Employment Law

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Medical Marijuana and Employer Rights in NY

Can I fire an employee for using medical marijuana?

New York passed the Compassionate Care Act in 2014, making it legal for patients who are seriously ill to use marijuana pursuant to a doctor’s orders.  Under the law, only those with certain approved conditions, like cancer or Parkinson’s disease, can legally use medical marijuana.  Passage of the Compassionate Care Act made New York the 23 state in the U.S. to allow patients to use medical marijuana.
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Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Getting Fired for a Medical Condition

Is it illegal for my employer to fire me because I have a medical condition?

A New York woman has filed suit against the Staten Island University Hospital after she was allegedly fired for her apnea medical condition.  The plaintiff worked as an EMT dispatcher at the hospital and fell asleep twice at work.  She was diagnosed with severe sleep apnea syndrome.  The terminated employee now urges she was wrongfully terminated and is seeking $10 million in back and front pay as well as her job back.  As this lawsuit continues to wind its way through the legal system, it raises an important issue for many employees: can you be fired for a medical condition?

Read more . . .

Monday, December 11, 2017

New Jersey Lawmaker Vows to Crackdown on Non-Compete Clauses

How can I ensure my company’s non-compete agreement is enforceable?

In recent years, non-competition agreements have been met with some controversy.  In the eyes of many, these agreements infringe on the free market.  However, for employers, non-competition agreements are a vital component to protecting confidential information.  In many states, laws and court rulings have limited the enforceability of

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Saturday, November 11, 2017

Accommodations for Pregnant Employees

What accommodations does my employer need to make for my pregnancy?

Pregnancy is a wonderful period of time in your life, but it is not without its challenges.  Pregnancy can impact your ability to perform work duties.  The good news for pregnant employees is that you are entitled to some protections under federal and state law.  Even with these protections in place, however, many pregnant employees find themselves being treated differently due to their medical condition.  Our

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Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Religious Accommodations and Employee Dress Codes

Is my employer required to make exceptions to the dress code due to my religion?

A Mississippi restaurant chain is facing a lawsuit from a server who alleges the chain failed to accommodate her religious requests.  Georgia Blue LLC hired Kaetoya Watkins, a devout Apostolic Pentecostal Christian, to work as a waitress in 2015.  After receiving the job, Watkins learned that the restaurant required servers to wear blue jeans.  Watkins is only permitted to wear skirts or dresses per her religion.  When informed of this fact, the restaurant refused to accommodate her religious needs and rescinded its job offer.

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Friday, September 22, 2017

What Every NYC Employee Handbook Should Include

Why is it important to have an employee handbook?

Employee handbooks are not required under New York law, but having a comprehensive employee handbook is essential to the smooth operation of your business.  Employee handbooks define the parameters of your employer-employee relationship.  Laying out the basic rules and guidelines for employment will help to minimize the potential for future employment conflicts.

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Friday, April 21, 2017

NYC Bill To Ban Employers from Asking Potential Employees About Salary History

What positive effect could banning employer inquiries as to salary histories have on employees citywide?

A New York City bill has proposed preventing private employers in the city from questioning employees about their salary histories.  The bill, number 1253, was approved by the New York City Council on April 5.  It now awaits approval by Mayor Bill de Blasio.  Several other states and cities have taken similar measures to prohibit employers from inquiring about a job applicant’s previous salary.  Our Read more . . .

Monday, March 20, 2017

Major Jewelry Conglomerate Faces Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

What should I do if I am being sexually harassed at work?

Hundreds of former employees have filed claims of sexual harassment and gender discrimination against Sterling Jewelers, the owner of Jared the Galleria of Jewelry and Kay Jewelers.  Female employees claim the work environment in these mega jewelry stores encouraged sexual misconduct, such as groping and sexual favors in exchange for promotions.  The class action lawsuit was first filed in 2008, but the case remains unresolved.
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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

For Your Own Sake Don’t Do THIS to Your Employees

Dumb, dumb, dumb case from Idaho, reversed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.  You can find the case here:
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Wednesday, December 14, 2016

New Overtime Rule On Hold - Employers in Limbo

What is the status of the overtime rule for white collar employees?

In May, the Labor Department announced significant changes to the white collar exemptions to the overtime rule under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) for executive, professional, administrative and highly compensated employees. Now that a federal judge has blocked the rule, however, employers have been left in limbo.

The rule was contested by a number of states and business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Read more . . .

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

EEOC Issues New Retaliation Guidelines

Can I be fired for complaining about discrimination or harassment on the job?

Back in March we reported that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission proposed new guidance on employment retaliation. The EEOC published its final rule in September, owing to the fact that retaliation has become the most common type of claim filed with the agency. In fact, 45 percent of all charges filed last year were related to retaliation.

Read more . . .

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