Average for Settling a Wage-and-Hour Lawsuit: $5.8 Million

Wage-and-hour litigation is the fastest-growing employment law threat employers face, according to a study by the Crowell & Moring law firm. It costs an average of $5.8 million to settle a wage-and-hour case, largely because so many are class-action lawsuits. The firm warns that exempt/nonexempt misclassification cases will continue to be particularly troublesome because of […]

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IRS Relaxes Rules for Worker Misclassification Program

Started in 2011 and ending on July 30 of this year, the worker misclassification forgiveness program run by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) just relaxed its entry rules. The program is designed to allow employers to fess up to misclassifying employees as independent contractors and also failing to issue 1099s for them. Accepted employers can […]

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Former Hostess Employees Certified for Trade Adjustment Assistance

The Department of Labor (DOL) has announced that approximately 18,000 workers laid off in 48 states from 864 Hostess company locations are eligible to apply for Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA). "As President Obama said in his State of the Union address, 'to grow our middle class, our citizens must have access to the education and […]

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Supreme Court to Hear Donning and Doffing Case

The Supreme Court has opted to consider an appeal of a 7th Circuit Court decision that donning and doffing personal protective equipment (PPE) is not a "principal activity" that triggers the start of the workday, and time so spent thus does not have to be compensated. The case, Sandifer, et al. v. U.S. Steel Corp., […]

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Supreme Courts Lets Ruling Stand on Private FLSA Settlements

The Supreme Court has refused to hear an appeal on a 5th Circuit Court's ruling that allowed a private settlement of an overtime dispute. Previously, claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) could only be resolved by a court or the Department of Labor (DOL). The Supreme Court's declining to rule on the private […]

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Supreme Court Considering the Definition of Supervisor

Federal civil rights laws protect employees from harassment and discrimination by their employers and their agents, and "agents" are generally interpreted to mean supervisors. Aggrieved employees and their attorneys have long sought to expand the definition of supervisor beyond someone with the power to hire, fire, demote and discipline to enlarge the pool of those […]

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Annual Injury and Illness Absences from Work Basically Unchanged from 2010

The rate of nonfatal occupational injury and illness cases requiring days away from work to recuperate was 117 cases per 10,000 full-time workers in 2011, statistically unchanged from 2010, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The total number of private industry, state government, and local government cases with days away from work remained statistically […]

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What the Election Means for Employers

With the election under wraps, employers should be mindful of the following employment and labor issues: The Future of the National Labor Relations Board Unions have not forgotten the promises that President Obama made to them in his first campaign. And while the President has had to>focus on pressing issues concerning the economy, it is […]

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Second Largest USERRA Settlement Ever Announced

Though the terms cannot be disclosed, a recent settlement with a returning Wisconsin National Guardsman who was fired from his civilian job is reported to amount to several years' worth of salary. Michael Hanke was terminated by Com Tek, a defense contractor, when he returned from active duty in 2010. Somehow, the U.S. Army, which […]

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New Employee Background Check Rule Takes Effect Jan. 1

Effective Jan. 1, 2013, employers must use a revised “Summary of Consumer Rights” notice to comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). All businesses that conduct background investigations on applicants and employees must comply with the notification and identify theft provisions of the FCRA. Under the FCRA, employers are obliged to obtain a background […]

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