Posts from January 2022.

Within the last week, the State of Illinois issued two new workplace posters and the District of Columbia issued a revised COVID-19 poster.  The State of Minnesota and the State of Colorado also updated their legislation on pregnancy accommodations and sentencing reform, respectively.

All posters are required postings and must be displayed in the workplace—including, to the extent applicable, employees’ remote workplaces.

ILLINOIS

The Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) has issued the following posters:

This poster details the ...

Despite the ever increasing concerns over privacy and data breaches, both externally and internally, it may become more difficult for employers to legally protect their confidential and proprietary information. As explained in our November 8, 2021 article, “Employers’ Rights Under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) Narrowed after Supreme Court Decision in Van Buren,” the United States Supreme Court significantly narrowed the interpretation of the CFAA and therewith employers’ means of seeking remedies for the misuse of confidential data. In essence, the Court ...

If you’re wondering what to do in the wake of the United States Supreme Court’s decision striking down the OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard mandating COVID-19 vaccination and testing, you’re not alone. Unfortunately, there is no short answer for many employers – it largely depends on your industry, and where you’re located. 

First and foremost, you need to verify that you are not subject to any other COVID-19 vaccination mandates. Employers in the health care industry that fall under the reach of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), for ...

On December 7, 2021, we brought to you the news that U.S. District Court Judge R. Stan Baker in the Southern District of Georgia put a nationwide halt on the federal contractor vaccination mandate. On January 21, 2022 Judge Jeffrey V. Brown of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas agreed with Judge Baker. The judge opined that this case was not about the importance of being vaccinated or not, because the judge agreed it was important that everyone should get vaccinated.  “It is instead about whether the President can, with the stroke of a pen and without the input of ...

As of January 2022, the State of California and the State of Oregon have issued new workplace posters and updated certification forms related to various labor laws. The materials addressed below are mandatory postings for all employers, whether that be in the workplace or provided in employee handbooks. Businesses that fail to comply may be subject to fines or sanctions.

CALIFORNIA

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) has issued multiple new posters and certification forms in connection with the expansion of the California Family Rights Act (CFRA) and ...

Signed into law on October 7, 2021 by California Governor Gavin Newsom and effective January 1, 2022, the “Silenced No More Act” amends and expands the previous Stand Together Against Non-Disclosures (STAND) Act. 

The STAND Act was passed in 2018 in the wake of the #MeToo movement and focused specifically on claims of sexual harassment and discrimination or retaliation based on sex.  The new law goes beyond the STAND Act’s focus on sex discrimination and harassment, and expands its protections to any characteristic protected under California law. For example, this would ...

President Biden announced on January 10th that the Biden-Harris Administration is requiring insurance companies and group health plans to cover the cost of over-the-counter (OTC), at-home COVID-19 tests. Beginning January 15, 2022, individuals with private health insurance coverage or covered by a group health plan who purchase an over-the-counter COVID-19 diagnostic test authorized, cleared, or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will be able to have those test costs covered by their plan or insurance. Insurance companies and health plans are ...

Ending months of uncertainty, today the Supreme Court issued its decision allowing CMS to enforce its vaccine mandate for healthcare workers. The Court’s decision stays the injunctions entered by federal courts in Missouri and Louisiana. CMS may now enforce the rule nationwide. Before today’s decision, the CMS rule could only be enforced in 26 states. 

As a refresher on what the CMS rule requires, see our previous summary of the rule. Further guidance should be issued by CMS before compliance is required. We will continue to keep you updated.

In another opinion issued ...

In a 6-3 decision just released, the Supreme Court blocked OSHA’s Emergency COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Standard (“ETS”) from taking effect, which required employers with one hundred or more employees to conduct weekly testing of all unvaccinated employees, amongst other things. 

While procedurally, the ruling merely reinstituted the stay of the ETS, the ruling signaled the final outcome for the ETS, finding more broadly that the ETS went beyond OSHA’s authority. The Court stated: “[a]lthough Congress has indisputably given OSHA the power to regulate ...

On January 6, 2022, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) released a signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) detailing the agencies’ most recent pact to enforce federal labor and employment laws.

The partnership intends to ensure that workers receive proper wages and are able to take collective action to improve working conditions without fear of retaliation. The MOU outlines several procedures on information-sharing, joint investigations and enforcement activity, and training meant to strengthen the agencies’ ...

With the New Year upon us, it is time to begin the initial H-1B process for any interested companies or organizations with foreign workers. Now is the time to see if anyone will need assistance with an H-1B petition. 

In 2019, USCIS implemented a new electronic registration system for employers seeking to file H-1B cap-subject petitions for foreign national employees. Last year, the registration period for foreign nationals ran from March 9 to March 25, 2021. We anticipate a similar timeframe this year. Once the registration period is over, the US Citizenship and Immigration ...

Welcome to the Labor and Employment Law Update where attorneys from SmithAmundsen blog about management side labor and employment issues. 

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