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New FTC Ban on Noncompete Provisions Cause Concern and are Under Challenge

Friday, April 26th, 2024

On April 23, 2024, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) passed a new rule banning all new noncompete clauses with all levels of employees.  The rule as passed will allow only existing noncompete agreements with certain senior executives to survive. The rule defines such senior executives as individuals in a policy-making position earning a minimum of $151,164 per year. All other existing noncompete agreements will be unenforceable as of the effective date. The new rule is to become effective 120 days after publication in the Federal Register.

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The New York Pay Transparency Act is Now in Effect

Thursday, September 28th, 2023

Earlier this month, the New York Pay Transparency Act went into effect. If you own or run a business with four or more employees in the State of New York, you must include a compensation range for all job openings, promotions, and transfers. 

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Employers Now Have a Much Heavier Burden in Proving “Undue Hardship” Related to Employee Requests for Religious Accommodation

Saturday, July 8th, 2023

On June 29, 2023, the Supreme Court of the United States issued a decision titled Groff v. DeJoy, which imposes a new, increased burden on employers who receive a request to accommodate an employee’s religious beliefs. The standard is no longer whether the request would impose more than a “de minimis” cost on the employer, but whether the employer would have to incur a “substantial” increased cost.

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New York Lawmakers Add to the Uncertainty About the Future of Non-Compete Agreements

Tuesday, June 27th, 2023

New York State lawmakers have passed a bill that, if signed into law by Governor Hochul, will ban non-compete agreements and provisions in New York State. This adds to the uncertainty about the future of non-compete agreements created by the pending FTC proposal to ban all non-competes, which has been delayed by the tens of thousands of comments received during the comment period. All of this leaves employers unsure on how to move forward on restrictive covenants.

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Employers: Update Your Sexual Harassment Policies and Training Materials to Comport with New York State’s New Models

Wednesday, April 12th, 2023

On April 12, 2023, the New York State Department of Labor posted new guidance and its updated Model Policy on Sexual Harassment Prevention and training materials. 

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Effective Immediately: New York State Will Now Require Employers to Provide Electronic Versions of all Mandatory Workplace Postings

Thursday, December 22nd, 2022

On December 16, 2022, New York State amended New York Labor Law Section 201 to require employers to make mandatory workplace postings available to applicants and employees electronically. This means that in addition to posting physical notices, digital versions of the federal and state notices must also be made available through the employer’s website or by email.

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Member Joseph Brown Featured in Buffalo Business First Article

Friday, May 6th, 2022

On Thursday, May 5, 2022, Labor & Employment Member Joseph S. Brown was featured in Buffalo Business First regarding the employee monitoring law that is taking effect this week in New York State.

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The Time Has Come: New York Electronic Monitoring Notice Law to Take Effect May 7, 2022

Wednesday, May 4th, 2022

In November 2021, New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed legislation amending the state civil rights law to add a new provision requiring private employers with a place of business in New York who engage in electronic monitoring to notify workers of electronic monitoring of telephone, email, and internet access and usage. This law goes into effect on May 7, 2022.

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Update on OSHA’s COVID-19 Mandate: What New York Employers Need to Know

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2021

Labor & Employment attorney Joseph S. Brown provides an update on the OSHA COVID-19 mandate and what this means for New York private employers with one hundred or more employees. 

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PFL Amendments Expand Definition of Family Member and Offer Clarification on Intermittent Leave

Tuesday, December 21st, 2021

Employers have been complying with New York State’s Paid Family Leave Act (“PFL”) since 2018.  PFL mandates time off for employees to care for family members with serious health conditions, among other reasons.  Last month, Governor Hochul enacted an amendment to PFL, to expand the definition of covered family members. Labor and Employment attorney Katherine L. Wood expands on this.

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OSHA Unveils COVID-19 Rule For Private-Sector Workers: What your business needs to know

Thursday, November 11th, 2021

On November 4, 2021, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) issued a new Emergency Temporary Standard (“ETS”) “intended to establish minimum vaccination, vaccination verification, face covering, and testing requirements to address the grave danger of COVID-19 in the workplace.” 

Employment and Business litigator Joseph S. Brown provides an overview of the basics of the ETS, an update on legal challenges to the rule, and what employers can do now to prepare.

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NYS Department of Labor Issues FAQs on Employment Issues Related to Recreational Cannabis Use

Tuesday, October 26th, 2021

Attorney Joe Brown summarizes the key takeaways from the recent FAQ document released by the New York State Department of Labor on cannabis and the workplace.  

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EEOC Releases Guidance on COVID Vaccine Mandates and Employer Incentives

Monday, October 25th, 2021

New guidance released by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) on October 13, 2021, discusses vaccine mandates and employer incentives for vaccination.  The new guidance also discusses employer requests for vaccine confirmation and confidentiality of employees’ vaccine information. Attorney Katherine L. Wood advises on this guidance.

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NY HERO ACT UPDATE: COVID-19 Designation Extended to October 31, 2021, New Guidance and Updated Model Plans

Friday, October 8th, 2021

The Commissioner of Health has extended the designation of COVID-19 as a highly contagious communicable disease that presents a serious risk of harm to the public health under the New York Health and Essential Rights (“HERO”) Act until October 31, 2021. The New York State Department of Labor released updated Information & FAQs on the HERO Act and updated the Model Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Plan.  This alert summarizes these recent developments.

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Joseph Brown Featured in Buffalo Business First Article on Mental Health in the Workplace

Tuesday, September 28th, 2021

Labor and Employment Member Joseph S. Brown, Esq. was featured in an interview with Buffalo Business First for his input on various labor employment law scenarios related to mental health in the workplace.

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Telework as a Reasonable Accommodation During COVID: EEOC Takes a Stance

Friday, September 24th, 2021

Determining whether to grant a particular accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) can be a tricky area for employers to navigate.  Adding COVID-19 considerations to the discussion has complicated matters even further.  Labor and employment attorney Katherine L. Wood examines a recent lawsuit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) that should be taken into consideration when analyzing whether to grant or deny telework accommodations.

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President Biden Proposes New Federal Rule to Require Businesses with 100+ Employees to Mandate Vaccinations

Friday, September 10th, 2021

On September 9, 2021, the White House issued Path Out of the Pandemic: President Biden’s COVID-19 Action Plan.  The Plan sets forth a six-pronged approach aimed at reducing “the number of unvaccinated Americans by using regulatory powers and other actions to substantially increase the number of Americans covered by vaccination requirements.” Attorney Joseph Brown discusses how this plan may affect employers in the coming weeks.

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HERO ACT UPDATE: What New York Employers Need to Know About Implementing Their Workplace Safety Plans

Tuesday, September 7th, 2021

Labor & Employment attorney Joseph S. Brown offers insight on what New York employers need to know about implementing their workplace safety plans.

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Mondaq: "The Age-Old Argument Of Who Qualifies As An Independent Contractor"

Tuesday, August 17th, 2021

Hurwitz & Fine Labor and Employement Chair Ann E. Evanko and Law Clerk Evan Gestwick were recently published in Mondaq, a syndication platform that provides content and insights from professional service firms.

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