Last year, a new “speedy” election rule was put in place by the NLRB to shorten the length of time between a petition for union representation and the vote to approve or disapprove of the union.  This new rule caused a lot of concern for employers, and many expected a big uptick in the number of elections and union victories. 


In late March, four players from the U.S. women’s national soccer team filed a discrimination claim with the EEOC against the U.S. Soccer Federation, claiming that they make far more money for the organization than the men’s team but they are paid substantially less.  The complaint states that the duties of members on each team are virtually the same, yet the women are paid between 38% and 72% less than the men for non-tournament matches.


Our attorneys have presented on a myriad of labor and employment topics, including those listed below.  We would be happy to speak to your leadership group, HR team and/or employees about these and other areas of frequent concern for our clients.  Please contact Paul Keneally, Jennifer Shoemaker or Alina Nadir to schedule a presentation.


The Department of Labor has finalized a new regulation under the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act that requires employers and legal consultants to report to the Department any type of arrangement that may persuade employees on whether or not to organize or collectively bargain.  Previously, the rule did not require employers to report hiring attorneys or consultants for “advice,” meaning as long as the attorneys or consultants had no direct contact with employees, the employer did not have to disclose that it obtained such advice. 


Word from the 2016 Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) National Legislative Conference this week is that the new federal Department of Labor regulations (Part 541) regarding overtime will be out sooner than expected, in the latter part of April.  In addition to the well-publicized increase in the minimum salary that will need to be paid to make an employee exempt from overtime pay (over $50,000 per year), there are expected to be significant changes in the duties requirements for each exempt status category. 


The Internal Revenue‎ Service (IRS) has issued an Alert regarding a new phishing spoofing scheme that infiltrates company email systems. Human resources, payroll or other relevant employees receive an email purporting to be from the Company CEO or other senior official requesting an email response with W-2 information, names, social security numbers, dates of birth, addresses, salary and/or other personal information in order for the phishers/spoofers to steal their identity.


The NLRB has issued recent decisions regarding two franchisees and the agreements they make employees sign upon hire. 

An Applebee’s franchisee had employees sign an employee dispute resolution agreement which the NRLB found wrongly prevented employees from filing class or collective actions in court or in an arbitration proceeding.  The franchise owner was ordered to rewrite the arbitration agreement to remove any such language. 


Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued its Fiscal Year 2015 Enforcement and Litigation Data.  In 2015, individuals filed over 89,000 employment discrimination charges with the Commission.  This is an astonishing number and should cause employers to take note.  Indeed, for the first time since 2011, the number of charges filed with the EEOC is on the rise.  Since the all-time high of 99,947 charges filed in 2011 until last year, the number had been steadily declining. 


Beginning in September 2017, employers with more than 100 employees will have to include information about pay rates categorized by gender, race and ethnicity.  The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) have teamed up on the proposal, timed on the seventh anniversary of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which extended the statute of limitations for filing equal pay cases.


Last week Governor Cuomo announced the implementation of new regulations to protect New York’s transgendered citizens.  The new regulations prohibit harassment and discrimination based on an individual’s gender identity, transgender status, or gender dysphoria.