As another week passes by (seriously, where did January go already?), here are a few odds and ends that are worth a mention:

  • Earlier this month, new rules regarding limits on the use of mobile phones went into effet by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.   The rule covers “both, drivers of CMVs in interstate commerce, and also any drivers who operate a vehicle transporting a quantity of hazardous materials requiring placarding under 49 CFR Part 172 or any quantity of a material listed as a select agent or toxin in 42 CFR part 73.” Presumably, you should know if you’re covered but if you still have questions, here are the FAQ
  • The NLRB continues to issue memoranda addressing whether an employee’s use of social media is protected under federal labor laws.  Brian Hall, of the Employer Law Report, suggests that the NLRB “may be settling in on, dare I say, a more reasoned position when it comes to these kinds of cases.”   The takeaway? Not all employee conduct is going to qualify for protection but the rules are still being developed.
  • A while back, I noted about a little-known provision on the new health care law that mandated employers provide space in the workplace for mothers to lactate. Since that time, just 23 companies have been cited under the law, reports the Ohio Employer’s Law Blog
  • At the very end of last year, the Department of Labor released three new fact sheets offering further guidance to employers on the topic of retaliation under the FLSA and the FMLA.  Nothing altogether new, but useful nonetheless. 
  • And if you haven’t thought about wehther LinkedIn connections are trade secrets and who owns them, then this post by The Employer Handbook is worth a read too. 

Finally, if you’re looking for other law blogs to follow, you could do a lot worse than to check out this list by BlogRank of the top 50 blogs by various metrics. Yes, this blog is on there, but there are plenty of others worth exploring.