New York + New Year = New Laws: Key Legal Developments Affecting Employers in the Empire State

The Yale Club of New York50 Vanderbilt Avenue
New York, NY 10017

Presented by Epstein Becker Green Attorneys:
Jeffrey M. Landes
William J. Milani
Susan Gross Sholinsky
Dean L. Silverberg

Labor and employment law is constantly changing, particularly at the state and local levels, and especially in New York. Last year was an exceptionally busy year for legal developments affecting employers that operate in New York. Now that we've ushered in 2011, employers need to understand and comply with an array of new and significant changes in state and city workplace laws and regulations, along with important court rulings.

Please join us as we kick off our first monthly Wednesday Breakfast Briefing series with a "nuts and bolts" session offering practical guidance on complying with employers' newest obligations under New York State and City labor and employment laws, including:

Wage and Hour Developments:

  • The Wage Theft Prevention Act, which becomes effective on April 12, 2011, and, among other things, mandates additional written notice of wage rates and pay days, prohibits retaliation, and adds steeper penalties for noncompliance with the state's labor laws, including criminal penalties
  • The New York State Department of Labor's ("NYSDOL's") sweeping new minimum wage order for restaurant and hospitality establishments, which, among other things, increases the minimum direct wage required to be paid tipped hospitality industry employees and establishes overtime calculations for such employees, permits mandatory tip pooling and deduction of credit card fees from tips, and imposes strict recordkeeping requirements
  • The Domestic Workers' Bill of Rights Law, which specifically protects domestic workers from unwelcome harassment in a household, and requires, among other things, minimum wage and overtime payments for domestic workers (this new law may have implications for certain home health care employers)
  • The New York State Construction Industry Fair Play Act, which creates a rebuttable presumption that all construction workers are employees; we also will update you on the ongoing, aggressive enforcement efforts of the New York State Joint Enforcement Task Force on Employee Misclassification
  • The latest on the NYSDOL's Guidelines, Instructions and Model Notices of Pay Rates and Pay Days and the NYSDOL's reversal on permissible paycheck deductions
  • The latest from the New York courts on the post-termination payment of commissions

Anti-Discrimination and Other Workplace Law Developments:

  • The Funeral Leave Benefits for Same-Sex Couples Act, which entitles employees who are part of a same-sex couple to the same funeral or bereavement leave granted to other employees
  • The New York Court of Appeals' ruling upholding strict liability for New York City employers whose supervisors or managers violate the city's Human Rights Law
  • The NYSDOL's revisions to the New York State WARN Act regulations
  • The New York Court of Appeals' decision announcing a new standard for determining the enforceability of a fee-splitting or cost-sharing provision in an arbitration agreement.

Epstein Becker Green 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 transitional and appropriate for both newly admitted and experienced attorneys.

Epstein Becker Green is an approved service provider for New Jersey CLE. This program has been approved by the Board on Continuing Legal Education of the Supreme Court of New Jersey for 2 hours of total CLE credit.