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December 2016 Archives

EEOC releases enforcement guidance for anti-discrimination laws

Most New York employers are subject to the provisions of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which among other things forbids workplace discrimination against members of protected classes. In November, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued a guidance on discrimination based upon national origin.

Wells Fargo employees file ERISA lawsuits

New York employees and customers of Wells Fargo Bank may be familiar with the controversy over the company's stock. It has been alleged that Wells Fargo used aggressive sales tactics to get customers to open accounts. As a result of the tactics, millions of unauthorized customer accounts were opened, and the bank's stock price was inflated. After the illegal sales processes were disclosed, the value of Wells Fargo shares fell by 12 to 15 percent.

New York grants unemployment to 2 Uber drivers

State regulators in New York have ruled that two former Uber drivers who were deactivated by the company are eligible for unemployment insurance. This indicates that the state is considering them employees and not contractors. Making its drivers contractors is a critical aspect of Uber's business model. It prevents the company from having to pay benefits, expenses or a guaranteed minimum wage.

Accusing disabled workers of theft

Most workers in New York and across the country who have disabilities are protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The purpose of the law is to prevent employment discrimination against people with disabilities and make sure that employers make reasonable accommodations for them. Two cases of alleged employee theft resulted in the employees receiving compensation after their employers were charged with violating the ADA.

EEOC takes broader view on retaliation than do the courts

When New York employees file a discrimination complaint or engages in another legally protected activity, their employers are prohibited from retaliating against him or her for doing so. Retaliation includes any adverse action that an employer takes in reaction to the person's engaging in the activity. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has updated its guidelines about retaliation.

Employees have rights under the law

Federal law requires New York employers to pay their employees for all time spent under the employer's control and while working in the employer's interests. This includes the time that the employee isn't performing job duties. Depending on the state, there may be exceptions to this rule, such as one unpaid meal break lasting at least 30 minutes during a six-hour shift.

English-only rules at work could expose employers to lawsuits

New York is home to many immigrants, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 bars employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of national origin. Discrimination, however, can take many forms, and English-only rules at workplaces represent one possible one.