Dykema Gossett PLLC

Dykema Labor & Employment Law Blog

Dykema Labor & Employment Law Blog

Contributors

Michigan Issues Emergency COVID-19 Workplace Safety Rules With Immediate Effect

The Emergency Rules Were Issued In Response to the Michigan Supreme Court’s Decision Invalidating Governor Whitmer’s Executive Orders

The Michigan Supreme Court’s decision that Governor Whitmer lacked the power to extend her declaration of emergency past April 30, 2020 resulted in the invalidation of numerous emergency orders, including those that imposed specific obligations upon employers to provide workplaces safe from potential coronavirus exposure. To fill that gap, on Wednesday, October 14, the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity issued emergency rules under the state Administrative Procedures Act that impose several requirements upon employers in the state of Michigan. Those rules, which are issued under Michigan’s Occupational Safety and Health Act, are effective immediately and remain in effect for six months. Read More ›

California Expands Workplace Protections Related to COVID-19 by Enacting Two Statutes Regarding Notice Requirements and Workers’ Compensation Coverage

On September 17, 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom signed two bills that expanded worker protections related to COVID-19. AB 685 imposes reporting requirements related to when employees are exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace. SB 1159 codifies Governor Newsom’s Executive Order providing workers’ compensation insurance coverage to employees who test positive for COVID-19 in connection with their employment between March 19 and July 5, 2020, and creating a new framework for workers’ compensation coverage for employees who test positive for COVID-19 after July 5, 2020. Read More ›

To Be or Not to Be (An Independent Contractor): DOL Seeks to Clarify Independent Contractor Test in Landmark Proposed Rule

On September 22, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its first-ever proposed rule outlining a test for when a worker is an employee or independent contractor under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  Read More ›

10 Things You Should Know About the EEOC’s COVID-19 Guidance

The EEOC has been regularly updating its Technical Assistance Questions and Answers entitled “What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws.” This guidance is only valid during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, and was most recently updated on September 8, 2020. While the full guidance is worth a thorough read by HR professionals and attorneys, the following summarizes ten key highlights from the EEOC’s guidance:  Read More ›

California Expands Coronavirus Paid Sick Leave with the Enactment of AB 1867

The federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”) generally requires employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide up to 80 hours of paid sick leave to eligible employees for qualifying reasons related to COVID-19. On September 9, 2020, California’s Governor Newsom signed AB 1867. This law expands access to paid sick leave (“Coronavirus PSL”) to California workers employed by entities with 500 or more employees in the United States. Read More ›

U.S. Department of Labor Issues Revised Regulations Implementing FFCRA Leaves Following New York Court’s Decision

We reported last month on a decision by a New York federal court that rejected portions of the Department of Labor regulations implementing the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”) leaves signed into law earlier this year. The FFCRA created rights for employees of employers with fewer than 500 employees, and all public employers, to take up to 10 days of paid sick leave under the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (“EPSLA”) for various COVID-19 related reasons, and another 10 weeks of paid leave under the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (“EFMLEA”) for leaves necessitated by COVID-19 related school and day care closures. The court held that the following FFCRA rules were improper: Read More ›

What Employers Need to Know About Michigan’s Latest Executive Order Protecting Workers

On August 27, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer released Executive Order 2020-172, entitled “Protecting workers who stay home, stay safe when they or their close contacts are sick,” which replaces Executive Order 2020-166. The new executive order is nearly identical to the one it replaces, with two important differences. First, the new order recognizes that an employee’s symptoms could be explained by other medical conditions, which should not prevent an employee from reporting to work. Second, the new order recognizes that an employee should not be required to stay home simply because he or she displays one of the more innocuous symptoms of COVID-19 on its own. Read More ›

Working Hard for The Money: Department of Labor Issues Guidance on Tracking and Paying for Remote Work Hours

On August 24th, the Department of Labor issued a Field Assistance Bulletin ("FAB"), available at https://www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/files/WHD/legacy/files/fab_2020_5.pdf, regarding “Employers’ obligation to exercise reasonable diligence in tracking teleworking employees' hours of work." While FABs are not  legally binding authority, they provide guidance on the WHD’s enforcement positions and policies. This recent FAB is useful in suggesting best practices for those charged with ensuring that employees are paid for all hours worked—a task that has been made much more difficult by the current remote work environment. Read More ›

Are Parts of Paid COVID-19 Leave Regulations in Jeopardy? Federal Court Rejects Parts DOL’s FFCRA Regulations, Employers Brace for Possible Fallout

On Monday, August 3, 2020, a New York federal judge issued a decision invalidating portions of the DOL’s regulations implementing the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act (“FFCRA”). The decision’s impact changes the legal landscape employers confront as they strive to comply with the FFCRA—a landscape that is unstable as the DOL and the courts sort out the legality of the disputed regulations. Read More ›

National “Strike for Black Lives” Planned for Monday, July 20

Will your employees be walking off the job on Monday?

A few unions (primarily the SEIU) and a coalition of social justice advocacy groups (primarily the Movement for Black Lives) are encouraging workers to engage in a nationwide job walk-off for eight minutes and 46 seconds this coming Monday, July 20th. It appears that longer, more formal protests will also be held that day. The action is referred to as a “Strike for Black Lives,” but coalition members are also advocating for a $15 minimum wage. Read More ›