Browning-Ferris reversal calls end to uncertainty on joint employment

December 15, 2017 0 COMMENTS

Employers confused over what constitutes joint employment have seen the confusion largely cleared up, thanks to a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) decision issued December 14.

The 3-2 decision overrules the Browning-Ferris decision, which broadened what could be considered a joint employment relationship. Under the Browning-Ferris decision, employers that had indirect—even potential—unexercised control over employees of another employer could be considered joint employers. The party-line decision reinstates the old standard that was used for decades before the 2015 Browning-Ferris decision issued by the Obama-era NLRB.

“I think the most important aspect of the case is that it really ends the uncertainty and unpredictability that Browning-Ferris created because the prior decision never really gave anybody a clear understanding of indirect control,” Burton J. Fishman, an attorney with Fortney & Scott, LLC, in Washington, D.C., and a contributor to Federal Employment Law Insider, said of the new ruling.

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President Obama signs executive order raising federal contractor minimum wage to $10.10

January 28, 2014 0 COMMENTS

President Barack Obama has signed an executive order raising the minimum wage federal contractors must pay to $10.10 an hour.

The White House released a fact sheet ahead of the January 28 State of the Union speech saying Obama would use his executive authority to raise the minimum wage for those working on new federal contracts. The current federal minimum wage, in force since 2009, is $7.25 an hour.

The increase will cover employees such as janitors and construction workers as well as dishwashers and laundry workers on military bases. It will apply to contracts made after the effective date of the order, January 1, 2015.

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Obama to Appoint Controversial NLRB Nominee Craig Becker

March 29, 2010 0 COMMENTS

On March 27, President Barack Obama announced his intent to use his constitutional power to make appointments while Congress is in recess to appoint Democrat Craig Becker to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). This is the first time the President has used recess appointments.

Becker, a union attorney, has been a controversial nominee since he was first nominated, and in February, Senate Republicans used a filibuster to block his nomination. The business community and Republicans have been strongly opposed to his nomination, mainly because he has become associated with the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), a bill that would make it much easier for employees to form labor unions. Employer groups and Republicans have suggested that if Becker were nominated to the NLRB, he and a Democratic majority on the Board could implement provisions of EFCA, even if Congress failed to pass the bill.

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Employers May Be Eligible for Tax Break Under HIRE Act

March 24, 2010 13 COMMENTS

The Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act (H.R. 2847), a jobs bill President Barack Obama signed into law on March 18, 2010, provides tax breaks to employers that hire unemployed workers or individuals who were only working part-time in 2010. Under the HIRE Act, qualified employers could receive a payroll tax incentive and a general business tax credit.

Payroll Tax Incentive

Under the Act, employers that hire new employees this year may be exempt from paying the 6.2 percent social security tax on wages paid to qualified employees after March 18, 2010, through December 31, 2010. An employee is “qualified” if she:

  • starts work after February 3, 2010, and before January 1, 2011;
  • certifies in a signed affidavit that she hasn’t been employed for more than 40 hours during the previous 60-day period (the 60-day period ends on the date the employee starts work);
  • wasn’t hired to replace another employee unless the other employee voluntarily left the position or was terminated for cause; and
  • isn’t a family member or other relative of the employer.

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