Thursday, September 12, 2019

Employers Must Comply with the FMLA When Evaluating Time-Off Requests to Attend School IEP Meetings

By: Scott A. Mirsky, Principal

SUMMARY: An employee’s request to attend a school meeting to discuss a child’s Individualized Education Program (“IEP”) must be evaluated under the lens of the Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”). If the child has a serious medical condition, then the employer must provide FMLA leave so that an employee can attend their child’s IEP meeting.


Friday, August 16, 2019

New Laws Reflect Rising Tide of Anti-Discriminatory Policy

By: Hayes Edwards, Associate

SUMMARY: Laws passed over the summer in New York and California prohibit employers from enforcing dress codes that restrict traditional African-American hairstyles, and New York has expanded the scope of potential discrimination claims by lowering the standard for severity of mistreatment and eliminating important defenses for employers.


Thursday, August 8, 2019

Back to School: DC Employers Must Provide Leave for School-Related Events

By Scott Mirsky, Principal

Summary: The start of the school year is right around the corner. Employers will start receiving employee requests to take time off to attend school-related events. In DC, an employer must provide parental leave to allow parents to attend school-related activities. We have prepared a Q&A to help employers address this issue.


Monday, July 15, 2019

Employment Policies: Communication and Consistency are Essential

By: Scott A. Mirsky, Principal

SUMMARY: In a recent case decided by the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, an employer was unsuccessful in its attempt to have an employment discrimination case dismissed where evidence existed that the employer failed to inform an employee of its policy on minimum work hours and also inconsistently punished employees who violated this policy.  

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Employers Need to Articulate Clear and Reasonably Specific Grounds for Employment-Related Decisions

By: Scott A. Mirsky, Principal

SUMMARY:
In a recent case decided by the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, when the employer’s admissible evidence was limited to a vague reason explaining why it did not promote an employee, the appeals court ruled that the employer failed to meet its burden of proffering a legitimate and nondiscriminatory explanation for its decision. In Figueroa v. Pompeo, the court explained that it is the employer’s burden to produce evidence of a clear and reasonably specific explanation for its employment-related decisions so that the employee has a full and fair opportunity to present evidence to rebut the employer’s explanation.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Supreme Court Rules Employers Can Unwittingly Waive Requirement to Bring EEOC Charge Before Suit

By: Hayes Edwards, Associate


SUMMARY: Although employees remain obligated to bring their Title VII discrimination allegations to EEOC, or an equivalent office in the State government, before suing their employer, the failure to do so can only be asserted as a defense to the lawsuit if the employer raises it in the initial answer.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Summer Interns, Paid or Unpaid?

By Scott Mirsky, Principal

SUMMARY: Employers must be cautious when evaluating their obligation to pay summer interns. If the employer can satisfy the “primary beneficiary test” then the intern can work without pay. However, if the intern is performing job duties unrelated to the intern’s formal education program and the work performed by the intern displaces other workers, then the intern should be paid as an employee.


Monday, May 13, 2019

Md. Legislative Roundup: Expanded Anti-Discrimination Law and Other Developments Affecting Employers

By: Hayes Edwards, Associate

The General Assembly ended its 2019 legislative session in April, sending several pieces of legislation to the Governor’s desk that will impact Maryland employers. Although Gov. Larry Hogan is thought to be opposed to these bills, the GA appears capable of overriding his veto, as it recently did with the Minimum Wage bill. This new legislation is summarized below, with their likely effective dates.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

DC Employers Must Comply with New Paid Leave Tax

By: Scott A. Mirsky, Principal

SUMMARY: Employers in DC are now faced with another payroll tax. Beginning with wages paid on or after April 1, 2019, employers will be assessed an additional payroll tax of .62 percent. Collection of this tax will begin on July 1, 2019. This tax will fund paid family and medical leave benefits beginning on July 1, 2020.


Friday, April 5, 2019

$15 Minimum Wage Coming to Maryland

By Hayes Edwards, Associate

The “Fight for Fifteen” has landed a knock-out blow in Maryland. On March 28, 2019, the Maryland General Assembly overrode Gov. Larry Hogan’s veto of a bill that will increase the state’s minimum wage to $15.00 by January 1, 2025. As listed below, the minimum wage will climb gradually each year for companies of all sizes.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

DOL Takes Another Crack at Modifying the Overtime Rules

By Scott Mirsky, Principal

Summary: The DOL has proposed new rules that would substantially increase the minimum salary that employees must be paid to qualify for the white collar and highly compensated exemptions to the FMLA overtime requirements.  The increase to the white collar salary threshold would be markedly lower than that which the Obama Administration attempted to implement and, as with the Obama-era regulations, the duties tests associated with the exemptions will not be impacted.