Why the “Speak Out Act” is More Like a Whisper

On December 7, 2022, Congress passed the “Speak Out Act” (the “Act”), which codified into federal law limits on what types of information employers are allowed to include in nondisclosure or non-disparagement clauses. Specifically, under the Act, employers are now prohibited from requiring employees to sign pre-dispute agreements that contain nondisclosure clauses or non-disparagement clauses …

Employers – Post the New EEOC Poster in Your Workplace (It is REQUIRED)

On October 20, 2022, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) released a new workplace poster titled: “Know Your Rights: Workplace Discrimination is Illegal.” According to the EEOC, covered employers* must post this poster within the workplace going forward. Those who do not comply may be subject to fines for noncompliance. The law currently requires covered …

#MeToo 5 Years Later – How The States Took Over the Narrative

Although the COVID-19 pandemic has occupied a preeminent place in all of our minds for the past two years, it was not that long ago that the #MeToo movement swept the nation, forcing employers and employees to examine new—yet somehow also old—issues of discrimination, retaliation, and harassment in the workplace. From a cultural standpoint, #MeToo …

UPDATED FEDERAL FORMS PART 2: I-9 Identification Documents Must Be Unexpired

The Federal Government has updated some of its standard forms employers are probably used to seeing. Last week, we discussed the EEOC’s addition of a gender marker option to its voluntary self-identification process and passport applications. This week, we will discuss the changes to Form I-9. Federal law requires that every employer who recruits, refers …

Why President Biden’s Plan to Vaccinate the Unvaccinated in Private Employment is a Lot of Buzz, but Likely Little Sting

The entire country has been abuzz about President Biden’s Plan for “Vaccinating the Unvaccinated.” The Plan would require private employers with 100 or more employees (“Covered Employers”) to ensure their workers are vaccinated from COVID-19 or tested weekly and to provide paid time off for employees to get vaccinated.[1] To execute this Plan, the Department …

Loaded Questions: Are Noncompetition and Nonsolicitation Clauses Really Enforceable in Michigan?

As an employment lawyer, there are a number of questions I frequently hear from clients and colleagues. One of the most common ones is, “I thought noncompetes weren’t really enforceable. Is that true?” This question takes many forms. For example: Employer Client: “I don’t want to prevent someone from working, so I just have my …

The DOL to Bring Back the 80/20 Rule for Tipped Employees with an Additional 30-Minute Rule

In an effort to “undo” the Department of Labor’s (“DOL”) actions under the Trump administration, on June 23, 2021, the agency published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NPRM”), revising how it will regulate the minimum wage pay of tipped employees. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), employers must pay non-exempt hourly employees a minimum …

The Legal Issues Involved in Implementing a Metrics-Driven Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Program

For many employers, diversity, equity, and inclusion (“DEI”) programs are no longer mere “add-ons” to existing human resources initiatives—they are essential to conducting business in the current climate.  The events of summer 2020, including the incidents and protests involving George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, Elijah McClain, Jacob Blake, and others, have refocused …

What the American Rescue Plan Means for Employers

The American Rescue Plan (ARP) provides $1.9 trillion dollars in economic stimulus for individuals, certain companies, and municipalities. This blog focuses specifically on what the ARP means for employers. First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) As of January 1, 2021, employers who were originally covered under the FFCRA (employers with fewer than 500 employees) were no …