New Illinois law bans noncompetition agreements for low-wage workers

by Steven L. Brenneman

The Illinois Freedom to Work Act, which will ban noncompetition agreements for low-wage private-sector employees, goes into effect on January 1.

The law defines a “low-wage employee” as an employee who earns the greater of the applicable federal, state, or local minimum wage or $13 per hour. Therefore, the law initially will apply to noncompetition agreements with employees earning $13 per hour or less.

The law defines “covenant not to compete” broadly to mean an agreement between an employer and a low-wage employee that restricts the employee from performing: read more…

Texas AFL-CIO seeks to join fight to save overtime rules

December 21, 2016 - by: Kate McGovern Tornone 0 COMMENTS

A group of labor organizations is attempting to save the new overtime rules from almost certain death under the Trump administration.

The Texas AFL-CIO on December 9 moved to join a lawsuit challenging the rules, saying that if the president-elect drops the government’s defense of the regulation as predicted, the union group will see it through.

Background

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California Equal Pay Act expansion takes effect January 1

by Cathleen S. Yonahara
Freeland Cooper & Foreman LLP

California’s equal pay law will provide protections for race and ethnicity as well as gender as of January 1, 2017.

Since 1949, California law has prohibited gender-based wage discrimination, and in 2015, that protection was expanded to require equal pay for men and women who perform “substantially similar” work for an employer regardless of their location and to place the burden of proof on the employer to demonstrate that any pay gap is due to nondiscriminatory factors.

Effective January 1, the law also will protect employees from disparities in pay based on ethnicity. The new prohibitions on wage differentials based on ethnicity track the prohibitions on wage differentials based on gender. The employer bears the burden of proving that a wage differential is based on: read more…

New law gives employees in Colorado access to personnel files

by Brad Williams

A new state law going into effect January 1 requires most private-sector employers in Colorado to allow employees to inspect and copy their personnel files at least annually upon request. The new law also grants former employees the right to inspect their personnel files once after the termination of their employment.

The law doesn’t require employers to create or keep personnel files for current or former employees. Also, employers aren’t required to retain any particular documents that are or were in an employee’s personnel file for any particular period of time. However, if a personnel file exists when an employee asks to inspect it, the employer must allow access.

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New York minimum wage going up on December 31

December 14, 2016 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

The first of a series of increases intended to bring New York’s state minimum wage to $15 an hour is set to go into effect on December 31.

As a result of a measure signed into law in April, the state will see minimum wage increases implemented on a regional basis. The state’s current basic minimum wage is $9 an hour.

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Categories: HR Hero Alerts / Minimum Wage / New York

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California’s minimum wage going up on January 1

December 12, 2016 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

The minimum wage in California will rise to $10.50 an hour on January 1 for most employers thanks to a measure signed into law in April. Future incremental increases will put the state’s minimum wage at $15 an hour by January 2022 for employers with 26 or more employees. Smaller employers will have more time to reach the eventual $15 level.

The current minimum wage in California is $10 an hour. Under the new law, employers with 26 or more employees will see the minimum wage go to $10.50 on January 1, 2017.

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New Tennessee law requires most employers to use E-Verify

by Todd Photopulos

A new Tennessee law taking effect January 1 requires employers in the state with at least 50 employees to use the federal E-Verify employment verification process.

The new requirement is a result of an amendment to the Tennessee Lawful Employment Act (TLEA). Under the old law, private-sector employers had a choice: either use E-Verify for all newly hired employees or request and maintain copies of identity and work authorization documents from all newly hired employees before letting them work.

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Changes coming to Delaware’s discrimination law

by Lauren E.M. Russell

Changes that will expand the Delaware Discrimination in Employment Act (DDEA) to include discrimination based on family responsibilities and reproductive health decisions are set to take effect on December 30.

Under the revised law, it will be unlawful for a covered Delaware employer to discriminate against employees because of their family responsibilities. “Family responsibilities” are defined as “the obligations of an employee to care for any family member who would qualify as a covered family member under the Family and Medical Leave Act [FMLA].”

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New California law mandates sexual harassment training for local officials

by Beth Kahn and Sigalit Shoghi
Morris Polich & Purdy LLP

Changes to California’s law requiring sexual harassment training for supervisory employees will go into effect on January 1, 2017, clearing up ambiguity about whether elected city officials are required to take sexual harassment prevention training and education courses already mandated for private-sector supervisors.

Assembly Bill 1661 requires that “local agency officials” (defined as any member of a local agency legislative body and any elected local agency official) receive sexual harassment prevention training and education if the local agency pays them any type of compensation, salary, or stipend.

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New Orleans restricts use of consumer credit checks

by H. Mark Adams

A new ordinance in New Orleans will prohibit contractors doing business with the city from using consumer credit background checks and consumer credit history in making new-hire and other employment decisions. The ordinance will affect new city contracts entered into on or after December 23.

Employees who perform fewer than 40 hours of work in a calendar year in New Orleans under a city contract aren’t covered by the new ordinance, which includes exceptions for employees in sensitive positions such as: read more…

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