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

Tag Archives: second circuit

State Officials Ask Supreme Court to Rule on Constitutionality of 2002 Layoffs

Posted in Class Actions, Labor Law & NRLB, Litigation

Last Friday, lawyers representing two government officials petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to hear arguments over whether former a 2002 state decision to layoff only union personnel violated those employee’s constitutional rights. Back in June 2013, you may recall that the Second Circuit ruled that such layoffs did violate the right of association.  I’ve discussed the… Continue Reading

Collective/Class Action Waivers & Arbitration Clauses: Why Employers Should Care

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

Continuing my series of posts this week on recent Second Circuit FLSA cases, today I’ll talk about class action waivers and arbitration clauses. If that last clause is just legalese to you, let me try to walk you through it and why employers should care deeply about it. As I’ve covered in prior posts, wage… Continue Reading

Claiming Overtime Pay? Some Specifics Are Required Says Second Circuit

Posted in Class Actions, Litigation, Wage & Hour

As I continue this week to recap some important FLSA decisions this summer by the Second Circuit, the next one will be important in the long run for employers. Wage and hour claims have been a thorn in employers side for a while now.  (My friend, Molly DiBianca of the always fabulous, Delaware Employment Law… Continue Reading

CEOs Beware: You’re Now in the Crosshairs of a Wage and Hour Complaint Under FLSA

Posted in Class Actions, Highlight, Litigation, Wage & Hour

As we wrap up summer and start returning from vacations, there are several important Second Circuit FLSA decisions decided over the last few weeks that employers need to be aware of.  I’ll cover them in posts over the next few days. Earlier this summer, the Second Circuit (which is the appeals court for the federal… Continue Reading

Second Circuit: Governor’s Layoffs of Only Union Personnel Subject to Strict Scrutiny

Posted in Class Actions, Labor Law & NRLB, Litigation

On Friday, the Second Circuit issued an important decision in the long-running battle between the state unions and the government about whether layoffs of only union personnel violated the First Amendment. I’ve previously discussed the background of this case (and my very early involvement in it) in various posts. The Second Circuit not only reversed the… Continue Reading

Is Being On Time an Essential Function of Job? Second Circuit Says Most Times But Not Always

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

I’m late / I’m late / For a very important date. / No time to say “Hello, Goodbye”. / I’m late, I’m late, I’m late. — White Rabbit, from “Alice in Wonderland” (1951) Let’s start with the premise, as the Second Circuit does, that “In many, if not most, employment contexts, a timely arrival is… Continue Reading

What Remedy Is Appropriate When a Jury Concludes Sexual Harassment Occurred?

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

A case out of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals (of which, Connecticut is part of) addresses an interesting question: When a jury  finds that sexual harassment has been perpetuated by a single employee, is injunctive (non-monetary) relief required to be issued by the District Court? The EEOC argued yes and argued that remedies such as… Continue Reading

Taxes are Inevitable … Even on Judgments For Front and Back Pay in Discrimination Cases

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

Everyone knows that taxes are inevitable.  Except perhaps one employee who won his Title VII case but complained that the employer shouldn’t have made withholdings for taxes when it paid out the judgment.  The Second Circuit, in a decision released right before the Labor Day weekend, said the employer did the right thing. You can read the case, Noel… Continue Reading

When a Employer’s Decisionmaker is Unavailable, What Then?

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

A new case out of the Second Circuit answers a question that has perplexed employers: How can an employer defend itself from an employment discrimination claim when the person who made the decision becomes “unavailable?”  (“Unavailable” can take many meanings such as, the witness is out of the country, but in many cases it means the witness… Continue Reading

Recipe for Success: Keep Accurate Time Records

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

As Google was quick to remind us, today would have been Julia Child’s 100th birthday today.  In cooking, lots of recipies call for seasoning with salt and pepper.  In fact, its so common, that you might overlook it. For employers, the simple ingredient to success that might be overlooked is an accurate time record. A… Continue Reading

Second Circuit Affirms a Broader Definition of “Executive” FLSA Exemption

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

There are three major “white-collar” exemptions to the federal overtime rules that are, to some employers, a bit confusing to say the least.  One of them — the “executive” exemption — is mistakenly understood to just include, well, senior executives of a company. A new case out by the Second Circuit (Ramos v. Baldor Specialty… Continue Reading

Second Circuit = The Avengers? Judges Create Alter Ego Liability

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

Alter egos are all the rage right now with The Avengers well on its way to becoming one of the most popular movies of all time. Hearing about a new case out of the Second Circuit, it would be easy to conclude the Court was getting into the superhero business with the establishment of a new theory of liability… Continue Reading

Second Circuit: No Injunction for Expired Restrictive Covenants

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

Back in June, I talked about a new district court case on restrictive covenants.  My law partner, Joshua Hawks-Ladds, follows up today with results of the appeal. For employers who have a non-compete agreement, this decision emphasizes the need to seek an injunction quickly to protect the employer’s interests. Let’s say that you, as an… Continue Reading

Second Circuit Affirms Large USERRA Judgment Against Conn. Employer

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation

Back in 2009, I reported on a large verdict in favor of a reservist who was fired after he was called to duty after the 9/11 attacks. This month, the Second Circuit affirmed the verdict — making it one of the largest verdicts upheld under USERRA (the- Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act). The… Continue Reading

BREAKING: Second Circuit Allows Black Firefighter’s Suit Against New Haven To Proceed

Posted in Class Actions, Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation

The Second Circuit today reinstated claims brought by a black firefighter against the City of New Haven alleging that he was unfairly denied promotion to the position of lieutenant because of the city’s scoring of a 2003 promotional exam.  (I covered the original lawsuit back in 2009 here.) The decision in Briscoe v. City of… Continue Reading

Employer Who Fired Returning Reservist Did Not Violate USERRA

Posted in Laws and Regulations, Litigation

USERRA (quick, name that acronym, answer down below) is a oft-misunderstood federal statute that addresses employment issues for reservists and active duty members of the armed forces. A recent Second Circuit decision (Hart v. Family Dental Group, decided May 31, 2011), arising from a federal court filing in Connecticut demonstrates the difficulties employers may have… Continue Reading

Court: Class-wide Arbitration May Be Allowed, Even if Agreement Is Silent

Posted in Class Actions, Human Resources (HR) Compliance

Earlier this month, the Second Circuit (Jock v. Sterling Jewelers, Inc.) affirmed an arbitrator’s decision, concluding that the arbitrator’s analysis should be upheld even if the District Court disagreed with the legal analysis. Such a decision is entitled to “substantial deference”. The case rests on the principle that arbitrations are not going to be going… Continue Reading

Court Approves Expedited Appeal for Decision Mandating Exotic Dancers Arbitrate

Posted in Class Actions, Litigation, Wage & Hour

Last month, I discussed a very notable decision in D’Antuono v. Service Road Corp. in which the federal court — relying in part on the Supreme Court’s decision in AT&T Mobility — ordered two exotic dancers to arbitrate their employment-related claims. A few days ago, the same district court allowed the dancers to take an… Continue Reading

Second Circuit Revisits Standards for “Working” Time vs. Off-the-Clock in Reviving Wage & Hour Class Action

Posted in Class Actions, Litigation, Wage & Hour

When does the workday begin? When does it end?  These were among the questions that the Second Circuit addressed and resolved in an important wage & hour decision last week. The case, Kuebel v. Black & Decker, can be downloaded here. The court held that an "employee’s commuting time is not compensable as part of his… Continue Reading

Back Again? After Remanding Case Once, Second Circuit This Time Finds for Employer on First Amendment Claims

Posted in Litigation

In broad terms, the First Amendment prohibits public employers from retaliating against employees who engage in "protected speech".   (Connecticut has a statute, Conn. Gen. Stat. Sec. 31-51q that purports to apply the First Amendment to private employers too.)  But proving these cases remains difficult for employees.   And even victories may later end up as defeats… Continue Reading

Quitters Rarely Win…In Constructive Discharge Claims

Posted in Litigation

While fans of the long running television reality show Survivor may suggest the timing of this post is geared to the events of last night’s episode that featured two players who quit, there are actually two recent and noteworthy cases in Connecticut that show that employees who quit their jobs rare win discrimination claims that… Continue Reading

Second Circuit Throws Out Demoted Dean’s First Amendment Claim

Posted in Litigation

The Second Circuit ruled Friday that the University of Connecticut is entitled to "qualified immunity" on a School of Engineering Dean’s claim that he was demoted in violation of his First Amendment rights to free speech.  The case has very important ramifications for public employers on how they can deal with criticism from managerial-level employees…. Continue Reading

Second Circuit: Repeated Use of “Bitch” May Be Enough to Create Hostile Work Environment

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation

If you’re an employer with an appeal to the Second Circuit, having the EEOC write a brief on behalf of the Plaintiff-employee is not one of those things that portends well for the case. So, when the Second Circuit issued its decision in Pucino v. Verizon Communications (download here), perhaps the writing was already on the… Continue Reading

Musings from the Second Circuit

Posted in Litigation

Today, I had the opportunity to argue in front of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in downtown Manhattan. (Hence the reason for the sparseness of posts lately).   Although I have been there before, it continues to rank among the most professionally rewarding experiences in my career. Every attorney who dreams of an oral… Continue Reading