Topic: Employment

Limits to Enforcement of Non-Compete Agreements

Business clients often ask us whether their non-compete agreements with key employees will actually be enforced by the courts. A recent decision from the Connecticut Superior Court illustrates the limits to enforcing these agreements. Typical of non-compete enforcement situations, the plaintiff company learned that an executive employee who had just resigned had been hired by…

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The Aftermath: Workplace-Related Developments From The 2018 Regular Session of The Connecticut General Assembly Workplace

The 2018 Regular Session of the Connecticut General Assembly concluded on May 9, 2018. Numerous bills that were of significant interest (e.g., paid family and medical leave, other changes to the state’s FMLA, changes in the state’s paid sick leave act, measures addressing sexual harassment, increases in the state’s minimum wage) did not pass. From a…

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What to Include– and What Not to Include– in an Offer Letter

An offer letter is a formal offer of employment to a job applicant. Employers also use offer letters to summarize the basic terms of employment after an applicant has accepted an oral job offer. What to Include in an Offer Letter—the Basics Written offer letters are not required in Connecticut, but employers in the state…

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New York State Passes New Legislation In Response To #MeToo Movement

New York State, and New York City, stepped up this legislative season and passed several new laws in response to #MeToo, aimed at ferreting out and preventing workplace harassment. Here is what employers should know: “Mandatory arbitration clauses” are now prohibited for sex harassment claims in New York.  These provisions require employees to take their…

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Fiduciary Rule Update – SEC to Consider Broker Dealer and Investment Adviser Standards

The SEC has announced it will hold a public meeting on Wednesday, April 18 at 3:30 p.m. to discuss possible standards for broker-dealers and investment advisers when dealing with retail investors (e.g., small retirement plans, their participants, and IRA owners), signaling that it will consider a new fiduciary standard of conduct and related rules.  At…

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Are Discretionary Bonuses Really Discretionary?

For some years, employment law in Connecticut has seemed to make a clear distinction between bonus plans that are discretionary, and plans that guaranteed payment of a bonus if specified performance criteria were met. In a pair of decisions interpreting Connecticut’s wage payment statutes (Connecticut General Statutes sec. 31-68 and 31-72), the Supreme Court of…

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NLRB SAYS GOOGLE’S FIRING OF DIVERSITY MEMO AUTHOR JAMES DAMORE WAS LEGAL

In a recently released and lightly redacted memo, a staff attorney for the U.S. National Labor Relations Board concluded that Google’s firing of James Damore was legal. Last year, Damore, a Harvard graduate and a little-known engineer at Google, ignited a firestorm when he published a memo in which he criticized Google’s diversity policies and…

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New US DOL Pilot Program Aims to Resolve FLSA Disputes More Quickly

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has announced a new nationwide pilot program to facilitate resolution of potential overtime and minimum wage violations under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). When launched, the Payroll Audit Independent Determination (PAID) program will allow employers to conduct self-audits of their compensation practices for potential non-compliance and resolve…

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Is Predictive Scheduling Coming To Connecticut?

In certain businesses where work volume cannot be known in advance, such as outdoor maintenance work that is dependent on the weather and delivery of materials, or service work that is dependent on the volume of customers, employers try to keep labor costs under control by using “call-in” or “just-in-time” scheduling; i.e., having employees call…

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March is Women’s History Month: A Look at 3 Laws Protecting the Rights of Women in the Workplace

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, nearly half of U.S. workers are women. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits sex discrimination in all aspects of employment, was enacted over 50 years ago, but women still face challenges in the workplace. As March is Women’s History Month, now is a…

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Latest Developments from the Connecticut General Assembly: March 8th Public Hearing

On Thursday, March 8, 2018, the General Assembly’s Labor and Public Employees Committee will conduct a public hearing on the following proposed bills, many of which concern “wage and hour” and leave issues: 1. H.B. No. 5387 AN ACT CONCERNING PAID FAMILY MEDICAL LEAVE. This bill would provide paid family and medical leave benefits to eligible…

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Second Circuit Rules That Title VII Prohibits Discrimination On The Basis Of Sexual Orientation

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals (the federal appellate court covering Connecticut, New York and Vermont), on Monday, February 26, 2018, issued a decision overturning its prior rulings and holding definitively that Title VII’s ban on “discrimination on the basis of sex” prohibits discrimination because of an employee’s sexual orientation. Connecticut state law has since…

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Is a Broken Arm a Disability?

In Connecticut, employees with disabilities are protected from discrimination by both the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) and by the Connecticut Fair Employment Practices Act (“CFEPA”). Some disabilities are obvious and permanent; for instance, no one would dispute that an amputated limb qualified as a disability under the law. However, employers are sometimes faced…

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