Legal Updates

The Changing Numbers of Women on Wall Street, in the Workforce, and in Boardrooms

The New York Times recently published a few intriguing articles about women that I wanted to share with you.

Women are working in the financial industry in fewer numbers these days, despite more than 20 years of increased hiring and promoting, according to the article “Where Are the Women on Wall Street?” What is responsible for this decline? As The Times notes, fewer female graduates are seeking careers in the financial industry and women are abandoning the industry faster than men. And when women are laid off from a financial job, it’s harder for them to return to the industry because they face an environment that’s more hostile to women than men. While this is disappointing news, The Times adds, on a positive note, that women continue to maintain “a strong presence in some areas in finance, including wealth management.”

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Update: Massachusetts Data Privacy Rules

As we discussed in our January 22, 2010, client alert Massachusetts Data-Protection Regulations To Have National Impact (click here), the Commonwealth of Massachusetts will begin to enforce new …

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Immigration Alert: February 2010

Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals finds Oklahoma E-Verify Law Unconstitutional

TPS Registration Process for Haitians

H-2B Oil Rig Workers Win Bid To Amend Overtime Action

USCIS Issues Guidance on H-1B Requirements for Employer–Employee Relationship

CBP Implements New Admission Policies at Newark, NJ, Airport to Identify Fraud in Employment-Related Visa Classifications

CBP Reminds U.S.-Bound Travelers from Visa Waiver Program Countries to Complete Online Travel Authorization

DOS Issues March 2010 Visa Bulletin

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California Supreme Court Holds That Labor Code Section 233 Is Not Applicable To Sick Leave Policies That Provide For Unlimited Number Of Days Off

While employers are not required to provide paid sick leave to their California employees, those that do provide such a benefit are required to abide by the provisions of Labor Code sections 233 and 234. Labor Code section 233 mandates that employers who provide a paid sick leave benefit must allow employees to use one-half of their annual accrued paid sick leave to care for an ill family member (parent, child, spouse or registered domestic partner). This provision of the Labor Code is commonly called “kin care” leave. In addition, Labor Code section 234 prohibits employers from disciplining or terminating employees because they use “kin care” leave.

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Payment and Delivery System Reform – It’s Only a Matter of Time


In my most recent article in the series I have been writing for the BNA’s Health Law Reporter on payment and delivery system reform, accountable care organizations and bundled payments, I comment on where things are now that federal reform has stalled. The article, titled “Payment and Delivery System Reform: It’s Only a Matter of Time,” argues that changes in payment and delivery are on the horizon regardless of the pace of federal reform and that providers (and payers as well) should continue their efforts toward accountable care to meet the cost and quality challenges that are no less daunting today than they were a month ago. Please click here to view. I hope you find it of interest.

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AHRQ Announces a Request for Applications for Partnerships to Participate in ACTION II

by Lynn Shapiro SnyderLee H. Rosebush and Daniel G. Gottlieb

February 2010

On January 20, 2010, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (“AHRQ“) announced its Request for Proposal (“RFP“) No. AHRQ-10-10005 entitled Accelerating Change and Transformation of Organizations and Networks (“ACTION II“).[i] Letters of Intent are due March 1, 2010. Applications must be received by noon (ET) on March 23, 2010. AHRQ anticipates awarding 12 to 15 “cost reimbursement, multiple-award, task order-type contract[s] . . . for a period of five years, [t]hree years with one two-year option.”[ii]

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UPDATE – COBRA Subsidy: DOL Issues Updated Model COBRA Notices and Other Guidance

As we advised you in our Client Alert that was issued on December 24, 2009 (“UPDATE: Cobra Subsidy: What it Means for Employers Now“), President Obama signed into law the Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2010 (the “Act”), which, among other things, extended and expanded certain provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (“ARRA”) pertaining to premium assistance for benefits under the Consolidated Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (“COBRA”). The Department of Labor (“DOL”) has issued the following updated information, of which we wanted to make you aware:

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A Benefit for the People of Haiti

If your schedule permits, please join us on March 12, 2010, for an event in Manhattan to raise funds to help the people of Haiti. Daniel Boulud and other chefs will graciously donate delicious treats for all guests to enjoy. The benefit also will feature music, art, and a silent auction. Click here for more information.

Money raised at the event will be given to World Hope International, a faith-based relief and development organization that is deeply committed to the long-term, sustained rebuilding of Haiti after last month’s tragic earthquake.

Please save the date. I hope that you can make it!

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BC’s 2010 Throne Speech – Untapping BC’s Clean Energy Potential

Today, the Lieutenant-Governor of British Columbia delivered the Speech from the Throne (click to read), which opened the Second Session of the 39th Parliament of British Columbia.

The 2010 Olympics and the economy were principal topics of course, but the BC government’s commitment to revamping the Province’s clean energy industry also featured prominently. Below are some of the highlights from the Speech relevant to the clean energy sector:

  • The BC government will take a fresh look at B.C.’s regulatory regimes, including the BC Utilities Commission.
  • BC can harness [BC’s untapped energy] potential to generate new wealth and new jobs in its communities while it lower greenhouse gas emissions within and beyond our borders.
  • Clean energy is a cornerstone of BC’s Climate Action Plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by one‑third by 2020.
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President Obama Backs Department of Labor Misclassification Fight

by Evan J. Spelfogel

February 2010

On February 1, 2010, President Barack Obama released his federal budget for the coming fiscal year, including $117 billion for the United States Department of Labor, of which $25 million was set aside expressly to help the DOL combat employee misclassification. This includes, specifically, identifying and litigating against employers that categorize workers as independent contractors when, in fact, they are employees, and that classify as exempt from overtime those employees who do not meet the requirements of the White Collar Exemptions under Part 541 of the Wage and Hour Regulations.

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