Congress is moving quickly to provide relief to employees who are impacted by COVID-19, and the legislation will also have a big impact on most employers. The House of Representatives passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, H.R. 6201, in a bipartisan vote on Saturday, and the Senate will consider the bill this week. President Trump has expressed his approval of the emergency legislation and is expected to sign it if and when it clears Congress.
Continue Reading Coronavirus Pandemic: House Passes Legislation to Provide Paid Leave for Many Employees

The new decade brings Schiff Hardin’s Labor & Employment Group’s annual legislative update, summarizing new legislation in 2020 under federal law and in Illinois, California, New York, Michigan, and the District of Columbia.

Continue Reading 2020 Labor and Employment Legislative Developments

Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released the final version of its anticipated overtime exemption rule, setting a new annual salary threshold for “white collar” exemptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) at just over $35,000 per year.  In the DOL’s press release accompanying the final rule, the agency anticipated its action will “make 1.3 million American workers newly eligible for overtime pay.”  The new rule will take effect on January 1, 2020.[1]
Continue Reading Increase in FLSA Overtime Exemption Threshold Expected to Make More than One Million Employees Newly Eligible for Overtime Pay

On July 24, 2019, the Chicago City Council voted to pass the Fair Workweek Ordinance that will require covered employers to, among other things, provide employees with at least 10 days’ advance notice of their work schedules and provide additional compensation to employees for any unscheduled changes to their scheduled work hours. Mayor Lori Lightfoot publically supported and is expected to sign the ordinance, which will go into effect on July 1, 2020.
Continue Reading Chicago Fair Workweek Law Set to Impose Sweeping Predictable Workweek Requirements

The haze of Springfield’s recent legislative session has cleared, and Illinois has become the latest state poised to legalize marijuana. Like many other businesses throughout the country, Illinois employers will be faced with the complexity of enforcing their drug and substance abuse policies while their employees have the legal right to use marijuana outside of the workplace.
Continue Reading Weeding Out the Issues of Legalizing Recreational Marijuana in Illinois

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has updated last week’s statement, described here, to confirm that in addition to 2018 “Component 2” pay data, it will now also be seeking data for calendar year 2017 by the September 30 deadline.

While EEO-1 compliance for 2019 appears to be a moving target, employers should plan to heed the EEOC’s statement and prepare to comply with the September 30 deadline for Component 2 data for both 2017 and 2018.
Continue Reading EEOC Compliance Update: Employers Must Now Also Submit 2017 EEO-1 Component 2 Data by September 30

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued a statement notifying covered entities to prepare to submit EEO-1 “Component 2” pay data for calendar year 2018 by the end of September. According to the Notice of Immediate Reinstatement of Revised EEO-1: Pay Data Collection, the EEOC expects to start collecting this data in mid-July, and in the meantime, filers must still submit their EEO-1 “Component 1” data for calendar year 2018 by the extended May 31, 2019 deadline. In light of these developments, covered employers should, at a minimum, prepare to file 2018 Component 2 pay and hours data by September 30, in addition to filing Component 1 data by May 31.
Continue Reading EEOC Compliance Notice: Employers Must File EEO-1 Component 2 Data by September 30

For several years now, union and non-union employers have been stuck between a rock and a hard place because of dissonance between anti-discrimination laws and the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). Consider the following situation: An employer can discipline its employees based on discriminatory or harassing behavior and then face an unfair labor practice charge if the employees claim that their conduct was protected concerted activity under the NLRA. Alternatively, an employer can choose not to discipline its employees for such conduct and then get caught in the crosshairs of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or a state agency for violating a federal or state fair employment law.
Continue Reading Companies Walk a Fine Line Between Disciplining Staff and Violating NLRA

Last week’s decision in Ward v. Tilly’s Inc. means that California employers with on-call policies are required to pay a minimum of two hours reporting time pay, even if the employee is told there is no need to come in to work that day.

A California Court of Appeal held that a company’s on-call scheduling policy requiring employees to call the employer in advance of a shift to find out if they need to appear for work triggered “reporting time” pay obligations under the California Industrial Welfare Commission’s (IWC) Wage Orders.

Under the Wage Orders, an employee who is required to report for work and does report must be paid for half the employee’s usual or scheduled day’s work, but in no event less than two hours’ pay, nor more than four hours’ pay, at the employee’s regular rate of pay.
Continue Reading Reporting for Duty: In California, It’s Compensable, Even When Employees are Told Not to Come to Work

Rather than wait for another case to come before it to address the requirements for joint employer status, the majority of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) members have opted to take the little-used rulemaking route. The proposed rule, which was released on September 14, 2018, would amend 29 CFR part 103 to add §103.40, defining joint employers. The proposed definition is only two sentences long:

An employer, as defined by Section 2(2) of the National Labor Relations Act (the Act), may be considered a joint employer of a separate employer’s employees only if the two employers share or codetermine the employees’ essential terms and conditions of employment, such as hiring, firing, discipline, supervision, and direction. A putative joint employer must possess and actually exercise substantial direct and immediate control over the employees’ essential terms and conditions of employment in a manner that is not limited and routine.


Continue Reading NLRB Tries Again on Joint Employer Question