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Sexual Harassment Claims End Bill O’Reilly’s Career at Fox News

Multiple women over more than 2 decades have accused Bill O’Reilly of sexual harassment at work.  The host of the O’Reilly factor – the hit Fox News prime-time show – has paid millions of dollars in settlement funds to women and has confidentiality agreements to keep the women from sharing their stories.

Ultimately, scandal after scandal Fox News had enough and decided to terminate Bill O’Reilly despite recently renewing his contract for 20 million dollars per year and being the network’s top talent.  O’Reilly stands to get a year’s worth of pay for his departure.

The Rupert Murdoch and sons – (Fox News owners) are veering the network in a new direction after parting ways with long time head Roger Ailes and and  O’Reilly amidst other sexual harassment allegations.

The  sudden departures of long time employees like O’Reilly and Ailes stem from a workplace apparently rampant with sexual harassment.

Fox News wanted to distance themselves from any liability and has severed ties with their star of over 20 years.

Gender equality and sexual harassment are issues that all people should pay attention to at the workplace.

A source close to the scandal said that “O’Reilly would have been fired years ago if it was someone else.”

Sexual harassment, discrimination and retaliation based upon reporting sexual harassment are illegal under state and federal law. If sexual harassment is occurring to you or someone you know report it and contact an employment attorney to help you better deal with the situation.  Workplace inequality and  asexually charged work atmosphere are unacceptable and should not be tolerated in 2017.

 

United Airlines Makes Room for Employees and Drags Doctor off Plane

Passenger brutally dragged off United flight from Chicago, IL, to Louisville, KY, to make room for employees.

Despite the harsh nature of the passenger’s treatment United acted legally and within the law, the controversy here is on the airlines response and justification of its actions.  Public outcry and support for the airline has been widespread.

The main question is should employees take precedent ofver customers.  Perhaps in some circumstances where here it was apparent that if one of its employees could not operate another flight in the near future the great harm would be to the business, not one customer.  Here, the airline’s response initially and after the incident was shocking and outrageous.  The passenger was “belligerent” says Oscar Munoz, United CEO, in a letter to employees shortly after the April 10, 2017

United’s CEO Oscar Munoz justifying the heartless reaction – said that “we need to get facts and circumstances” and that  “our initial responsefell short of expressing how were feeling”.

According to Gov. Chris Christie -United Airlines runs 80% of flight traffic out of Newark International Airport.  United Airlines seeks to put employees in front of other customers at almost any expense.   Later footage shows the Doctor saying that he wants to go home and to “just kill me” — thats how many feel with United in control of most flights at Newark International airport.

Passengers say United  initially offered $US400 and then $US800 in vouchers and a hotel stay for volunteers to give up their seats – yet no one budged.

 

This is what ensued.

Judge Neil Gorsuch sworn in as newest Justice of the SCOTUS

Justice Gorsuch brings balance to the Supreme Court and restores it to 9 justices.  Justice Neil Gorsuch sworn in on April 10, 2017 to the SCOTUS.

President Trump’s biggest accomplishment of his first one hundred days is by far having his pick for the Supreme Court of the United States, Judge Neil Gorsuch of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals approved and sworn in.  Gorsuch fills a vacancy left open by the sudden passing of the late conservative justice, the great Antonin Scalia.  Gorsuch looks to adjudicate several high-profile cases on a docket that is sure to be full of interesting cases that affect millions of Americans.

Gorsuch, 49, is the youngest Justice on the court and looks on the bench for decades to come.

 

Speculation now swirls about the possibility of another Trump appointment to the Supreme Court.  Justice Kennedy (above) is 80 and may step aside during the current administration.  There is always the possibility of other Justices like Ruth Bader Ginsburg seat becoming vacant in the near future.  Constitutional conservatives and Americans of all walks of of political life will now await and see what Judge Gorsuch’s putative Supreme Court jurisprudence will be like.    How will he rule on important issues facing Americans, in employment, health care, regulations, environmental protections, religious liberties, gun-control, abortion, individual privacy rights and net neutrality to name a few.   We can only wait and see what happens under the new SCOTUS.

Alex Acosta to lead U.S. Department of Labor

  President  Trump picks Alex Acosta for labor department.

After President Tump’s first DOL pick Andrew Pudzer withdrew his nomination – the GOP President nominated current FIU Law School Dean – Alex Acosta on February 16, 2017.  Acosta will be the new Secretary for the Department of Labor, for the Trump Administration – pending his senate confirmation hearings which he is expected to be confirmed by the GOP majorities in the house and senate. 

Acosta is the son of Cuban exiles who emigrated to the U.S. after the Communist Revolution in Cuba.

Acosta will be Trump’s first Hispanic pick for a Cabinet level secretary.

Acosta was appointed to the NLRB (National Labor Relations Board)  during his time as a US attorney under President George W. Bush in 2008

Prior to his work with the NLRB he worked as a Civil Rights Attorney for the Justice Department during the George W. Bush’s  administration as an assistant attorney general in the Civil Rights Division from 2003 to 2005.

The United States Department of Labor – Are  changes coming to US Labor Policy under new conservative leadership?

A conservative to lead the United States Department of Labor – will the Labor policies reflect that?

Are regulations going to be slashed as promised?

What will replace the old regulations ? If any thing at all?

For every one new regulation introduced, two old regulations must be eliminated, says the Trump Administration.  Are these policies beneficial to the American people?

If Acosta can bring common sense reform and allow businesses to grow and treat employees with a baseline of respect and follow and enforce existing laws while slashing costly, burdensome, unnecessary and ineffective regulations Acosta may be able to lead reform at the DOL; setting an example for states and local jurisdictions alike to reform labor laws where it makes sense to do so.

Senator Marco Rubio Approves Alex Acosta’s Nomination.

“I know Alex Acosta well, and he is a phenomenal choice to lead the Department of Labor,” Rubio said. “Whether it was his distinguished service as U.S. attorney in Florida’s Southern District or as dean of Florida International University’s school of law, Alex has succeeded in all endeavors he has taken on, and managing the Department of Labor will be no different. I look forward to his confirmation hearing, where I’m confident he will impress my colleagues and secure the support necessary to be the next secretary of labor.”

 Acosta has received many awaards for his work -Acosta has twice been named one of the nation’s 50 most influential Hispanics by Hispanic Business Magazine.

What Should Be in Your Pay Stub New York? Wage Statements New York Labor Law 195-3.

Wage Statements NYLL 195-3. Deductions, Rate of Pay, Hours Worked, Overtime Rate – these are all things that employees should know about how the y should be paid.  New York Employers Must Comply with New York Labor Law 195-3. Sometimes employees pay employees in cash – leading to difficulties understanding how they are paid.  Tipped workers and some hourly workers see that their pay stub is “off” or there is a problem.  Most employees may not realize that they might not be getting paid the right way.  Often employees see that their pay stub does not reflect what they feel they are owed.

Employees should complain to their employers and notify them that they think there is a problem with their pay stub or ask your employer to provide you with a pay stub. Do not fear your employer – its OK to complain about your pay stub. Retaliation is unlawful – if you complain about your pay stub face adverse employment action from your employer.

Take a look at this sample pay stub on the NYS Dept. of Labor’s website:

If Your Pay Stub Not Look Like This in New York, Contact an Employment Lawyer today!

New York Employees: Did you receive your Wage Notice?

New York’s Wage Notice and Statement Conundrum.  Employers in NY must comply with New York Labor Laws 195-1.

Contact an Employment Attorney if you did not receive your wage notice.

When you get hired, get a raise or a pay cut your employer in New York must give you a wage notice.  In NY some employers fail to provide employees with a wage notice. Like this:NY Labor Law Sec 195. But fail to do so.  The notice Labor Law Section 195(1) Notice and Acknowledgement of Wage Rate and Designated Payday Hourly Rate Plus Overtime is easily accessible online – but some employers do not even bother to comply with the law.

The Wage Theft Prevention Act (WTPA) took effect on April 9, 2011. The law requires employers to give written notice of wage rates to each new hire. The notice must include: Rate or rates of pay, including overtime rate of pay among other things.  NYLL 195 (1). The law mandates that the notice be in the employee’s language and must comply with the format as proscribed by the NY DOL

“General Statement Regarding Overtime Pay in New York: Almost all employees in New York must be paid overtime wages of 1½ times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked over 40 per workweek. A very limited number of specific categories of employees are covered by overtime at a lower overtime rate or not at all.” an excerpt from NY DOL form 195-1 notice.


“For each week an employee works, the payroll records must contain: − Hours worked (regular and overtime) − Rate or rates of pay (regular/overtime) − How the employee is paid – by the hour, shift, day, week, commission, etc. − Pay at the piece rate must show what rates apply and the number of pieces at each rate − Employee’s gross and net wages − Itemized deductions − Itemized allowances and credits claimed by the employer, if any (tip, meal and lodging allowances or credits)”P715NYLL(publication NYS Dept. Labor).

If your employer or job has not given you your Wage Notice consult with an a employment attorney today.

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Supreme Court of the United States back to Status Quo with Hobby Lobby Judge

The Judge in the Majority 10th Circuit Opinion Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. is now the in line to fill the late great Antonin Scalia’s empty seat on the nation’s high court.  Judge Gorsuch, 49, is a Colorado native and conservative jurist with admiration and respect from both sides of the aisle in Washington D.C.

Now the Court will be at “balance” with four conservative and liberal justices respective and one swing justices (Kennedy).   At this point Judge Gorsuch is likely to be confirmed notwithstanding fierce opposition from house and senate democrats seeking to undermine President Trump’s appointments.  Judge Gorsuch is know for following the law and applying the law regardless of ideology or predisposition.  In his acceptance speech at the White House standing beside his wife, Gorsuch explained to the American people that a judge is “bad” when he or she agrees with all of the cases in which the render opinions.  Grosuch applies natural law and freedom and liberty to his Conservative opinions.  Gorsuch’s appointment may render the Court in a more favorable position for individual liberties and the rule of law.  Gorsuch may have plans on overturning “Chevron” deference – the so called “administrative agency deference in the law – where courts side with the agency on its ruling.

President Trump Nominates 10th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Neal Gorsuch to Supreme Court of the United States on January 31, 2017.

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Employment Law Trends for 2017

An Improved Economy will help Employees in the United States.  Employers are positioned for growth in 2017, as hiring expands and new infrastructure deals create construction jobs.  Employment services like payroll, accounting, human resources and legal will be in great need in 2017 for employers.  Regulators and compliance professionals will have a busy year in 2017 with changing law and regulations.

Employees are in a good position for job growth in expanding sectors and wage growth steady with the increase in inflation as the economy grows. As automation and technology increase efficiency employees see challenges in ever evolving industries.

President Trump’s new labor secretary pick fast –food CEO Andrew Puzder,  is the chief executive of the company with thousands of employees and may implement new strategies in office.  The new U.S. Labor Secretary is a critic of increase in the minimum wage for fastfood workers and the fight for $15.00/hour minimum wage.

According recent interviews Puzder said that increased automation could be a welcome development because machines were “always polite, they always upsell, they never take a vacation, they never show up late, there’s never a slip-and-fall or an age, sex or race discrimination case.” (N.Y. Times).

New Laws for 2017  nyctlaw.com’s  Law Blog takes a look  at trends  for 2017: Employees and Employers may have questions in 2017.

Federal regulators in may relax regulations to allow for rapid job growth and business expansion.  Opponents the new President’s plans fear that a change in the law will disproportionately affect low wage employees are at the highest risk.

 

President Trump May Cancel Obama’s Executive Labor Orders

Labor Protections imposed by Obama on Federal Contractors for Thousands of U.S. Employees May Be at Risk

  • Employers doing business with the federal government must comply with Obama’s standing executive orders.  President Trump may overturn labor policies by executive order.
  • Among the thousands of new regulations since 2008 – Obama’s expansive labor executive orders may be over for thousands of workers.
  • President Trump may strike Obama’s orders on federal contractors and other area like employers doing business with the federal government.

President Trump may Cancel Former President Obama’s Executive Orders on Labor and Employment.

 

A list below of Obama’s executive orders that may be cancelled:

  • Executive Order 13672, July 21, 2014, “prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity”
  • Executive Order 13693, March 19, 2015, “to maintain Federal leadership in sustainability and greenhouse gas emission reductions”
  • Executive Order 13706, Sept. 7, 2015, “establishing paid sick leave for federal contractors.”
  • Executive Order 13627, Sept. 25, 2012, “strengthening protections against trafficking in persons in federal contracts”
  • Executive Order 13658, Feb. 12, 2014, establishing a $10.10 hourly minimum wage for contractors and allowing for annual increases.
  • Executive Order 13494 Jan. 30, 2009, disallowing “certain costs that are not directly related to the contractors’ provision of goods and services”
  • Executive Order 13495, Jan. 30, 2009, protecting the employment of contract employees when a “follow-on contract” succeeds one that expired
  • Executive Order 13502, Feb. 6, 2009, encouraging executive agencies to consider “project labor agreements in connection with large-scale construction projects in order to promote economy and efficiency in Federal procurement.”
  • Executive Order 13665, April 8, 2014, prohibiting retaliation against any contract employee or applicant who “has inquired about, discussed, or disclosed the compensation of the employee or applicant or another employee or applicant.”
  • Executive Order 13673, July 31, 2014, the Fair Pay and Safe Workplace directive “to require prospective federal contractors to disclose labor law violations and give agencies guidance on how to consider labor violations when awarding federal contracts”

 

Know Your Rights – Consult with an Employment Attorney.

 

Contact Berlingieri Law, PLLC – Today.

Pay Day for US Auto Workers Sharing Profits

Employees at Ford, Fiat Chrysler and GM over 96,000 union members stand to earn thousands next month in profit share bonuses.

Employees Profit Share at Top U.S. Auto Makers. As North American Auto Sales Increase – Employees See Benefit.

Profit sharing is a creative way to increase employee productivity and pay employees based upon their hard work and performance of the company. 

Employees at the top United States Auto Manufactures like Ford and General Motors seek to reap the benefits of profit sharing in 2017.  Under some CBA contracts (UAW)  –  union employees stand to make $9,000.00 or more in profit shares.  This indicates growth of U.S. auto makers and compensation plans that provide employees with incentive to perform well because they too reap[t the benefits of the company’s profits