An Employer’s Guide to the EEOC Guide for Employees with Mental Health Conditions

In 2016, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) noted a rise in claims of discrimination based on mental health conditions. Almost 5,000 such charges resulted in some $20 million for claimants unlawfully denied employment and reasonable accommodations. Even though the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has not changed protections for such employees, the EEOC issued [...]

Freedom of Religion in the Workplace: Finding Accommodations That Work

Religious accommodation can be a minefield, but the law is clear. According to Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, employers must provide reasonable accommodation of their employees’ religious beliefs. At a recent American Bar Association (ABA) Labor and Employment Law Conference, panelists discussed the issue, with these suggestions for how to assure that [...]

A Trump Administration Means Changes Ahead for Labor and Employment

Regardless of whether we find the presidential election results delightful or deplorable, we know that a Trump administration represents a major policy shift. Donald Trump is a businessman first, so we might expect appointments and decisions that align with the interests of big business. During his campaign, however, Trump directed much of his rhetoric toward [...]

Ban The Box Laws Expose Discrimination, But Don’t Fix It

One of the biggest challenges for individuals who have served time in prison is finding employment. Some employers have disqualified applicants with a criminal history across the board. That type of blanket policy violates Title VII because it disproportionately impacts racial minorities. In an effort to curb that trend, lawmakers have enacted “ban the box” [...]

Are misclassified independent contractors putting your company at risk?

The Department of Labor (DOL) has long eschewed the employer practice of classifying workers as independent contractors in order to sidestep compliance with government regulations. From the employer’s perspective, the use of independent contractors allows them to hire highly skilled professionals for specialized work without the expense of benefits and payroll taxes. But misclassification can [...]

Taming The Monsters: Pokémon GO and The Workplace

Like it or not, we live in a world in which the latest trend involves chasing invisible beings around town. The hunt is on, and kids are not the only ones that can’t get enough. In case you’ve been away from the internet for the past month, I’m talking about Pokémon GO, a mobile app [...]

New Overtime Rules — Time to Get Ready

While politicians debate changing minimum wage, new overtime rules from the Department of Labor (DOL) may affect business far more. The regulations, which go into effect on December 1, 2016, will add overtime pay eligibility for an estimated 4.2 million employees — about 1.2 million in Texas. This marks the first significant change to the [...]

A New Level of Trade Secret Protection: The Defend Trade Secrets Act

Last week, President Obama signed the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) of 2016 into law, marking the most significant expansion of federal intellectual property law in decades. For the first time, companies can use federal law to sue for trade secret misappropriation. Companies with proprietary data, especially tech companies, are welcoming the increased level of [...]

Casting Your Corporation: What Employers Can Learn From “Hamilton” Producers

One of the hottest shows on Broadway is Hamilton, a hip-hop musical about the life and times of Alexander Hamilton that features people of color playing notable characters like Hamilton, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and other of their contemporaries. The use of a diverse cast to portray America’s beginnings is an important element of the [...]