Legal Insights

Minnesota Restaurateurs: Get Compliant with Tip Statutes Before Super Bowl LII

Super Bowl LII at U.S. Bank Stadium presents a great opportunity for Minneapolis restaurateurs to generate significant income from parties hosted before and during the big game. With that opportunity, though, comes the challenge of complying with Minnesota’s unique tip-pooling statute—unlike federal laws and those of other states—and avoiding the potential for greater liability. Restaurants planning Super Bowl parties should prepare now to meet the law’s requirements and avoid litigation after the Super Bowl LII victor is crowned. More >

Employers Shouldn’t Jump to Any DACA Conclusions

The Trump administration announced it is rescinding DACA, or the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, with Attorney General Jeff Sessions noting the Department of Justice could not defend the program in court. As a practical matter, DACA’s rescission will result in employers having to terminate the employment of members of the workforce. In doing so, employers must ensure any employment decisions are made based on actual knowledge of employment authorization and not suspicions or assumptions about an employee’s immigration status either from the employer or a manager. More >

Employers Feeling Late Summer Heat on I-9 Compliance

If it’s not already clear to employers that Uncle Sam means business regarding employment eligibility, the end of summer may serve as a loud wake-up call. Last August, the U.S. DOJ, DHS and DOL together announced a doubling of civil fines for violations of Form I-9 requirements, which raised the ceiling for a single paperwork violation to a potential whopping $2,156. More >

The Questionable Non-Compete: How to Hire Someone but Avoid a Tortious Interference Claim

The Scenario: Your company has a great applicant for a job opening, Jane, but you learn during the interview process that Jane signed a non-compete agreement with her current employer. You can quickly spot some reasons why the non-compete is unenforceable. You acknowledge there is some risk in hiring Jane, though, including that her current employer may sue Jane for breaching the contract and your company for interfering with her contract—a tortious interference claim. So, now what? Setting aside Jane and her own legal risks, what specific steps should you take to set up your best defense to a claim that your company interfered with Jane’s contract? More >

MN Supreme Court Redefines “Good Faith” Under MN Whistleblowers Act

On August 9, 2017, the Minnesota Supreme Court redefined what “good faith” means under the 2013 amendment of the Minnesota Whistleblowers Act (MWA). In Friedlander v. Edwards Life Sciences, LLC, the Court concluded that its prior interpretations of "good faith" gave the phrase a meaning different from the definition provided in the 2013 amendment and, as a result, those prior decisions are abrogated. The Court reasoned that any other conclusion would render the "good faith" definition section of the 2013 amendment superfluous. More >

Washington’s Whiplash: Sexual Orientation Discrimination and Title VII

In the last six months, the scope of federal protection against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation (and gender identity) has been a hot topic in the courts and Trump administration. During the Obama administration, federal agencies and the Department of Justice argued in favor of such protection. The Trump administration is taking the opposite approach, and yesterday the Department of Justice filed an amicus brief in the Second Circuit explicitly arguing that Title VII does not prohibit sexual orientation discrimination. The courts are divided. In the spring of 2017, the Seventh Circuit ruled that sexual orientation discrimination is sex discrimination under Title VII, while the Eleventh Circuit rejected that view. The Second Circuit is weighing the issue, and in the meantime, what's an employer to do? More >