On Oct. 26, 2020, the IRS announced cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for pension plans and other retirement-related items for the 2021 Tax Year. Changes to the limits are based upon the Social Security cost-of-living increases. Unlike last year, most of the applicable pension and retirement limitations will stay the same for the 2021 Tax Year.
Monthly Archives: October 2020
As featured in #WorkforceWednesday: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention broadened its definition of “close contact.” Now, spending a total of 15 minutes within six feet of an infected individual over a 24-hour period counts as close contact. Previously, it was an exposure period of 15 consecutive minutes. Attorney Denise Dadika explains what this change means for employers.
Rule 9: Don’t Discriminate, Don’t Retaliate, and, If Plausible, Accommodate – Return to Work in the Time of COVID-19
Part 9 of a series featuring our video Rules of the Road: Return to Work in the Time of COVID-19.
If the Rules of the Road: Return to Work in the Time of COVID-19 series has given you any takeaways, it should be that it pays to be prepared, to be safe, and to anticipate workplace issues before they arise. This means taking stock of what has happened in the past year and what challenges lie ahead. There is almost nothing the pandemic has not affected in our lives, or in business and the workplace and the challenges have been daunting. Challenges have included, coping with illness, the stressors of new work arraignments, the impact of physical distancing, adjusting to caregiving responsibilities at home, and simply grappling with the unknowns of the pandemic. In short, it’s been a challenging year. As we turn the corner into 2021, it’s apparent that employers will continue to need to manage their workforces with an understanding of the complexities that the pandemic has thrust upon employees’ lives. The following short statements serve as a quick reminder of what employers should and should not do when returning employees safely to the workplace. If the statements seem familiar (dare we say intuitive), it’s because they are. You have seen them before. These maxims apply with equal force to the workplace today as they did before the pandemic. With all the preoccupying challenges presented by the pandemic, however, we offer these important reminders.
As the pandemic continues into 2021, many employers are contending with their workers’ significantly increased caregiving responsibilities. Parents – many without viable day care or other childcare options – must try to balance work with the challenges of caring for their children and overseeing their education (and entertainment). Other employees find themselves at the forefront of caregiving for sick family members and for family members at high risk for serious illness, if they become infected by COVID-19.
On Oct. 26, 2020, the IRS announced cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for pension plans and other retirement-related items for the 2021 Tax Year. Changes to the limits are based upon the Social Security cost-of-living increases. Unlike last year, most of the applicable pension and retirement limitations will stay the same for the 2021 Tax Year. Read more…
Michigan Passes COVID-19 Laws Including a Liability Shield for Employers and Enhanced Worker Protections
October has brought a weekly flurry of changes to Michigan’s COVID-19 legal landscape.  On Thursday October 22, 2020, Governor Whitmer added to this recent activity by signing three bills into law that provide employers with significant liability protection and employees with job protections related to COVID-19.
Employer Protections: Liability Shield
Titled the “COVID-19 Response and Reopening Liability Assurance Act,” HB 6030 provides employers with immunity from liability for a “COVID-19 claim” as long as the employer acted in compliance with all federal, state and local statutes, rules, regulations, executive orders, and agency orders related to COVID-19. A “COVID-19 claim” is defined to include a tort claim or tort cause of action for damages, losses, indemnification, or other relief arising out of or in any way related to exposure or potential exposure to COVID-19 or to conduct intended to reduce the transmission of COVID-19. In addition, HB 6031  amends the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Act and affords liability protection to employers for an employee’s exposure to COVID-19, as long as the employer operated in compliance all federal, state and local statutes, rules, regulations, executive orders, and agency orders related to COVID-19.
Privacy and Security Considerations for Employers Grappling with Introducing Social Distancing and Contact Tracing Technologies in the Workplace
As employers continue their efforts to safely bring employees back to the workplace, many have moved beyond initial pre-entry wellness checks or questionnaires and are considering technology solutions that monitor social distancing and conduct contact tracing in real-time. Along with introducing these enhanced capabilities, the question of the privacy and security of employee personally identifiable information (“PII”) and protected health information (“PHI”) continues to loom.
The Supreme Court’s Adjudication on Whether a Post-grant Amendment of a Granted Patent Constitutes an Amendment of the Litigation Claim
When granted with a patent right, the patentee may file a request for amending the description, claim(s) or drawing(s) of the granted patent. Hence, once an alleged infringer has presented prior evidence sufficient to establish that the patent at issue lacks patentability in a patent infringement litigation case, the patentee is likely to file post-grant amendment requests with the Taiwan Intellectual Property Office during the litigation proceedings in order to overcome the defects in the validity of the patent at issue. At this point, pursuant to Article 32 of the Intellectual Property Case Adjudication Rules, “trial and adjudication of the principal case may directly proceed if the amendment application obviously shall not be granted or if the amended scope of claim(s), once approved, does not constitute an infringement of right.”
In terms of relationship between patent protections and regulatory approvals for pharmaceutical products, the patent-linkage system, the patent extension rule, and the Bolar exception form a complete suite of rules balancing the interest between innovative pharmaceutical companies and generic pharmaceutical companies. The Bolar exception was introduced into the PRC Patent Law during the amendment in 2008. However, the patent-linkage system and the patent extension have not been included in the legislative pipeline until recently. Read more…
October 26, 2020 — Concerned with the development of future generations of lawyers, RSS offers students of the Faculty of Law of the University of Montréal an award for excellence in Insurance Law Course.
RSS is pleased to present the 2019–2020 award to Ms. Alexia Mooijekind.