As illustrated by the recent lawsuit by America’s Test Kitchen against celebrity chef Christopher Kimball, companies in a variety of industries are vulnerable to losing their trade secrets.
As if the start-again, stop-again saga with the U.S. Department of Labor’s rules increasing the minimum salary threshold for exempt workers wasn’t confusing enough, at least one state has jumped into the fray and changed its own overtime rules — New York. Effective December 31, 2016, the New York Department of Labor amended its minimum wage rules to increase the minimum threshold salary that employers must pay administrative and executive employees to maintain their overtime exemptions. This will have a significant impact on New York employers’ bottom lines to the extent that their exempt workers are not paid a salary meeting the new floor rates. If you were unaware of this change, a quick review of the chart we provide below could save you from racking up thousands of dollars in overtime liabilities and penalties for failure to meet the new standards.
2016 brought about a host of changes for employers, including new political leaders, ever-changing technology, and new and more open dialogue on a variety of different issues. Aside from politics, perhaps one of the biggest issues brought to the forefront this past year concerns the topic of mental health. Once taboo, discussions of mental health issues are being publicly championed by the likes of Michelle Obama, Kate Middleton, Kristen Bell, and Lady Gaga. This new “normal” relating to mental health encourages those suffering to seek treatment without the fear of stigma.
As every employer knows, the Obama era has not been kind from a labor law perspective. The five-member National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), which has had a Democratic majority during recent years, has issued a host of pro-union decisions over the past eight years. Along with new rules that speed up the union election process, those decisions have made it easier for unions to organize, and often made it harder for employers to enforce disciplinary rules.
Bong … Bong … Bong … that is the death knell you thought you heard following the decision from the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals (covering Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin) in Berger v. NCAA earlier this month. After that case, many legal prognosticators proclaimed the demise of student-athletes’ claims that they are actually employees of their colleges and universities, and thus, entitled to wages for their athletic services under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).