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New York Employment Law Blog

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Changes may be on the horizon concerning ‘salary negotiation’ during the hiring process


Work history, background and education credentials are among the top most often-requested bits of information solicited in a job interview. Intertwined with this conversation is usually the inquiry into salary requirements or salary history – which typically sets the tone for the subsequent pay rate accompanying an incoming job offer. However, lawmakers in states across the U.
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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Lawsuit filed against Chipotle concerning its ‘English only’ policy


There is, of course, no “national language” in the United States – despite what some may argue. Nonetheless, the popular food chain Chipotle has allegedly implemented an “English only” policy in all its restaurants across the nation – including areas with a predominantly Spanish-speaking clientele and resident base. Now, a former employee of the chain has initiated a lawsuit alleging discrimination based on nation origin, which is a protected class under the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
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Monday, November 28, 2016

Federal Judge Blocks Overtime Rule


What is the status of the Labor Department's overtime rule?

In May, we reported on the sweeping changes to the so-called white collar exemptions to the overtime rule under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) for executive, professional, administrative and highly compensated employees. Now, a federal judge has blocked the Obama Administration's attempt to extend overtime pay to an estimated 4 million salaried workers.


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Monday, November 28, 2016

A Look at Age Discrimination in Silicon Valley


Is age discrimination a problem in the tech-sector?

As parts of the workforce grows older, age discrimination lawsuits are becoming increasingly common, particularly in industries in which employers tend to be younger, such as the tech sector. In fact, according to the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), there have been 90 age-related lawsuits filed against a number of leading technology companies in Silicon Valley.

The wave of lawsuits has been filed against tech giants such as Hewlett-Packard, Cisco Systems, Apple, Google and Oracle, most of which claim wrongful termination, and all of these entities have denied claims of age discrimination.


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Sunday, November 27, 2016

What is a Hostile Work Environment?


The contemporary workplace is rapidly evolving, but this does not mean employees can escape bad bosses, or rude colleagues. Many people mistakenly believe that a hostile work environment is one that is merely unpleasant, however, this is not the case. There are certain legal criteria that determine when a workplace is considered to be hostile.

Legal Criteria for a Hostile Work Environment

Generally, a hostile work environment is one in which the behavior, action or communication of a boss, supervisor, manager or coworker makes it impossible for an employee to perform his or her job. In addition, the hostility must be associated with legally prohibited behavior such as discrimination,


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Sunday, November 27, 2016

Protecting Freelancers in New York City from Wage Theft


What is the Freelance Isn't Free Act?

Freelancers who work in New York City often joke that the operative word in freelance is "free." This is so because they often face long delays getting paid for their work. Not only are they not paid in a timely fashion, it is not uncommon for freelancers and independent contractors to get stiffed. That's the bad news. The good news is that help may be on the way.


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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

OVERTIME RULE BLOCKED


Many employers have been preparing for the United States Department of Labor’s (the “DOL”) new federal overtime rule, which was set to double the salary threshold exemption from overtime pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act from $23,660 per year to $47,476 per year effective December 1, 2016.  However, a Texas federal judgment blocked the rule on November 22, 2016 by issuing a preliminary injunction finding that the DOL exceeded its authority by raising the salary threshold too high and by providing for automatic adjustments to the threshold every three years.  As a result, the DOL is now enjoined from implementing and enforcing the rule pending further order of the courts. 

The case is


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Sunday, September 25, 2016

Preventing Sexual Harassment in the Workplace


How can employers help prevent sexual harassment in the workplace?

Sexual harassment in the workplace can be detrimental to the business as a whole. Not only does it create discomfort, dissent, and often fear, among employees, but it interferes with company efficiency and can create significant legal exposure for employers. If you are an employer handling complaints of sexual harassment or simply looking to be proactive in establishing appropriate boundaries in your workplace, you should consult a talented employment lawyer experienced in such matters.


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Sunday, September 25, 2016

Wahlburgers in Coney Island Faces Wage Theft Allegations


What are my rights if my employer does not pay me for my time worked?

Brooklyn restaurant Wahlburgers, subject of the popular A&E reality show, is facing a lawsuit from five former employees who claim the restaurant routinely denied their wages.  The Wahlburgers chain launched in 2011 outside of Boston.  Just last year, the chain expanded to include a Coney Island store.  Since its opening, however, employees allege that the restaurant has broken numerous federal and state labor laws and withheld wages from hundreds of employees. 

Former employees have filed a lawsuit in Brooklyn federal court.


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Sunday, August 28, 2016

EEOC Extends Title VII Protections


Can a discrimination claim be brought based on sexual orientation or gender identity?

In July, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a bulletin clarifying the prohibition of sex discrimination under Title VII of Civil Rights Act includes employment discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation and that it intends to enforce the law accordingly.

This action is designed to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees from discrimination and retaliation regardless of state and local laws to the contrary. While local and state laws already in place prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity still stand, the EEOC will enforce these prohibitions  in jurisdictions that permit, or do not prohibit, these forms of discrimination.

The Backdrop

The EEOC has long been working toward covering members of the LGBT community under Title VII's sex discrimination protections. The bulletin is the culmination of the agency's 2012-2016 Strategic Enforcement Plan (SEP) which made a priority of covering LGBT individuals under Title VII.


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Sunday, August 14, 2016

The “Child Care Gap” And Employment Discrimination


If you believe you have been affected by employment or gender discrimination, you should consult your attorney to learn about your options.  Despite having great credentials, you may be struggling to find a job and to provide for your children.  Mothers attempting to return to the workforce often find difficulty in securing employment. 

This happened to one New York woman who took a ten-year break in order to provide for her children.  After many failed interview attempts, the mother of three began to lose hope.


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