News

Trump Department of Justice Reverses Position on Trans Rights

October 25, 2018

On October 25, 2018, the Department of Justice (“DOJ”), arguing on behalf of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”), contradicted the EEOC’s prior position regarding the rights of transgender employees under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  In a brief submitted to the United States Supreme Court, the DOJ argued that federal law does not prohibit businesses from discriminating against employees on the basis of their gender identity.  The brief echoes an... [...]

New York State Increases Protections against Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

October 09, 2018

On Tuesday, October 9, 2018, New York workers will be assured additional resources to combat sexual harassment in the workplace.  Employers in the Empire State will be required to establish a sexual harassment prevention policy in accordance with new standards promulgated by the New York State Department of Labor (“NYSDOL”), and to provide workers with a complaint form to report incidents of sexual harassment.  Further, employers will be required to provide all employees with sexual... [...]

Closing Time for California Employers Who Short Workers’ Wages at the End of Shifts

July 26, 2018

On July 26, 2018, the California Supreme Court ruled that Starbucks cannot rely on the de minimis doctrine to combat its ex-employee’s claims for unpaid wages when closing the coffee shop at the end of the day.  The ruling is a significant win for hourly workers as it ensures that Golden State employers cannot duck liability when failing to pay workers’ wages for only a few minutes of work per shift. Specifically, in Troester v. Starbucks, California’s highest State court held that... [...]

LGBTQ Rights Not Adversely Impacted by Supreme Court’s Masterpiece Cakeshop Decision

June 04, 2018

On June 4, 2018, the United States Supreme Court delivered its much-anticipated decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop Ltd., et al. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, et al.  In an extremely narrow ruling, the Supreme Court held that Masterpiece Cakeshop did not have to pay penalties for refusing to prepare a wedding cake for a same sex couple. It is crucial to note that the Supreme Court did not rule on the question of whether the bakery, or any private business, may deny services to same-sex... [...]

New York Court Reaffirms Employees’ Rights to Seek Class-Wide Relief for Wage Violations, Regardless of Immigration Status

May 17, 2018

On May 17, 2018, Justice Jeffrey Brown of the New York State Supreme Court for Nassau County shot down an argument that the plaintiffs, who were former employees of the defendants, could not pursue a class action to recover unpaid wages because it was supposedly “patently obvious” that the plaintiffs lacked proper immigration documentation. Specifically, in Molina, et al. v. Two Bros. Scrap Metal, Inc., et al., Justice Brown held that, even if the defendants were correct about the... [...]

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