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

Tag Archives: Supreme Court

EEOC Declines a “Pregnant” Pause; New Guidance Awaits Supreme Court Decision

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

Last week, my colleagues Peter Murphy and Harrison Smith, offered to write about the latest developments in the law regarding pregnancy.  The post was scheduled to come out today, when, much to our surprise, the EEOC yesterday afternoon released long-awaited guidance on the subject. So much for that post! After a quick rewrite last night,… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Invalidates NLRB Recess Appointments; Dozens of Decisions Impacted

Posted in Labor Law & NRLB

The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 9-0 decision (with a heated split on the reasoning), ruled that the recess appointments to the NLRB made by President Obama during a three-day recess were invalid. You can download the decision here. Much of the early instant analysis has focused on the recess appointment power itself. But for… Continue Reading

Throwback Thursday: Why Your Offer Letters and Employee Handbooks Have Disclaimers #tbt

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

On Twitter and Facebook, the concept of “Throwback Thursday” (or #tbt) has become quite popular.  Typically, it’s a picture from long ago that you’ve forgotten.The theory behind why its so popular is that there is still gold to be mined out of older things. I was thinking about that concept lately when it comes to blogs and employment… Continue Reading

SOX Stake Claim in Winning … a Whistleblower Protection Case (Revisited)

Posted in Highlight, Litigation, Wage & Hour

It’s Baseball Season; a time for the Sox to come out and play. Not the Red Sox — this is, after all, a legal blog (run by a Yankees fan, no less).  No, today, we’re talking about Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Whistleblower Protection. Still with us.  My colleague, Clarisse Thomas, has taken a look back at the U.S…. Continue Reading

Donning, Doffing and “Changing Clothes”: Supreme Court Says When Employees Get Paid

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

Raise your hand if you know what “Donning and Doffing” is? To those that have raised your hand, you are most likely: a) an employment lawyer; b) a Scrabble nerd; or c) not being honest with yourself. It’s just not a phrase anyone uses in real life — like a “snood” (I’ll get to the… Continue Reading

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

No Ifs, Ands, or Buts: “But For” Standard Requires New Trial, Court Rules

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

It’s always a little tricky to determine exactly how lower courts will apply a rule of law that develops from a U.S. Supreme Court. Take the case of University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center v. Nassar, decided in June, which held that a “but for” standard (i.e., that an employer would not have taken an adverse employment… Continue Reading

The Times Says “Most Lawyers” Won’t Take Age Discrimination Cases Anymore. Really?

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

In Tuesday’s The New York Times, an article (that, as of Monday evening was one of the lead pieces on the NYTimes.com website) argues that age discrimination continues to exist in society and that it is hitting the baby boomers particularly hard.  (Indeed, the article’s tag is ”for-laid-off-older-workers-age-bias-is-pervasive”.) I do not challenge the assertion that age… Continue Reading

Conn. Supreme Court: Public Policy Against Sexual Harassment Supports (Perhaps Mandates?) Termination of Alleged Harassers

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation

It’s tough to draw lessons from appeals of arbitration decisions. Why? Because the standard to overturn arbitration cases is high and, it’s only when there are really bad facts (or, perhaps more likely, an really bad error in interpreting the law) that appellate courts consider reversing the decision. That appears to be the case in… Continue Reading

What Changes for Employers in Connecticut After Supreme Court’s Ruling…And What Doesn’t

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

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act.  The SCOTUSBlog has done an admirable job with the recaps and if you want more information about that decision, you should really go there first. But the immediate impact of the decision is that it changes all the 1000+… Continue Reading

Appearance on Where We Live

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

Early on Wednesday, shortly before the Supreme Court issued its landmark rulings in same-sex marriage cases, I had the fortunate opportunity to return to one of my favorite radio shows, Where We Live.  (You can relive my previous experiences here and here, for starters.) Along with the host, John Dankosky, we spoke at length about… Continue Reading

What Happens in Connecticut to Discrimination and Retaliation Cases After U.S. Supreme Court Case?

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Litigation

Back in 1994 (in a case Levy v. Commission on Human Rights & Opportunities, for the lawyers out there) the Appellate Court in Connecticut made a seemingly innocuous pronouncement: “We look to federal employment discrimination law for guidance in enforcing our own antidiscrimination statute.” Why? Because back then, there did not seem a reason to… Continue Reading

Offers of Judgment in FLSA Collective Actions: Another Tool for Wage & Hour Claims

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

Last week, while most of us were focused on the events in Boston, the U.S. Supreme Court came down with a notable decision last week involving a wage & hour class action (it’s actually called a “collective” action, but for the non-lawyers out there, just think of it as a class action) and what should… Continue Reading

Should You Care That Supreme Court Will Rule on Offers Of Judgment in Wage Cases?

Posted in Class Actions, Litigation, Wage & Hour

I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Not all employment law cases decided by the U.S. Supreme Court matter are of equal significance and importance to employers. What? How can that be, you say? It’s the SUPREME COURT!  Isn’t everything that they say important? Well, sort of. The truth is that sometimes… Continue Reading

Quick Hits: Holiday Parties, HIPAA and ADA, Non-Compete Agreements, “Supervisor”, Facebook

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Class Actions, Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation, Social Media

It’s been a crazy week here for reasons I hope to share in a future post. But in the meantime, the world of employment law still continues. Here are some items worth reading that I had hoped to talk about further. This brief recap will have to do for now. Want some tips on how to… Continue Reading

Breaking: Conn. Supreme Court Holds CTFMLA Applies Only If Employer Has 75+ Conn. Employees

Posted in Laws and Regulations, Litigation, Wage & Hour

The Connecticut Supreme Court this week issued its decision in Velez v. Commissioner of Labor. The decision, which has been long-awaited, holds that the Connecticut Family and Medical Leave Act applies only to employers that have 75 or more Connecticut employees. In practical terms, this means that large employers with small Connecticut locations will not… Continue Reading

BREAKING: Pharmaceutical Representatives are “Outside Salesmen” Under FLSA; Exempt from Overtime

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

The U.S. Supreme Court this morning ruled, 5-4, that pharmaceutical representatives are “outside salesmen” under the Fair Labor Standards Act.  In plain English, this now means that those representatives are now considered exempt from overtime. This decision is a big victory for pharmaceutical companies who have been facing years of class action suits (some of… Continue Reading

In Drafting Employment Law Contracts, Precision and At-Will Disclaimers Matter

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

Suppose that, after you’ve employed a worker for a year or so, she asks you for a raise. She doesn’t ask about any guarantee term for employment but you come back and give her a 36 month time frame for her salary going forward.  You draft an employee “Employment Agreement” that says ‘‘[t]his will cover the… Continue Reading

Conn. Supreme Court: Law Bars Hostile Work Environment Based on Sexual Orientation

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation

The Connecticut Supreme Court, in a decision that will be officially released on May 15, 2012, today ruled unanimously that Connecticut’s anti-discrimination laws implicitly create a claim for hostile work environment based on an employee’s sexual orientation.  The state’s anti-discrimination laws have long been interpreted to bar a hostile work environment based on gender, but… Continue Reading

Big Day for Employers at Connecticut Supreme Court

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Featured, Litigation

It’s been several years since employers had some decisions to cheer about at the Connecticut Supreme Court.  But yesterday, the court released two important decisions that will likely rank as among the most significant the court has issued in the employment context in the last decade. I represented the employer in one of those cases, which you… Continue Reading

Keep an Eye Out for Court’s Ruling on Pharmaceutical Sales Rep. Case

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

The U.S. Supreme Court yesterday heard arguments over whether pharmaceutical sales reprsentatives were properly classified as exempt (from overtime) because they fall within the “outside sales” exemption of the nation’s wage & hour laws. The plaintiffs said that they were not properly classified because, while the representatives do a lot of tasks, the one thing that… Continue Reading

Court: Regional District Employees Are “Town” Employees; Claims Barred By Workers’ Compensation Act Exclusivity

Posted in Litigation, Wage & Hour

The Connecticut Supreme Court, in a decision that will be officially released next week (but released this morning), held that an animal control officer for several towns, was an employee of each of the towns.  Because of the creation of an employer/employee relationship, her claims that she was injured on the job (she suffered a… Continue Reading

Connecticut Supreme Court Hears Arguments on Hostile Work Environment and CTFMLA Cases

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Highlight, Laws and Regulations, Litigation, Wage & Hour

It’s not very often that the Connecticut Supreme Court considers employment law issues. But today, two notable cases are being argued in front of the court. Both could have an impact on employers in the state. In Patino v. Birken Manufacturing, the court is being asked to consider whether a hostile work environment harassment claim… Continue Reading

Conn. Supreme Court: Alleged Knowing and Deliberate Discovery Misconduct Not Enough to Warrant New Trial

Posted in Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation

It’s so rare nowadays that the Connecticut Supreme Court rules on discrimination cases that, when I first took a look at its new decision in Duart v. Department of Corrections (download here) — officially released next week — I got excited.  After all, the case is based on a claims of gender, race and sexual… Continue Reading