First Wednesday Breakfast Briefing: New Year, New Decade: Hot-Button Employment Issues in the Financial Services Industry

The Yale Club of New York
50 Vanderbilt Avenue
NY, NY 10017
(212) 716-2100

Presented by Epstein Becker Green Attorneys:
Gretchen Harders
Jeffrey M. Landes
William J. Milani
John Houston Pope

Having weathered the bruising economic storm of 2009, many employers in the financial services sector are breathing at least a small sigh of relief. But when it comes to employment law matters, this is not the time for complacency. The economic climate remains volatile; job insecurity is still high; and both the federal and state governments continue to expand their enforcement efforts. The financial services sector is struggling with how to compensate and incentivize its employees in the context of the federal bail-out funds and the legislative focus on curbing excessive bonuses and excessive risk-taking.

Adding in no small measure to this mix of concerns, financial firms — by their nature, heavily reliant on electronic communications — must manage the vast array of risks posed by the increasingly higher-tech workplace, particularly the invasion of social networking websites.

In short, 2010 promises to keep the financial sector's labor counsel and H.R. executives as busy as ever.

Using real-world case studies, this morning briefing will provide concrete legal and practical guidance on some of the key employment issues we believe financial firms will be confronting this year, including:

Wage and Hour Class Actions and Other High-Stakes Pay Claims

  • How and why wage and hour class actions have reached "epidemic" proportions and why the financial services industry should care
  • What the Department of Labor's promise to ramp up enforcement against misclassified workers could mean for your firm
  • How to prevent misclassification of employees and avoid other wage and hour pitfalls the financial sector is vulnerable to, including the "Blackberry" overtime claim
  • Updates on recent developments under New York State Wage and Hour law, including commissions, wage deductions, and notice of pay requirements

Critical Issues for Incentive and Bonus Compensation Plans and Programs in the Financial Services Sector

  • How federal policies, stated agendas and proposed financial reform legislation will likely affect incentive and bonus compensation plans and programs in the financial services sector
  • Designing short and long term incentive compensation plans and programs
  • Objectives and considerations for equity-based compensation
  • Tax issues and penalties under Section 409A of the Internal Revenue Code
  • How to apply forfeitures and clawbacks
  • Termination of employment: the good, the bad and the ugly

Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter: The Potential Promise and Peril of Social Networking Sites and Other High-Tech Media

  • How to use new social media as an effective and cost-efficient recruitment tool while avoiding their inherent legal minefields
  • How to protect confidential and proprietary data from unauthorized disclosure by departing employees and others in the Internet age
  • The emerging "textual" harassment claim and how to minimize your risks
  • High-tech defamation: How the new social media, blogs and "rant" sites can hurt your firm's reputation and bottom line
  • Monitoring the virtual world: Developing the all-important policies that will protect your firm while respecting employees' privacy and other legal rights (Hint: The courts are not making it easy)
  • The new FINRA guidelines on social media: How the financial industry can effectively meet its unique regulatory obligations.

We hope you will join us for this timely and informative briefing.

Registration fee: $40

If you have any question about this briefing, please contact Christine Eschenauer, (212) 351-4668 or [email protected].

NOTE: Epstein Becker Green (EBG) is an approved provider of New York Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit. This seminar is approved for 2.0 hours of credit in Professional Practice, and is appropriate for both transitional and nontransitional attorneys. Please note that in order to receive full credit for attending this briefing, the registrant must be present for the entire session. Full scholarships to attend EBG Breakfast Briefings will be granted to nonprofit organizations, public sector employees and unemployed attorneys. To apply, send your request, stating the reason for your interest, along with the completed registration form. The fee for this briefing is $40.