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

Category Archives: Wage & Hour

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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

Changes at the CHRO and Connecticut DOL

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

The state agencies that employers have to deal with the most on employment law issues made two announcements this week regarding their leadership ranks. The Commission on Human Rights & Opportunities has announced that Michele Mount has been named the Chief Human Rights Referee. Ms. Mount has been a Human Rights referee for the CHRO… 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

Employees Participating in Court Proceedings May Have Protection

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

My colleague, Jarad Lucan (who just won a New Leader of the Law award from the Connecticut Law Tribune!) returns today with a post about the protections employees who testify in court may have.  Most employers (at least those employers that read this blog on a regular basis) know that it is illegal to subject… Continue Reading

USDOL Final Revisions to White Collar Exemptions Coming in 2016

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

Over the next few days, I hope to provide a few updates from attending last week’s ABA Labor & Employment Law Annual Conference in Philadelphia.  There were many good, substantive programs there and lots to be gleaned for employers. One of the sessions focused on the proposed revisions to the white collar overtime exemptions that… Continue Reading

Drafting Employment Agreements – What Can We Learn from Ralph Lauren

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

One of the little facts that’s not widely known is that the SEC typically publishes all sorts of executive employment agreements for publicly-traded companies.  They’re ready and available for download. Why might the average person do that? Well, for one, these agreements can sometimes contain the latest and greatest “crowd-sourced” language for executive agreements.  For… Continue Reading

When Parent Has Been Unlawfully Fired, Can Kids Sue Employer? Court Overrules Precedent

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

The Connecticut Law Tribune reported earlier this month on a new Connecticut Supreme Court case that, for the first time, allowed claims brought by kids to proceed based on injuries suffered by their parents. Plaintiffs’ lawyers have a new weapon in their arsenal. The state Supreme Court, in a split decision, has ruled that Connecticut… Continue Reading

Despite Ruling, Free Speech Statute Continues To Offers Some Defenses

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

In two prior posts this week here and here, I talked about the significance of a new Connecticut Supreme Court case that has expanded the free speech rights of employees in the workplace. For more on the case itself, check out these articles from the Hartford Courant and the Connecticut Law Tribune But do employers… Continue Reading

Expanding Employee Free Speech Rights: How Bad Is the Court’s Decision for Employers?

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

In yesterday’s post, I alerted you to a new Connecticut Supreme Court decision (Trusz v. UBS Realty Investors, LLC) that expanded employee free speech rights under the Connecticut Constitution. But I wanted some time to think about the answer to the following question: How much did the court expand it? And to that question, there… Continue Reading

BREAKING: Connecticut Supreme Court Expands Employee Free Speech Claims

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

In an unanimous decision that was released late this morning, the Connecticut Supreme Court ruled the limits to free speech limits established by the U.S. Supreme Court in its Garcetti decision — namely that speech pursuant to an employee’s official job duties was not protected — did not apply to claims brought under the Connecticut… Continue Reading

BREAKING: Connecticut Department of Labor Commissioner to Retire At End of Year

Posted in Labor Law & NLRB, Legislative Developments, Wage & Hour

Sharon Palmer, the Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Labor, will retire at the end of this year, news that was first reported by the CT Mirror website. According to CT Mirror: In an interview, she described her decision to retire as driven by age and circumstance, not politics or a consequence of overseeing the… Continue Reading

Lucky You: Workplace Gambling Webinar Set for October 20th

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

My New York Football Giants are 0-2 so far this year.  It’s been ugly. But all is not lost for me. Why? My fantasy football team — the Hartford Hotspurs (with a wink to my favorite soccer team, the Tottenham Hotspurs) — is 2-0 so far. Now, you may be wondering what this has to… Continue Reading

After Hours iPhone and Android Use By Employees Raises Wage/Hour Concerns (Again!)

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

So, you remember February 2009, right? We were all aflutter over Liam Neeson in Taken (ok, I still haven’t seen it).  And we were listening to “My Life Would Suck Without You” by Kelly Clarkson (still a good song.) And I had a Blackberry Bold and loved it. (I know; even lawyers can plead temporary… Continue Reading

Trivia Time for HR Professionals – Six Questions of the Day

Posted in CHRO & EEOC, Featured, Highlight, Manager & HR Pro’s Resource Center, Wage & Hour

I recently was invited the join the “Learned League”, which has been described by the Washington Post as the “coolest, weirdest Internet community you’ll never be able to join.” Needless to say, now that I’m participating in it, I’m wondering if I’m either cool or weird or both. The league is a hodge-podge of various… Continue Reading

The Real Battle over Independent Contractors and the ABC Test In Connecticut

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

You’ve no doubt heard lots about how the U.S. Department of Labor is cracking down on independent contractors.  I’ve recapped it before and my former colleague, Jonathan Orleans, has a new post regarding Uber & electricians. But in my view, there is a larger, more important battle now being fought in Connecticut and you may… Continue Reading

A Vacation Perspective: The “Waterfall” Noise of Employment Law

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

The first day back from vacation is always fun. And by fun, I mean “not fun AT ALL.” There’s the e-mails. And the voicemails. And the things that you should’ve gotten done before vacation that you really honestly tried to do, but well, you just couldn’t. And then there’s the news and other “information” that… Continue Reading

No Vacation for Employment Law: New “Interpretation” for Independent Contractors Issued by USDOL

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

Whatever happened to summer vacation? You remember, that downtime, when nothing much happened? First, there were new proposed OT rules. Then, word came out EARLY (I got an alert at 6a!) today that the U.S. Department of Labor issued new “guidance” that will try to limit the misclassification of employees as indpendent contractors. The goal… Continue Reading

Unemployment Taxes: CTDOL Argues There’s More to the Story

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

After my post last week, I received a thoughtful response from the Connecticut Department of Labor that is worth consideration. Much of it has already been transmitted in a column by Dan Haar in the Courant, but I think in the interests in fairness, it’s worth reprising here. In it, the CTDOL suggests that it… Continue Reading

DOL’s Internship Test Rejected by Second Circuit Creating Conflict with New Connecticut Law

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

Did you enjoy the fireworks last week? I’m not talking about the real Independence Day fireworks; rather, it’s a new Second Circuit decision that should have employment lawyers popping this morning. For a while, we’ve been talking about interns.  Indeed, back in 2013, I talked about how a wage/hour case involving interns on the movie… Continue Reading

Employers to Pay More in Federal Unemployment Taxes

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

It appears that for the second year in a row, Connecticut employers will not be able to take advantage of a cost-saving opportunity as a result of inaction by the Connecticut Department of Labor. In two letters to the Connecticut Department of Labor by the CBIA and the Republican leadership, the details of the state’s… Continue Reading

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