Wage & Hour

  • May 29, 2024

    ​​​​​​​Merrill Lynch Inks $20M Deal In Financial Advisers' Bias Suit

    Merrill Lynch has agreed to pay nearly $20 million to settle class action claims filed in Florida federal court alleging discrimination and retaliation against a proposed class of nearly 1,400 Black financial advisers who alleged they received less pay and promotions compared to their white counterparts. 

  • May 29, 2024

    Contractor Rule Combats Misclassification, Nonprofits Say

    The U.S. Department of Labor's updated independent contractor classification rule is necessary to combat misclassification that a previous version of the rule exacerbated, two nonprofits said in a brief opposing business groups' challenge to the rule.

  • May 29, 2024

    McDonald's Wants Out Of Workers' Lactation Suit

    Two workers claiming McDonald's didn't provide sanitary places for employees to pump breast milk failed to show that the fast-food chain was their direct employer, the company told an Illinois federal court, urging it to toss the proposed collective suit.

  • May 29, 2024

    5th Circ. Says Arbitrator To Decide OT Collective's Status

    The Fifth Circuit found a proposed collective action seeking unpaid overtime should be sent into arbitration, where an arbitrator can decide whether the case can proceed on a representative basis, because the arbitration agreement's language states that question is within the arbitrator's purview.

  • May 29, 2024

    9th Circ. Affirms Dismissal Of Doctor's Military Bias Suit

    An Arizona hospital defeated a doctor's discrimination lawsuit for the second time, with the Ninth Circuit upholding an Arizona federal judge's decision to toss the doctor's claims that the hospital showed bias against his military status by not renewing his contract after he deployed.

  • May 29, 2024

    TGI Fridays Ducked Uniform Maintenance Pay, NY Servers Say

    TGI Fridays ducked New York regulations requiring employers to pay for the maintenance of workers' uniforms while also evading minimum wage laws for tipped workers, three servers said in a proposed collective and class action filed in federal court Tuesday.

  • May 29, 2024

    Flowers Foods Subsidiary Must Face Wage Claims

    A California federal judge cut two subsidiaries of Flowers Foods from a suit alleging workers were misclassified as independent contractors, but left a third on the hook for unpaid overtime wages and failure to reimburse claims after finding the worker was integral to the subsidiary's business.

  • May 29, 2024

    Fisher Phillips Adds Employment Pro In Dallas From GRSM50

    Fisher Phillips has strengthened its Dallas roster with a litigator experienced in representing employers in a broad array of complex labor and employment disputes who came aboard from Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani LLP.

  • May 28, 2024

    Kia, Hyundai Still Face RICO Claims In Foreign Labor Suit

    Hyundai and Kia are still confronted with claims that they were in on a scheme to obtain cheap labor from skilled Mexican engineers seeking participation in a professional visa program after a Georgia federal judge determined workers had adequately alleged the companies' involvement.

  • May 28, 2024

    Apple Affiliate Says 'Biased Witnesses' Merit Verdict Reversal

    An Apple-affiliated repair company is taking another shot at escaping claims of wage and hour violations in a multistate wage class action, asking a North Carolina federal judge for a directed verdict or new trial based on what the company characterized as insufficient evidence.

  • May 28, 2024

    Healthcare Tech Co. To Pay $1.5M To End Class Wage Claims

    A healthcare software consulting company agreed to a $1.5 million deal resolving claims it violated Washington state wage law by requiring its software training staff to work up to 80 hours and seven days a week, according to a motion to approve the deal filed in federal court.

  • May 28, 2024

    Kroger, Albertsons Must Give FTC Texts, Written Notes

    Claims from a pair of multibillion-dollar grocery giants that a discovery request will pose financial burden held no sway over a Federal Trade Commission in-house judge who last week ordered Kroger and Albertsons to produce text messages and handwritten notes from key employees as part of the agency's merger challenge.

  • May 28, 2024

    Amazon Driver Says Order Clearly Axed Misclassification Suit

    A now-retired federal judge clearly dismissed a suit claiming Amazon misclassified workers as independent contractors when she pushed it into arbitration, the Amazon flex driver suing the company told a New Jersey federal court.

  • May 28, 2024

    O'Reilly Auto Parts Inks $4.1M COVID Screening Settlement

    O'Reilly Auto Enterprises has agreed to pay $4.1 million to settle a California wage and hour lawsuit alleging that the company should have paid workers for the time they spent undergoing COVID-19 screenings before shifts and for work performed during meal breaks, according to a court memo.

  • May 28, 2024

    Littler Brings On Ogletree Pay Equity Leader In NYC

    Employment and labor law giant Littler Mendelson PC announced Tuesday that it has grown its New York team with the addition of a pay transparency law expert and former pay equity practice group co-chair at Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC.

  • May 28, 2024

    Calif. Ups Prosecutor Budgets By $8.6M To Fight Wage Theft

    More than a dozen public prosecutors in California will receive nearly $8.6 million from the state to set up wage theft enforcement programs, the California Department of Industrial Relations announced.

  • May 28, 2024

    Contractor Rule Doesn't Hurt Groups Challenging It, DOL Says

    The U.S. Department of Labor's final rule sorting out workers' independent contractor classification incorporates long-used standards, and therefore the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other groups' arguments of harm aren't plausible, the department told a Texas federal court.

  • May 28, 2024

    Transit Co., Bus Drivers' Wage Deal OK'd

    An Ohio federal judge placed the final stamp of approval Tuesday on a $200,000 deal between a transportation company and the bus drivers accusing it of failing to pay them overtime wages.

  • May 24, 2024

    Workers' Atty Says 'Game Over' For Hospital On Wage Liability

    Counsel for a group of workers said Friday it was "game over" for a Seattle-area hospital system facing a class action suit for allegedly violating state law with its break policy, urging a judge to rule the system was liable because it acknowledged workers on long shifts didn't take a second mealtime.

  • May 24, 2024

    9th Circ. Says H-2A Employers Must Pay Highest Wages

    The Ninth Circuit on Friday said the U.S. Department of Labor can't let employers pay foreign farmworkers on H-2A visas a lower wage rate, rejecting the department's argument that the matter is moot because the previous harvest season is over.

  • May 24, 2024

    Jazz Director Accuses Philly Pops, Execs Of RICO Conspiracy

    A former Philly Pops jazz director has sued the defunct orchestra group, its ex-CEO, a rival orchestra, the Kimmel Center and others in Pennsylvania federal court, claiming they conspired to monopolize the orchestral music market and lied about the organization's debt to force it to shut down while depriving him of pay.

  • May 24, 2024

    CVS Hit With PAGA Suit Alleging OT, Records Violations

    CVS Pharmacy Inc. regularly requires employees to work overtime due to understaffing and unreasonably high workloads without appropriately compensating them, and the company alters records by clocking employees out to make it seem it is complying with labor laws, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in California state court.

  • May 24, 2024

    Ex-Employee, Furnisher Renew Settlement Bid In FLSA Suit

    A corporate office furnisher and a former employee who alleged he was fired after complaining about unpaid overtime have once again asked a Georgia federal judge to approve a settlement between them, saying they cured all issues identified by the judge when he refused to approve the deal in April.

  • May 24, 2024

    5th Circ. Again Upholds Engineers' OT Win

    A Fifth Circuit panel on Friday backed for the second time a lower court's ruling that two engineers receiving a weekly minimum salary as part of their compensation package were not overtime-exempt and sent the case back to the district court to determine damages awards.

  • May 24, 2024

    Cleaning Co. Should Pay Up In SEIU Arb. Case, Judge Says

    A cleaning company and its related entities should be required to compensate terminated workers with more than $22,000 stemming from an arbitration award, a New York federal magistrate judge recommended Friday, saying a Service Employees International Union affiliate showed the businesses were alter egos.

Expert Analysis

  • One Contract Fix Can Reduce Employer Lawsuit Exposure

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    A recent Fifth Circuit ruling that saved FedEx over $365 million highlights how a one-sentence limitation provision on an employment application or in an at-will employment agreement may be the easiest cost-savings measure for employers against legal claims, say Sara O'Keefe and William Wortel at BCLP.

  • Water Cooler Talk: Sick Leave Insights From 'Parks And Rec'

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    Tracey Diamond and Evan Gibbs at Troutman Pepper spoke with Lisa Whittaker at the J.M. Smucker Co. about how to effectively manage sick leave policies to ensure legal compliance and fairness to all employees, in a discussion inspired by a "Parks and Recreation" episode.

  • What CRA Deadline Means For Biden Admin. Rulemaking

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    With the 2024 election rapidly approaching, the Biden administration must race to finalize proposed agency actions within the next few weeks, or be exposed to the chance that the following Congress will overturn the rules under the Congressional Review Act, say attorneys at Covington.

  • Justices Clarify FAA But Leave Behind Important Questions

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    The U.S. Supreme Court's decision last month in Bissonnette v. LePage firmly shuts the door on any argument that the Federal Arbitration Act's Section 1 exemption is limited to transportation workers whose employers transport goods on behalf of others, but two major issues remain unresolved, say Joshua Wesneski and Crystal Weeks at Weil.

  • What To Expect From The DOL's Final Overtime Rule

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    The U.S. Department of Labor's final overtime rule dramatically increases the salary threshold for white collar workers to be exempt from overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act, so employers should prioritize identifying the potentially affected positions and strategically consider next steps, say Leslie Selig Byrd and Deryck Van Alstyne at Bracewell.

  • Data Shows H-2B Wages May Be Skewed High By Sample Size

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    Occupational Wage and Employment Statistics wage data from April illustrates that smaller sample sizes from less populated areas may be skewing prevailing wages for H-2B visas artificially high, potentially harming businesses that rely on the visa program, says Stephen Bronars at Edgeworth Economics.

  • Refresher On Employee Qualifications For Summer Interns

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    Before companies welcome interns to their ranks this summer, they should consider the extent to which the interns may be entitled to the same legal protections as employees, including the right to be paid for their hours worked and to receive at least minimum wage and overtime, says Kate LaQuay at Munck Wilson.

  • How To Prepare As Employee Data Reporting Deadlines Near

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    As filing deadlines approach, government contractors and private companies alike should familiarize themselves with recent changes to federal and California employee data reporting requirements and think strategically about registration of affirmative action plans to minimize the risk of being audited, say Christopher Durham and Zev Grumet-Morris at Duane Morris.

  • The Practical Effects Of Justices' Arbitration Exemption Ruling

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    The U.S. Supreme Court's recent decision in Bissonnette v. LePage Bakeries, that a transportation worker need not work in the transportation industry to be exempt from the Federal Arbitration Act, may negatively affect employers' efforts to mitigate class action risk via arbitration agreement enforcement, say Charles Schoenwetter and Eric Olson at Bowman and Brooke.

  • New Wash. Laws Employers Should Pay Attention To

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    The Washington Legislature ended its session last month after passing substantial laws that should prompt employers to spring into action — including a broadened equal pay law to cover classes beyond gender, narrowed sick leave payment requirements for construction workers and protections for grocery workers after a merger, say Hannah Ard and Alayna Piwonski at Lane Powell.

  • AI In Accounting Raises OT Exemption Questions

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    A recent surge in the use of artificial intelligence in accounting work calls into question whether professionals in the industry can argue they are no longer overtime exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act, highlighting how technology could test the limits of the law for a variety of professions, say Bradford Kelley at Littler and Stephen Malone at Peloton Interactive.

  • Eye On Compliance: Employee Social Media Privacy In NY

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    A New York law that recently took effect restricts employers' ability to access the personal social media accounts of employees and job applicants, signifying an increasing awareness of the need to balance employers' interests with worker privacy and free speech rights, says Madjeen Garcon-Bonneau at Wilson Elser.

  • Draft Pay Equity Rule May Pose Contractor Compliance Snags

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    The Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council's recently proposed rule that would prohibit government contractors from requesting certain job applicants' salary history seems simple on the surface, but achieving compliance will be a nuanced affair for many contractors who must also adhere to state and local pay transparency laws, say attorneys at Hogan Lovells.