s minimum wage is on the increase. Effective January 1, 2016, the Connecticut minimum wage will be raised to $9.60 per hour effective January 1, 2016. Although the federal minimum wage is $7.25, Connecticut employers must pay the higher rate under state law. The updated wage and hour law poster, including… Continue Reading

Tis the Season for Good Party Planning

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

It’s mostly a coincidence that my colleague, Jarad Lucan returns today with a post on a favorite topic of ours: Holiday parties.  While most of it isn’t groundbreaking (holiday parties haven’t changed all that much over the last decade), Jarad really focuses in on the key issues. So, enjoy your holiday parties over the next… Continue Reading