Posts tagged Genevieve M. Murphy-Bradacs.
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As featured in #WorkforceWednesday: With such a tumultuous year of labor and employment updates behind us, it begs the question, “What lies ahead in 2024?”

In this special New Year's episode, Epstein Becker Green attorneys share insights and predictions for the 2024 labor and employment space, addressing important topics such as maintaining compliance, promoting mental health, navigating protected concerted activity policies, and staying abreast of the latest developments in artificial intelligence and non-compete guidance.

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In this special year-end episode of Employment Law This Week, recorded live from our 42nd Annual Workforce Management Briefing in New York City, Epstein Becker Green attorneys discuss the biggest employment law trends and crucial workforce changes in 2023, covering everything from non-competes and National Labor Relations Board actions to union dynamics, cybersecurity, and the impacts of artificial intelligence.

Video: YouTubeVimeo.

Podcast: Amazon Music / Audible, Apple Podcasts, Audacy, Deezer, Goodpods, iHeartRadio, Overcast, Pandora, Player FM, Spotify.

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Employment Law This Week® gives a rundown of the top developments in employment and ...

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On August 2, 2023, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or “Board”) announced a long-anticipated decision called Stericyle that will affect how employers craft, apply and enforce workplace policies, regardless of whether a labor union represents their employees. As we anticipated several years ago, the Stericyle Board, with a majority of members nominated by President Joseph Biden, rejected the agency’s 2017 decision in The Boeing Company, in which it adopted a balancing test to evaluate facially neutral employer rules and handbook provisions. Under The Boeing Company test, the Board weighed the nature and extent of such rules’ potential impact on employee rights under the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) against employers’ legitimate justification(s) for the policies.

The majority opinion in Stericycle Inc. substantively revives the NLRB’s stance on workplace rules as established in the 2004 Lutheran Heritage decision. Under this new framework, the mere maintenance of any employer’s rule, policy, or handbook provision that has a “reasonable tendency to chill employees from exercising their Section 7 rights” may constitute an unfair labor practice in violation of the NLRA.

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Chicago has amended its “Ban the Box” Ordinance (the “Ordinance”) to further align with Illinois law. The Ordinance, which originally took effect in 2015, provides protections for both prospective and current employees. Historically, the Ordinance restricted when Chicago employers with fewer than 15 employees and certain public employers could inquire about or consider an individual’s criminal record or criminal history. The new amendments, which took immediate effect, expand application of the Ordinance to almost all Chicago employers and impose significant new assessment and notice requirements thereon. The amendments also expressly incorporate into the Ordinance provisions from the Illinois Human Rights Act (IHRA) that prohibit employers from inquiring about or considering an individual’s arrest record. The amendments did not modify the Ordinance’s penalties, however, so employers are still liable for fines of up to $1,000 per violation, license-related disciplinary actions, and potential discrimination charges before the Chicago Commission on Human Relations.

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With the final quarter of 2022 approaching, New York employers should be aware of the changes to the New York Paid Family Leave (“Paid Family Leave”) program set to take effect in 2023. Employers can expect an increase on the weekly benefits cap, as well as a decrease in the employee contribution rate.

Beginning in 2018 and increasing in benefits over the past few years, the Paid Family Leave program provides eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of job-protected, partially-paid time off to bond with a new child, care for a family member with a serious health condition, or to provide assistance when a family member is deployed abroad on active military service. As we previously reported, New York expanded the program’s definition of “family member” to include “siblings,” which will take effect on January 1, 2023. “Sibling” includes biological or adopted siblings, half-siblings, and step-siblings.

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New York recently updated two significant aspects of its Paid Family Leave program: (1) expanding the definition of “family member” to include siblings and (2) increasing the cap on weekly benefits available.

Since its inception in 2018, Paid Family Leave has offered eligible employees the ability to take  job protected, partially-paid time off to bond with a new child, care for a family member with a serious illness, or provide assistance when a family member is deployed abroad on active military duty. In 2020, after years of gradual increases in the maximum amount of leave and benefits, eligible employees may use up to 12 weeks of Paid Family Leave per rolling 52-week period.

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Earlier this year, the New York State Workers' Compensation Board adopted amendments to the regulations for the New York Paid Family Leave Benefits Law clarifying that when Paid Family Leave (PFL) is taken intermittently, the maximum number of intermittent leave days an employee may take is based on the average number of days the employee works per week.

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On December 22, 2021, the New York Department of Labor (“DOL”) adopted rules (“Rules”) implementing the state’s sick leave law (NY Labor Law §196-b, or the “Sick Leave Law”), providing long-awaited clarification of the Sick Leave Law, which went into effect over a year ago on September 30, 2020. The Rules, codified as Section 196 to Title 12 of the NYCRR, were proposed on December 9, 2020, and adopted without change. In addition to providing definitions of terms used in the Sick Leave Law, the Rules address three topics: (i) documentation an employer may require to verify an employee’s eligibility to use sick leave; (ii) how to count the number of employees an employer has for the purposes of determining employees’ sick leave entitlement; and (iii) how to calculate an employee’s accrual of sick leave. In addition, the DOL’s response to public comments it received after the Rule was proposed, explain how carryover of accrued unused sick leave works.

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The Westchester County Human Rights Commission (the “Commission”) has announced that the county’s Earned Sick Leave Law, which went into effect on April 10, 2019, has been preempted by New York’s Paid Sick Leave Law (“Law” or “PSLL”), which took effect on September 30, 2020. Westchester County’s law had required that eligible employees accrue one hour of sick time for every 30 hours worked, up to a maximum of 40 hours per year.

As we previously covered, the PSLL applies to all private employers and employees in New York State, and requires employers to provide up to 40 ...

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Proposed Paid Sick Leave Law Regulations

As we previously reported, New York State’s Paid Sick Leave Law (“PSLL”) went into effect on September 30, 2020. The PSLL requires all New York private employers to provide paid sick leave, which employees may begin using as of January 1, 2021. The amount of sick leave that employers must provide their employees annually depends on the employer’s size and income. On December 9, 2020, the NY Department of Labor published proposed regulations clarifying a number of issues relating to the PSLL as summarized below.

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