Recent Blog Posts
- Attorney General Reverses Obama-Era Protection of Transgender Employees In an October 4, 2017 letter to all United States attorneys and heads of federal agencies, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) will no longer interpret Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”) to provide employment protections to transgender individuals. This statement reversed former Attorney General Eric Holder’s position, who previously concluded that Title VII does protect transgender individuals from employment discrimination.
Although this letter from the Attorney General is a departure... More
- Trump Administration Limits Affordable Care Act’s Contraceptive Coverage Mandate On Friday October 6, 2017, the Trump administration released two interim final rules expanding the exemptions allowed under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (the “ACA’s”) contraceptive coverage mandate. Under the ACA, employer group health plans generally are required to cover contraceptives, sterilization, and related patient education and counseling, with exemptions provided for religious houses of worship. The exemption was expanded by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as a result of the Supreme Court’s decision in... More
- Plan Sponsors: Potential Targets for IRS Compliance Examinations Our colleague Sharon L. Lippett, at Epstein Becker Green, has a post on the Financial Services Employment Law blog that will be of interest to many of our health care and life sciences employers and plan sponsors: “Plan Sponsors: Potential Targets for IRS Compliance Examinations.”
Following is an excerpt:
The IRS recently released the Tax Exempt and Government Entities FY 2018 Work Plan (the “2018 Work Plan”) which provides helpful information for sponsors of tax-qualified retirement plans about the focus of the IRS’ 2018 compliance efforts for... More
- Another 24-Hour Wage Hour Decision for the Home Health Care Industry – Employment Law This Week
Click above or watch via YouTube, Vimeo, MP4, or WMV.
Employment Law This Week (Episode 88: Week of September 25, 2017) has released bonus footage of its interview with Michael McGahan, a Member of the Firm at Epstein Becker Green.
As Mike discusses, New York home care agencies typically pay sleep-in home health aides for 13 hours per day, relying on a 2010 opinion from the state Department of Labor. Two home health attendants who claimed they did not “live in” the homes... More
- Appellate Division Second Department Declines to Defer to NYSDOL Opinion Letter and Rules That Home Healthcare Attendants May Be Entitled to Wages for Hours Worked in Excess of 13 Hours a Day In New York, State Department of Labor (“DOL”) regulations provide that the minimum wage must be paid for each hour an employee is “required to be available for work at a place prescribed by the employer.” (12 NYCRR § 142-2.1(b)) (“Wage Order”). Exception is made for a “residential employee,” defined as one who lives on the premises of the employer, during his or her sleeping hours or any time he or she is free to leave the place of employment. Id.
- Federal Laws Do Not Preempt Connecticut Law Providing Employment Protections to Medical Marijuana Users Connecticut employees using medical marijuana for certain debilitating medical conditions as allowed under Connecticut law for “qualified users” are protected under state law from being fired or refused employment based solely on their marijuana use. Employers who violate those protections risk being sued for discrimination, according to a recent federal district court decision.
In Noffsinger v. SSC Niantic Operation Company (3:16-cv-01938; D. Conn. Aug. 8, 2017), the federal district court ruled that “qualified users” are protected from criminal prosecution and are... More
- NYC OATH Finds in Favor of Medical Marijuana User As we have previously reported, there has been an uptick of new employment decisions finding in favor of registered medical marijuana users. In keeping with these decisions, an administrative law judge (“ALJ”) at New York City’s Office of Administrative Trials & Hearings (“OATH”) also issued a report and recommendation, subsequently adopted by the relevant City commissioner, to dismiss a petition against a taxi driver that would have stripped him of his driver license because of his lawful medical marijuana use.
- Managing Workforce Compliance in an Unpredictable World – Attend Our Annual Briefing (NYC, Sept. 14) When: Thursday, September 14, 2017 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Where: New York Hilton Midtown, 1335 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10019
Epstein Becker Green’s Annual Workforce Management Briefing will focus on the latest developments in labor and employment law, including:
Global Executive Compensation
Internal Cyber Threats
People Analytics in Hiring
Wage and Hour
Paid and Unpaid Leave
Trade Secret Misappropriation
We will start the day with two morning Plenary Sessions. The first session is kicked off with Philip A. Miscimarra, Chairman... More
- Second Circuit Adopts “Motivating Factor” Causation Standard for FMLA Retaliation Claims The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently clarified that the “motivating factor” standard of causation applies to Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) retaliation claims, instead of the “but for” causation standard applied in Title VII and ADEA retaliation cases. The “but for” standard is more onerous for the plaintiff, who must demonstrate that discrimination or retaliation was the determining factor for the adverse employment action, not just one reason among others. The less burdensome “motivating factor”... More
- Are Zero Tolerance Drug Testing Policies About to Go Up in Smoke? In an important new decision, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court recently held that a qualifying patient who has been terminated from employment for testing positive for marijuana as a result of her lawful medical marijuana use may state a claim of disability discrimination under that state’s anti-discrimination statute. As we blogged with respect to a after a similar decision in Rhode Island, this holding has significant implications for employers that drug test for marijuana use because 29 states plus the... More