In our original post, we reviewed the Pennsylvania Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) approval of proposed new regulations by Governor Tom Wolf’s administration concerning tipped employees.

Since then, the Pennsylvania Attorney General completed its review and approved the regulation. The regulation will go into effect on August 5, 2022. Below is a review of

In November 2021, Governor Tom Wolf’s administration proposed a new regulation that will require tipped employees to earn at least $135 a month in tips before an employer is permitted to pay the $2.83 per hour tipped rate, rather than state’s minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. Currently, in Pennsylvania, employers can pay tipped employees

As we previously reported, this past September the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) proposed a new rule that would create a uniform approach to the way companies classify workers as independent contractors or employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). More specifically, in the proposed rule, the DOL adopted the “economic reality” test,

The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has had, and will continue to have, a substantial impact on the U.S. workplace. We have prepared a series of FAQs compiled based on some of the more common questions that clients with California-based employees have posed to us over roughly the past six weeks.

These FAQs are general and high-level

As we have previously reported here, California Assembly Bill 5 (the bill) is slated to codify the California Supreme Court’s 2018 landmark decision in Dynamex Operations West v. Superior Court of Los Angeles, requiring companies to apply the “ABC” test in classifying their workers. The ABC test requires that workers be considered “employees” instead of “independent contractors” if their work is part of the employer’s regular business, or if the employer exercises control over how its workers complete their jobs.

Yesterday, the California Senate approved the bill as currently drafted and returned it to the State Assembly, as a matter of formality, where it is expected to be approved. The bill received much opposition from various gig-economy companies despite Governor Gavin Newsom’s endorsement. Once the Assembly passes the bill, Governor Newsom is expected to sign it into law, with an effective date of January 1, 2020. The bill will apply to many workers previously classified as independent contractors, and will apply to app-based companies operating in the gig-economy space, which will notably transform the gig economy in California.

In recent months, the bill was amended to include various carveouts for approximately 50 industries, including salon workers, insurance agents, doctors, lawyers, accountants, and securities brokers.

Notably absent from the current form of the bill is an exclusion for gig-economy workers. App-based companies have traditionally operated on a business model that touts the flexibility of the independent contractor model, which has been embraced by many gig workers, notwithstanding the lack of legal protections afforded to employees in the areas of earnings and benefits. However, if the bill is signed into law in its current form, gig-economy workers will be considered employees entitled to labor protections, which will likely increase the amount of wages and benefits such workers currently earn.

It is anticipated that the bill will have far-reaching consequences in California, affecting approximately 1 million workers previously classified as independent contractors and companies whose business models are based on utilizing independent contractors, who tend to be less expensive than employees. Once the bill is signed into law, most workers will likely need to be classified as employees entitled to minimum wage, overtime, and unemployment benefits. These newly classified employees may also gain the right to join a labor union.
Continue Reading California leads the way in passing landmark legislation to classify gig workers as employees

New York State and City legislators have enacted a flurry of new workplace-related regulations in the past few years. The new laws touch upon everything from high-profile issues like sexual harassment prevention and paid family leave, to seemingly more mundane matters like paid time off to vote. With this bustle of legislative activity, it is entirely possible that one or more of the new laws flew under your radar. With that in mind, we want to flag some of the more important New York State and City legislative developments from the past few years (with corresponding links to our prior posts on these topics):
Continue Reading Don’t Fuggedaboutit: Keeping up with the ever-changing New York State and City employment law landscape

Employers considering requiring their employees sign arbitration agreements with class waivers just got a real-world example of the effectiveness of such agreements. On September 25, 2018, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld the enforceability of arbitration agreements signed by thousands of Uber drivers in California. In the underlying lawsuits, the Uber

On July 18, 2018, New York City’s temporary scheduling provisions of the New York City Fair Workweek Law went into effect. As a reminder, this law requires covered employers to grant employees a maximum of two temporary work schedule changes per calendar year for qualifying personal events. Also, the law prohibits employers from retaliating against

Recently, New York’s Industrial Board of Appeals (IBA) revoked regulations issued by the State’s Department of Labor (NYSDOL) governing employee wage payments via direct deposit and payroll debit cards, which were scheduled to go into effect March 7, 2017. The IBA, an independent agency with certain oversight authority over the NYSDOL, held that the proposed regulations exceeded the NYSDOL’s regulatory powers.

New York employers were already prohibited from paying their employees through direct deposit without first obtaining the employees’ advance written consent. The invalidated regulations, published by the NYSDOL September 7, 2016, attempted to impose additional requirements on employers before they could pay employees via direct deposit or payroll debit cards.  A full discussion of those now defunct obligations is available here.
Continue Reading New York Wage Payment Regulations Are Revoked at the Eleventh Hour

In New York, a large number of wage and hour requirements are statutorily codified in the Labor Law. Many others requirements, however, are set forth in regulations known as wage orders, which are issued and updated from time-to-time by the New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL).  The NYSDOL publishes wage orders covering the hospitality, building service, nonprofit, agricultural, and miscellaneous (i.e., all other) industries.  Adherence to the statutory Labor Law, but not to the wage orders, can have disastrous consequences.

To that end, on the morning of December 28, 2016, the NYSDOL finalized amendments to each of the wage orders that will have a tremendous impact on how New York employers pay their workers. The finalized wage orders, which are unchanged from the proposed orders published by the NYSDOL in mid-October, take effect in just three days, on December 31.
Continue Reading NY Dept of Labor Finalizes Major Changes to Wage Regulations