The United States Supreme Court is currently considering two cases concerning whether race-conscious admissions programs are permissible under federal law. While these cases are limited to the relatively narrow universe of college admissions, the Court’s decision may be instructive to private employers and will likely have implications beyond the classroom.

Continue Reading Could the Supreme Court’s Decision in the Harvard and UNC Cases Indirectly Affect Corporate Diversity Initiatives?

As economists argue whether a recession is on the horizon, some employers may begin to prepare to cut expenditures, including through a reduction in force. While not necessary under most state laws, many employers opt to provide severance to employees they choose to lay off. This severance is usually provided by way of a separation agreement in exchange for the employee’s agreement not to bring certain claims against the employer, among other things. As employers begin determining whether they will undergo a reduction in force, they should ensure their separation agreements adhere to applicable state laws.

Continue Reading Considering a Reduction in Force? Time to Revise Your Separation Agreement Template

On July 27, 2022, Mayor Muriel Bowser signed into law the Non-Compete Clarification Amendment Act of 2022, scaling back certain aspects of D.C.’s original Ban on Non-Compete Agreements Amendment Act of 2020. As we previously reported, the original ban included some of the most substantial non-compete restrictions in the country, including prohibiting the use of non-compete agreements for nearly all employees working in D.C. and banning anti-moonlighting policies. Here are some key takeaways from the Amendment:

Continue Reading The District of Columbia Revises Ban on Non-Competes

On June 13, 2022, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held in Johnson v. WinCo Foods Holdings, Inc, et al. that class members who were not yet employed by WinCo were not entitled to compensation for the time required to take a pre-employment drug test, nor was WinCo required to cover the travel expenses associated with undergoing the test.

Continue Reading Time Is Not Always Money: Ninth Circuit Holds That Pre-Employment Drug Testing Is Not Compensable Under California Law

On May 12, 2022, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) issued guidance addressing the application of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) to employers utilizing software, algorithms, and artificial intelligence in hiring and employment decisions.  Produced in connection with the EEOC’s launch of its Initiative on Artificial Intelligence and Algorithmic Fairness in October 2021, the EEOC’s latest guidance reflects its goal of ensuring that employers utilizing technology in hiring and employment decisions are complying with federal civil rights laws.  Notably, the guidance was issued a few days after the EEOC filed a complaint against a software company alleging age discrimination, potentially signaling similar actions related to the use of artificial intelligence in the employment context.  Below are some key takeaways on the new guidance.

Continue Reading EEOC Issues Guidance Regarding How Employer Software and Artificial Intelligence May Discriminate Against Individuals With Disabilities

UPDATE: Mayor Adams signed Int. 134 into law on May 12, 2022.  It is currently effective.

On April 28, 2022, the New York City Council (the “Council”) passed Int. 134, an amendment to New York City’s Salary Transparency Law (the “Salary Transparency Law” or “STL”) that finalized a number of significant changes to its requirements.  As we previously reported, the Council has been considering Int. 134 in various forms since March 24, 2022.  The original version of Int. 134, which provided more significant protections for employers, failed to gain traction.  Following discussions with pay equity advocates and the small business community, Int. 134’s sponsors announced modifications to Int. 134 designed to represent a compromise proposal.  That version of Int. 134 passed, and will be effective immediately if signed by Mayor Eric Adams.
Continue Reading UPDATED: New York City Council Approves Amendments to Salary Transparency Law; New Date for Compliance Now November 1, Among Other Changes

On March 22, 2022, the New York City Commission on Human Rights (the “Commission”) issued its first round of guidance regarding the salary transparency law (the “Salary Transparency Law” or “STL”) currently scheduled to take effect on May 15, 2022.  As we previously reported, the Law will amend the New York City Human Rights Law (“NYCHRL”) to require all New York City employers to state the minimum and maximum salary associated with an advertised internal or external “job, promotion, or transfer opportunity.”
Continue Reading New York City Issues First Round of Guidance Regarding Salary Transparency Law

On March 24, 2022, New York City Council members Nantasha M. Williams and Justin L. Brannan introduced Int. 134, a bill that would alter New York City’s impending pay transparency law.  As we previously reported, beginning on May 15, 2022, all New York City employers must state the minimum and maximum salary associated with an advertised “job, promotion, or transfer opportunity,” both internally and externally (the “NYC Pay Transparency Law” or the “Law”).  Int. 134 proposes certain alterations and clarifications to the NYC Pay Transparency Law that may affect employers’ compliance measures.
Continue Reading New York City Council Proposes Amendment to Pay Transparency Law

The federal government became the most recent employer to adopt a “Ban the Box” policy when The Fair Chance to Compete for Jobs Act became effective December 20, 2021. The law prohibits federal contractors and most federal agencies from inquiring into an applicant’s criminal history—including arrests and convictions—prior to making a conditional job offer. Therefore, federal contractors should review their applications and hiring practices to ensure they are complying with the recently-enacted law.
Continue Reading Ban the Box: Federal Government Adopts Fair Hiring Practice

On December 15, 2021, the New York City Council passed Int. 1208-2018 (“Int. 1208-2018”), a pay transparency bill with significant implications for employers in New York City.  Mayor Eric Adams subsequently took no action with respect to Int. 1208-2018 after its passage, and the bill accordingly became law on January 15, 2022.  Int. 1208-2018 takes effect on May 15, 2022.

Continue Reading New York City Employers Must Include Salary Ranges in Job Postings Beginning May 15, 2022

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (“DFEH”) recently announced a new effort to identify and correct violations of the Fair Chance Act.  The Fair Chance Act, which was enacted in January 2018 and is commonly known as California’s “ban-the-box” law, amended the Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”) to prohibit employers with five or more employees from directly or indirectly inquiring into, seeking the disclosure of, or considering an applicant’s conviction history (including questions on a job application) until after the applicant receives a conditional offer of employment.  We previously summarized employers’ obligations under the Fair Chance Act here.
Continue Reading The Department of Fair Employment and Housing Ramps Up Enforcement of California’s “Ban-the-Box” Law