Recent Blog Posts

  • Five things employers should know about Ohio BWC dividends By Victoria Hanohano-Hong    In response to a request from Gov. Mike DeWine, the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) has issued $5 billion in dividends to eligible private and public employers. This was the third round of BWC dividends issued to lessen the burdens of COVID-19 on Ohio employers. We’ve answered the five most common questions on the issuance. How much was the dividend? Dividends for eligible private and public employers were equal to 372% of billed premiums for the period of June 1,... More
  • If the bear is poked, best to be prepared: OSHA and the pandemic By Mike Underwood    The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has been criticized by some for its response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Some labor unions and other interest groups have been vocal about what they perceive as insufficient action by OSHA to address COVID-19-related workplace hazards. The most recent criticism has come from within the federal government. In January 2021, President Joe Biden issued an executive order directing OSHA to ramp up its enforcement efforts related to COVID-19 and to consider... More
  • State law may impact employer vaccine policies By Arslan Sheikh    Employers considering whether to adopt a mandatory vaccine policy should be alert to recently-enacted and pending legislation regulating workplace vaccine policies in certain states. As we reported last month, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued guidance for employers to consider before adopting a mandatory vaccine policy. The EEOC takes the position that employers may implement a mandatory vaccine policy as long as the policy allows for exceptions to provide a reasonable accommodation if the employee has a... More
  • The American Rescue Plan Act: What employers need to know By Jyllian Bradshaw    On March 11, 2021, President Joseph Biden signed The American Rescue Plan Act, which provides $1.9 trillion in funds for individuals and businesses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. For employers, here are the key provisions to be aware of: FFCRA tax credit extension Since January 2021, employers subject to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) have not been required to provide FFCRA leave to employees; however, employers who opt to voluntarily provide FFCRA leave to employees can obtain... More
  • Biden administration DOL proposes rescinding Trump-era joint employer and independent contractor rules By Abbie Thederahn    On March 11, 2021, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced two Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to rescind the previous administration’s joint employer and independent contractor rules. Joint employer rule The first NPRM proposes rescinding the joint employer rule. Joint employers can be held jointly and severally liable for wage and hour claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The Trump-era joint employer rule significantly modified the DOL’s interpretation of joint employer status by adopting a four-factor test to... More
  • The Garden State legalizes marijuana By Arslan Sheikh    New Jersey just became the fourteenth state to legalize off-duty, recreational marijuana use. Gov. Phil Murphy signed the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement Assistance and Marketplace Modernization Act (NJCREAMMA) into law, which broadly prohibits employers from taking adverse action against individuals for off-duty, recreational marijuana use. The law includes many protections for employers that are concerned about employee marijuana use. Employers may still maintain drug- and alcohol-free workplaces. Moreover, employers are not required to permit or accommodate employees who... More
  • EEOC releases fiscal year 2020 charge and litigation data: Retaliation claims continue to dominate By Jourdan Day    The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently released its fiscal year 2020 statistics of charges filed and resolved on behalf of charging parties. There were 67,448 charges filed in fiscal year 2020, a reduction from the previous year and the lowest number of charges filed since at least 1992. While part of this drop may be explained by the COVID-19 pandemic, there has also been a decrease in charges filed each year since 2016. The EEOC recovered $439.2 million... More
  • Biden administration expected to make major changes to labor and employment landscape By Arslan Sheikh    Since the presidential inauguration, many employers have been wondering what changes President Joe Biden’s administration will make in the world of labor and employment law. This blog post summarizes a few key changes the Biden administration has already made, as well as a few changes the administration will likely make in the coming months. Key changes Biden appoints new general counsel to the National Labor Relations Board Last month, President Biden terminated the appointment of Peter Robb, the General Counsel... More
  • EEOC proposes new wellness program rules under the ADA and GINA which may limit employers’ efforts to incentivize COVID-19 vaccination By Abbie Thederahn    The attorneys behind the Employer Law Report Blog present the final part of our three-part series on the COVID-19 vaccine and employer considerations. On Jan. 7, 2021, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) proposed new rules that would apply to employer wellness programs under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA). Some commentators have suggested that these rules may affect employers who plan to offer an incentive to encourage employees to receive... More
  • Vaccine policies and workers’ compensation By Rebecca Kopp Levine    The attorneys behind the Employer Law Report Blog present the second blog in our three-part series on the COVID-19 vaccine and employer considerations. The COVID-19 vaccination process has begun in the U.S., but at this point, the COVID-19 vaccine is not widely available to most employees. As explored in Part 1 of our series on the COVID-19 vaccine, many employers are deciding whether to require or incentivize their employees to obtain the vaccination. In addition to the issues... More