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Posted May 19, 2015

Employers Gearing Up For New Retail Workers’ Bill of Rights

Lisa Schmid, a labor and employment attorney with Nilan Johnson Lewis, says that larger companies, especially, should consider designing their systems and developing strategies for compliance to handle these new requirements on a national basis, not just in San Francisco. “Other areas of the country are likely to follow this path eventually,” says Schmid.

Posted May 19, 2015

Federal Contractors: Special Employment Rules for Me, But Not for Thee?

Contractors that provide services directly to the federal government may be wondering if they’re getting picked on or put on a pedestal. According to one labor attorney, the answer is both: government rules governing federal contractor employment practices have become radically different compared to those serving private enterprises.

Posted May 19, 2015

Crowdsourced Arbitration Claims Could Shake Up Labor Law

“What was once a cost-effective move could backfire if a company is targeted through a crowdsourced effort,” says Cornell. “Essentially that could lead to ‘death by 1,000 cuts.’ And until the courts have scrutinized this strategy, companies should be wary of the potential impact a crowdsourced arbitration or claims movement can have on labor and employment claims.”

Posted May 19, 2015

Will Social Media Make the Non-Compete as We Know It Obsolete?

Despite the ever-shifting world of employment law, one tried-and-true aspect has remained largely unchanged through the years: the non-compete agreement. Invoked by employers to protect legitimate business interests, non-competes may include nuances, but in general, they prohibit employees from accepting a position in direct competition with the employer and/or soliciting the employer’s customers after employment ends.

Posted May 19, 2015

New Minimum Wage Laws Leading to Border Wars?

Boosting minimum wage was a big theme at the state level last year. As a result, the minimum wage rates in at least 30 states are going up in 2015. Although minimum wage at the federal level remains unchanged, wide-ranging minimum wage requirements for states are putting pressure on companies to compare their own standards to those of the neighboring states. And while a company may have the advantage of paying lower wages for their employees under the state’s minimum wage standards, the disadvantage lies in the labor pool when potential staff are crossing the border to a state that pays better.

Posted May 19, 2015

When Crafting a Non-Compete Agreement, Beware of Illusory Promises

Recent court cases might be signaling a new trend for how non-compete agreements are interpreted - one that looks at the sufficiency of the contract’s consideration, rather than its existence. Historically, the analysis of whether consideration exists is very simple: two parties exchange promises—what you see is what you get—and there is no doubt as to the existence of consideration.

Posted May 15, 2015

Communicable Diseases: What’s an Employer to Do?

In the past year, communicable disease outbreaks have dominated the headlines. Ebola arrived in the United States last fall; measles resurged this winter; and this year's influenza strains were some of deadliest in recent memory.

Posted May 15, 2015

Wall Street Journal Turns to Nilan Johnson Lewis for Expertise on Employment Benefits for Front Page Story

With same sex marriage being legal in all but 13 states, about a third of U.S. employers currently provide benefits for unmarried gay partners. But in states where gay marriage is legal, some employers are discontinuing domestic partner benefits and requiring all couples to wed whether gay or straight before receiving benefits. Cornell discussed the possibility of reverse discrimination lawsuits for employers, and how that is partially fueling the push for dropping domestic partnership benefits.

Posted April 29, 2015

Supreme Court Affirms Judicial Review of EEOC, Requires Agency to Discuss Specific Claims and Allow Employer to Rectify Practices

This “manageable standard of review”—announced by a unanimous Court—requires the EEOC to demonstrate that, prior to commencing a lawsuit, it notified the employer of the discriminatory practice and identified “which employees (or what class of employees) had suffered as a result.” The EEOC must also give the employer an opportunity to discuss and remedy the practice prior to suing.

Posted April 24, 2015

Nilan Johnson Lewis Named A 2015 Go-To Law Firm® for Fortune 500 Companies

Nilan Johnson Lewis has been recognized as a 2015 “Go-To Law Firm®” for Fortune 500 companies by Corporate Counsel magazine. The firm was recognized for its work on behalf of notable, large companies, including: Best Buy, Citigroup, Con-way, Ford, Merck, MetLife, Target, United Parcel Service, US Foods, and Wells Fargo.

Posted April 20, 2015

Nilan Johnson Lewis Recognized by Law360 as a Top Law Firm for Female Attorneys

Nilan Johnson Lewis is proud to be ranked highly (16th) on Law360’s inaugural list of the 100 best U.S. law firms for female attorneys. The firm is also recognized as a Law360 Ceiling Smasher, a ranking that highlights 25 firms that have made significant strides toward gender equality by hiring or promoting a large percentage of female shareholders. Nilan Johnson Lewis is ranked sixth on that list, and the highest of any firm in Minnesota, with 39 percent of its shareholders being women.

Posted April 1, 2015 with Tags , ,

New Rules Set to Accelerate Union Elections

Private sector employers who prefer to keep their operations union-free should take note: on April 14, 2015, new rules developed by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) aimed at expediting union elections will likely take effect. The new rules will make three major adjustments to the NLRB's pre-existing procedures.

Posted March 31, 2015

The Land of Cheese, Beer … and Widespread Restrictive Covenants?

If there’s one thing states can agree on when it comes to non-compete agreements, it’s that nobody can agree what to do about them. Michigan, which broadly permits restrictive covenant agreements, is considering a bill that would severely restrict the practice. And now the opposite is happening in Wisconsin, with a new bill under consideration that would make the state considerably more friendly to non-compete contracts.

Posted March 17, 2015

Webinar: Tips for Handling Outbreak Concerns in the Workplace

In the face of news-making Ebola and measles outbreaks, many companies want to know how to handle outbreak concerns affecting their employees and places of business. Attorneys Veena Iyer and Elizabeth Winchell will discuss frequently asked questions for handling outbreak concerns in the workplace in a Minnesota CLE webinar on April 1, 2015.

Posted March 5, 2015

Incoming! Despite Lack of “Ice Missile” Laws in Minnesota, Trucking Companies Still Potentially Liable for Negligence

If you are a resident of a northern state, the sight of ice and snow flying from the roof of moving vehicles is not unfamiliar. These incidents have the potential to cause severe injury or death to drivers. In a recent event on Highway 36 in Roseville, Minnesota, a chunk of ice flew off a tractor-trailer and hit the windshield of a nearby passenger vehicle.

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