On April 14, 2015 the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) new union election rules (Election Rules) went into effect. As discussed in a prior GT Alert, the NLRB adopted the new rules by a 3-2 vote with the two Republican NLRB members dissenting. As outlined below, the Election Rules make significant changes to the Board’s procedures for processing election petitions, holding hearings, and conducting secret-ballot elections. Most significantly, the Election Rules pave the way for union elections to be held in as few as 14–21 days after the filing of a union petition, a dramatic decrease from the current median time of 38 days.
On Feb. 12, 2015, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter signed into law a new chapter in the Philadelphia Code, “Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces,” that requires employers with 10 or more employees in Philadelphia to provide paid sick time to certain workers. The ordinance takes effect on or about May 13, 2015. It is recommended that affected employers review their paid leave policies and procedures in light of the new law to assess what changes, if any, to implement before the May 2015 effective date.
Beginning April 7, 2015, Massachusetts employers with six or more employees will be required to provide the same benefits and protections afforded by the Massachusetts Maternity Leave Act to both male and female employees, including eight weeks of job-protected leave for adoption or birth of a child. The authors of this Client Alert discuss the Parental Leave Act in detail and suggest actions Massachusetts employers should take before April to ensure that their policies and practices are compliant with the new law.
Join Greenberg Traurig’s Labor & Employment Practice for a webinar discussion of how to efficiently assess and mitigate risk in the employment space in order to reduce long-term legal spending. Our attorneys will provide a high-level overview of recent federal and state developments that have increased risk exposure.
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
12:00 p.m. — 1:30 p.m. EST
Discussion Topics Include:
- The intersection of the ACA and FLSA
- Misclassification of workers, whether to pay interns, and reducing off-the-clock work
- BYOD policies
- Paid sick leave laws and predictable work schedules
- EEOC priorities: corporate wellness programs, lactation breaks and trends in pregnancy discrimination, LGBT/gender identity issues, and criminal background checks
- Drug and alcohol testing
- Best practices for drafting employee handbooks
1.5 General/Professional Practice hour pending approval in: AZ, CA, CO, FL, GA, IL, NJ, NY, NV, TX & VA. Greenberg Traurig has been certified by the New York State CLE Board as an Accredited Provider of CLE in the State of NY (November 11, 2013 – November 10, 2016). This program is approved for experienced attorneys only.
Approved for 1.50 (HR (General)) recertification credit hours toward PHR, SPHR and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute.
We previously wrote a Client Alert about the Department of Labor’s (DOL) new regulations that were poised to eliminate the exemption from the Fair Labor Standards Act’s (FLSA) minimum wage and overtime provisions for certain home-health care workers. As expected, the new regulations were met with significant pushback from certain home care employers and industry associations, including a federal lawsuit led by the Home Care Association of America challenging the legality of the regulations [Home Care Association of America v. Weil, Case No. 14-cv-0967 (D.D.C.)]. That lawsuit was effectively decided last week when the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued its second opinion, ruling against the DOL and vacating the portions of the new regulations that would have made more than 90 percent of home care workers eligible for overtime pay.
Written by Michael G. Murphy, P.E. Esq.
Two changes to the OSHA Standard for Recording and Reporting Occupational Injuries and Illnesses went into effect Jan. 1, 2015. First, businesses that were previously exempt from the recording requirements now must record occupational injuries and illnesses shortly after they happen. Second, OSHA has added to the type of incidents that must be reported to OSHA within eight hours to include the hospitalization of one or more employees (it was three employees) and a new requirement to report any amputation or loss of an eye. This GT Alert provides further detail on the changes and includes a list of industries, by NAICS code, that remain partially exempt from the recording requirement.
Written by James M. Nelson
In the Mendiola v. CPS Security Solutions, Inc. decision last week, the California Supreme Court held that employees are entitled to pay not only for on-call time, but also for time spent sleeping during on-call shifts. The author of this GT Alert summarizes the case and notes that unaddressed items, like the impact of the ruling on rest and meal period requirements and daily overtime, will be issues to watch for in the new year.
Written by Howard L. Mocerf
This week the National Labor Relations Board adopted new union election rules by a 3-2 vote. Characterized by dissenting Board members as “The Mount Everest of Regulations,” the new rules will result in quicker elections and trap unwary employers. The author of this GT Alert outlines the new rules, which will take effect April 14, 2015, and suggests that employers take proactive measures, including contacting experienced management labor counsel as soon as possible if they are served with a petition for an NLRB election.
Last week the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) reversed the Register Guard decision and declared that employees who have access to a company email system now have the right to use that system, on non-working time, to voice their disagreement with their working conditions to co-workers and outsiders. The majority explained that email communications have become the primary means for discussion in the workplace and that a physically disconnected workforce depends on emails for interaction with co-workers, as well as with third parties. As a result of the NLRB’s opinion in Purple Communications, employers should begin reviewing their email policies because outright bans on non-work related use of the company’s email system will be subject to scrutiny by the NLRB.
Written by Howard L. Mocerf
Three new employment laws will take effect for Illinois employers beginning Jan. 1, 2015: the “Ban the Box” law prohibiting employers from including on job applications inquiries into whether an applicant has ever been convicted of a crime; the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) that imposes new requirements on employers for the treatment of pregnant employees and applicants; and amendments to the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act (IWPCA) that permit employers to pay employees using payroll debit cards, but with strict requirements on their use. The author of this GT Alert discusses the details of PWFA and IWPCA, and advises Illinois employers to review their employment policies and procedures as necessary.