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Newsroom image for the post Did the California Supreme Court Instantly Poison the Gig Economy?

Posted May 1, 2018 in Top Stories, Legal Insights

Did the California Supreme Court Instantly Poison the Gig Economy?

On April 30, 2018, the California Supreme Court issued a ruling in Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v Superior Court that will make classification of workers more complex and threaten the gig economy business model. The Court ruled that employers must now rely on the standard commonly referred to as the “ABC” test in order to determine whether workers are employees or independent contractors.

Newsroom image for the post Court Rules Unintentional Age Discrimination Can Occur During Application Process

Posted April 30, 2018 in Top Stories, Legal Insights

Court Rules Unintentional Age Discrimination Can Occur During Application Process

On April 26, 2018, the 7th Circuit ruled that job applicants—not just employees—can assert age discrimination claims arising from facially neutral hiring policies. In Kleber v. CareFusion Corporation, the court departed from recent rulings by other courts—most recently the 11th Circuit in Villareal v. R.J. Tobacco Co.—which have held that only employees can claim that a company’s activities or policies had a “disparate impact” due to age.

Newsroom image for the post DOJ Signals There Are Lawful “No-Poaching” Agreements

Posted April 16, 2018 in Top Stories, Legal Insights

DOJ Signals There Are Lawful “No-Poaching” Agreements

In January 2018, the Department of Justice (DOJ) communicated that it would ramp-up criminal enforcement actions against companies that have no-poaching agreements, which in past years have been seen by the DOJ as a hall-pass allowing employers to avoid competing for workers, stifle demand in a market, and keep wages lower. A recent settlement with three employers, however, has reinforced the notion that not all no-poaching agreements are the same and helped define which kinds of no-poaching agreements may or may not lead to civil or criminal liability.

Newsroom image for the post Ninth Circuit Rules that Salary History Cannot Justify Pay Disparities

Posted April 11, 2018 in Top Stories, Legal Insights

Ninth Circuit Rules that Salary History Cannot Justify Pay Disparities

The Ninth Circuit ruled that employers may not consider a new employee’s prior salary when setting his or her pay, either on its own or with other factors such as years of experience. The Court ruled that allowing employers to rely on prior salaries is incompatible with the broad principal of the Equal Pay Act, which states that men and women should receive equal pay for work.

Newsroom image for the post Nilan Johnson Lewis Welcomes Leah Kippola-Friske

Posted April 6, 2018 in Top Stories

Nilan Johnson Lewis Welcomes Leah Kippola-Friske

Minneapolis-based law firm Nilan Johnson Lewis is pleased to announce the hire of Leah Kippola-Friske as an associate attorney working with both the products liability/mass tort and business litigation practice groups.

Newsroom image for the post Nilan Johnson Lewis Welcomes Case Assistant Mike Manerowski

Posted April 6, 2018 in Top Stories

Nilan Johnson Lewis Welcomes Case Assistant Mike Manerowski

Nilan Johnson Lewis announced the hire of Mike Manerowski as case assistant for the Minneapolis-based firm’s labor and employment group. Manerowski has worked with law firms for more than 15 years, with several years of experience in case management. As the firm has expanded its national labor and employment practice, it has created a need for Manerowski’s organizational expertise, ensuring cases are even more efficiently managed and communication is maintained across attorney and client teams.

Posted April 4, 2018 in Top Stories

What Makes Minnesota Tip-Pooling Laws Unique

Joel O'Malley's article, "What makes Minnesota tip-pooling laws unique*," was published on Minnesota Lawyer. In the article, Joel outlines the complex laws leading to the large settlement Surly Brewing Co. recently paid in the tip-pooling lawsuit.

Posted March 16, 2018 in Legal Insights

Nilan Johnson Lewis Creates Holistic Anti-Harassment Program for Employers

In the wake of the #metoo movement, Nilan Johnson Lewis (NJL), a premier national law firm based in Minneapolis, introduces a legal service offering focused on anti-harassment for employers of all types and sizes, customized to each specific employer. NJL’s new service goes beyond “checking the box,” and helps organizations take proactive steps to address unhealthy workplace cultures, prevent sexual harassment, and respond promptly and decisively should it occur.  

Posted March 2, 2018 in Top Stories, Legal Insights

If Trace-Asbestos Products Cause Comparable Exposure to What’s in the Natural Environment, Are Companies Liable?

Although asbestos has been a known carcinogen leading to mesothelioma and other conditions for decades, it has existed in multiple places, forms and concentrations, and scientists are unable to track the onset of such diseases to a specific root cause. Consequently, plaintiff lawyers often bring lawsuits against multiple parties and once and have succeeded in their attempts to bring these cases to trial by only needing to prove some degree of exposure to any given product containing asbestos, not that the certain product led to their injury, a theory called cumulative exposure.

Posted February 22, 2018 in Top Stories

Shining a Light on Blowing the Whistle

In what seemed to be a fairly easy decision for the Justices, the U.S. Supreme Court in Digital Realty Trust Inc. v. Somers ruled on February 20, 2018, that Dodd-Frank's anti-retaliation provisions, including protections for whistleblowers, do not extend to individuals failing to report violations of securities laws to the SEC.

Posted February 16, 2018 in Top Stories, Legal Insights

What Employers Need to Know About the Austin, TX Paid Sick & Safe Leave Ordinance

In the early hours of February 16, 2018, Austin, Texas, became the first Southern city to pass a paid sick and safe leave law. The final version is slated to go into effect on October 1, 2018, for most employers, although employers with five or fewer employees have a reprieve with an October 1, 2020, effective date. Opponents are already discussing potential preemption legislation, and so it remains to be seen whether the ordinance will go into effect or for how long.

Posted February 13, 2018 in Top Stories

If Your Car is the Driver, Who is Liable?

On January 22, a lawsuit was filed in in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in which the plaintiff accused General Motors of negligence stemming from an accident where a vehicle deploying self-driving technology collided with …

Posted January 9, 2018 in Top Stories, Legal Insights

Does Your Internship Program Pass the Test?

As employers begin to prepare for spring semester and summer break internships, their first step should be to review the “primary beneficiary test” adopted by the Department of Labor (DOL) on January 7. The test will be used to determine whether new hires are bona fide interns or employees.

Posted December 21, 2017 in Top Stories, Legal Insights

Top Ten Laws Affecting California Employers in 2018

The California legislature and governor have had another busy year adding new laws and regulations for California employers. The changes hit virtually every aspect of the employment relationship – including applications, leaves of absence, wage-and-hour, discrimination, retaliation, immigration, and workplace notice requirements. Many new laws expand existing requirements to a broader array of employers. Here are the top ten laws requiring immediate attention for employers to comply.

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