How will the Trump administration handle discrimination cases involving transgender employees? The EEOC’s pursuit of a sex discrimination claim on behalf of Aimee Stephens, a transgender woman who was terminated by a Michigan funeral home for expressing her intention to dress in conformance with her gender identity, will be an early indicator.
Monthly Archives: March 2017
How the Trump Administration May Impact the Oversight and Enforcement of Dodd-Frank’s Whistleblower Protections
On the campaign trail, President Trump vowed to “dismantle” Dodd-Frank. Dodd-Frank was enacted in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis to curtail risky investment activities and stop financial fraud through increased oversight and regulation of the banking and securities industries. Among other things, it amended the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, Securities Exchange Act, and Commodity Exchange Act to include monetary incentives for individuals to blow the whistle on suspected financial fraud and stronger protections for whistleblowers against retaliation by their employers. President Trump has criticized Dodd-Frank, arguing that it is overbroad and inhibits economic growth. Now that he is in office, President Trump has the statute squarely in his crosshairs, and he is poised to impact its whistleblower protections on the legislative, administrative, and judicial fronts.
We’re thrilled to formally announce that we’ve welcomed a new member firm into our Network: Otto Mittag Fontane in Frankfurt Germany! This firm joins our strong group of German members to provide a full range of services within its specialized practice areas and we know they will nicely complement our selection of high-quality firms within the Network. Otto Mittag Fontane is a boutique-style firm that focuses on mergers and acquisitions, private equity, corporate finance, banking and capital markets law. For more information, you can see our full press release on PR Leap.
California Court of Appeal Requires Separate Compensation for Time Spent During Rest Periods to Hourly Employees Paid on a Commission-Only Basis
On February 28, 2017, the California Court of Appeal issued its opinion in Vaquero v. Stoneledge Furniture, LLC. The opinion provides guidance to California employers who pay their hourly employees on a commission basis but do not pay separate compensation for time spent during rest periods.
In the case, the employer kept track of hours worked and paid hourly sales associates on a commission basis where, if an employee failed to earn a minimum amount in commissions – comprising of at least $12.01 per hour in commission pay in any pay period – then the employee was paid a “draw” against future advanced commissions.
Leading business law firm, Hall & Wilcox, has expanded its Perth office with the appointment of leading employment partner Kylie Groves and team.
Hall & Wilcox opened in Perth in December 2015 with an initial focus on insurance. The new employment and workplace relations team signals the firm’s intent to expand its service offering to other commercial areas in Perth, as part of its national growth strategy.
Featured on Employment Law This Week: The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit backs the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in an outsourcing dispute.
The NLRB found that a management company violated the National Labor Relations Act when it outsourced the cleaning staff of a hotel that it managed. The NLRB found evidence that the outsourcing decision was related to the worker’s interest in union representation. The NLRB rejected the company’s argument that the decision was due to declining guest satisfaction, concluding that the decision was at least, in part, motivated by anti-union animus. The Fifth Circuit has now rejected an appeal by the company, noting that the court was obligated to pay “special deference” to the NLRB’s credibility findings in cases with conflicting evidence, like this one.
The Department of Labor (“DOL”) has issued a proposed rule (the “Proposed Rule”) that would delay for 60 days (the “60-Day Delay”) the April 10, 2017 applicability date of the DOL’s new fiduciary rule (the “Fiduciary Rule”). Given the potential change in the applicability date, financial services institutions will need to determine if they will continue their work toward implementation of the Fiduciary Rule or if they will delay their efforts.
The Missouri Supreme Court has overturned a lower court’s ruling that St. Louis’ minimum wage ordinance is invalid, finding that the ordinance is not preempted by the state law.
St. Louis City’s Ordinance 70078 (“the Ordinance”) provides for a series of increases to the minimum wage for employees working within the boundaries of St. Louis. The plaintiffs argued that Ordinance 70078 was preempted by the state minimum wage law. The plaintiffs contended that state law affirmatively authorized employers to pay as little as $7.65 per hour, the state minimum wage rate.
Changes to NLRB Election Rules and Employee Handbook and Email Standards Are Likely Under Miscimarra
Our colleague Steven M. Swirsky, a Member of the Firm at Epstein Becker Green, has a post on the Management Memo blog that will be of interest to many of our readers in the retail industry: “NLRB Acting Chair Dissents Point to Likely Changes to Board Election Rules and Employee Handbook and Email Standards.”
Following is an excerpt:
NLRB Acting Chair Philip Miscimarra has given the clearest indication to date of what steps a new Republican majority is likely to take to reverse key elements of the Labor Board’s hallmark actions of the Obama administration once President Trump nominates candidates for the Board’s two open seats and the Senate confirms. In each of these cases, Miscimarra highlighted his earlier opposition to the majority’s changes in long standing precedents and practices. …
We’re bringing you another rainmaking recommendation from trainer and coach, Jaimie Field, today, and this one should get you up and motivated to, as the title suggests, DO SOMETHING! In her post, you’ll see that Jaimie mentions a gift for subscribers, which is referenced also at the end of the post. To become a subscriber, please send an email directly to Jaimie and put “Rainmaking Recommendations” in the subject line.