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Employers Must Use New I-9 Come January 22nd

From January 22nd on, employers in the U.S. must use a new I-9 form for all new hires.  The form is prescribed by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and is available in various formats, which can be found at https://www.uscis.gov/i-9, including one that can be filled out online.  The new form is dated 11/14/16; the previous form, dated 3/8/13, may not be used after the 22nd, or else.  For those not already painfully aware of it, the I-9 must…

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Court Grants DoL Motion to Expedite Appeal, But Ruling to Come After Trump Inauguration

Today the U.S. Court of Appeals in New Orleans granted the Department of Labor’s motion to expedite its appeal of the order halting its new overtime rule, and put in place a schedule requiring the parties to file briefs much more quickly than they normally would.   The last brief is not be filed until January 31st, The problem for the DoL is that the oral argument before judges of the Court of Appeals would not take place until after…

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Labor Department Appeals Judge’s Order in Overtime Case

In the continuing saga of the Department of Labor’s new rule on the salary requirement for the white-collar exemptions, on December 1st the DoL filed a notice of appeal from Judge Mazzant’s order enjoining the enforcement of the rule, and the Fifth Circuit has accepted the appeal.  Late on Friday, December 2nd, the Department of Labor filed a motion for an expedited schedule on the appeal, which the State of Nevada, the lead plaintiff contesting the rule, has opposed.  Stay…

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Federal Judge Enjoins New Overtime Rule

On Tuesday, November 22nd, U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant issued a nationwide preliminary injunction against the Department of Labor’s rule raising the salary threshold for the white collar exemptions, which was to take effect on December 1st.  Judge Mazzant sits in Sherman, Texas, and granted the motion filed by lawyers for 21 states, including Nevada and Texas.  The rule is enjoined “pending further order of this Court,” but a preliminary injunction is ordinarily in effect until trial unless the case…

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States Sue Labor Department Over New Overtime Rule

This week, twenty-one states including Texas filed a complaint in federal court against the Department of Labor over its new rule on the white collar exemptions to the Fair Labor Standards Act.  The complaint alleges that at the new rule exceeds the Obama Administration’s power, and seeks declaratory and injunctive relief against the new rule, which is to take effect December 1st and which would double the salary threshold for the white-collar exemptions.  The case was filed in Sherman, Texas,…

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U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Case on Domestic Service Exemptions

At the end of its most recent term, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear a case challenging the Department of Labor’s 2013 regulations on the exemptions for domestic service employees from the minimum wage and overtime laws.  The refusal leaves intact an appeals court’s 2015decision in Home Care Association of America v. Weil upholding the regulations, which primarily narrowed the “companionship” exemption and prohibit third parties (like home care agencies) from claiming the exemptions.  The DoL is now free…

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High Court Issues Boring But Important Decision on Statute of Limitations

On the heels of its recent decision on attorneys’ fees, the U.S. Supreme Court decided on May 23rd when the statute of limitations begins to run in an employment discrimination case where the employee claims “constructive discharge,” i.e., where the employer makes conditions so bad the employee feels compelled to quit.  While not a sexy decision, Green v. Brennan answered this important and difficult question by holding on a vote of 7-1 that the statute of limitations begins to run…

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High Court Issues Boring Decision on Attorneys’ Fees

On May 19th, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an unexciting if not actually boring decision on when a litigant in an employment discrimination lawsuit can be awarded its attorneys’ fees if it is the “prevailing party.”  In CRST Van Expedited, Inc. v. EEOC, the Court ruled that the employer did not have to obtain a “ruling on the merits” (that the employee or the EEOC actually had a bogus claim) in order to be awarded $4 million in attorneys’ fees.…

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Labor Department Issues Long-Awaited Rule on Exemptions

The Department of Labor just issued a long-awaited final rule amending regulations on the “white collar” executive, administrative, professional, and computer employee exemptions from its minimum wage and overtime rules.  Most importantly, the rule doubled the salary threshold for the those exemptions from $455 a week ($23,660 a year) to $913 a week ($47,476 a year), and the threshold is then to be adjusted every three years. If a supposedly exempt employee is not paid at least the new salary,…

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President Signs “Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016”

In a major development in intellectual property law, on May 11th President Obama signed into law the “Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016,” after it passed Congress in rare and overwhelmingly bipartisan votes.  The law created a new federal civil claim for misappropriation of trade secrets.  Employers who want to protect their trade secrets can be the prime beneficiaries of the new law, but they should be aware of its definitions of “trade secret” and “misappropriation.”  The law applies to…

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