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Employment

  • July 16, 2018

    Ex-Jawbone Workers Deny Swiping Trade Secrets For Fitbit

    Six former employees of Jawbone pled not guilty Monday in California federal court to allegations they stole trade secrets from the now-defunct fitness device maker and took them to rival Fitbit Inc., criminal charges that carry possible sentences of 10 years or more in prison.

  • July 16, 2018

    AT&T Unit Can't Force Arbitration Without Affirmative Consent

    A New Jersey federal judge on Monday knocked down an AT&T unit’s lawsuit seeking to force arbitration of an assistant store manager’s discrimination claims, finding the company's arbitration agreement to be unenforceable, because the employee acknowledged reviewing the document but did not affirmatively agree to its terms.

  • July 16, 2018

    NHL Gains Upper Hand In Concussion Litigation

    A Minnesota federal judge on Friday blocked former National Hockey League players from bringing as a class action claims that the league ignored scientific evidence that head trauma in sports can cause long-term brain diseases, dealing a major blow to the players and potentially to other athletes bringing similar claims against their former leagues.

  • July 16, 2018

    Delivery Co. Fights Couriers' Suit Seeking Fees As Tips

    A courier service that uses a mobile app to pair bicyclists and drivers with people who request a delivery argued Monday that its workers operate under federal, not Massachusetts, labor laws and must lose their class action seeking a piece of the company’s delivery fees.

  • July 16, 2018

    Ex-Apple Engineer Denies Stealing Self-Driving Car IP

    A former Apple employee accused of illegally downloading the tech giant's proprietary information related to self-driving cars before taking a job with a Chinese self-driving car company pled not guilty in California federal court Monday to trade secret theft.

  • July 16, 2018

    Calif. Judge Clears $1M EEOC Deal In Disability Bias Row

    A California federal judge on Friday signed off on a $1 million deal between the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and HVAC component manufacturer Mueller Industries Inc. to end a suit alleging the company’s attendance and leave policies discriminated against workers with disabilities.

  • July 16, 2018

    NJ Panel Backs School Surveillance System, Union's Rights

    The New Jersey state appeals court on Monday found safety reasons justified a school board’s unilateral implementation of an audio-video surveillance system, but said the board still had a duty to consider making changes to address a teachers union’s privacy concerns.

  • July 16, 2018

    DOL Moves To Clarify Employee Test For Home Care Workers

    The U.S. Department of Labor unveiled a new set of guidelines Friday for agency investigators to use when determining whether certain home care providers, like nurses and health aides, are employed by so-called registries that connect them with people who need their services or if they are independent contractors instead.

  • July 16, 2018

    Whistleblower Attys Get $4M In Fees In Humana FCA Suit

    A Florida federal judge on Friday adopted a magistrate judge's recommendation to award a whistleblower more than $4 million in litigation expenses for a closely watched False Claims Act case that resulted in a $3 million settlement with Humana, a South Florida health care provider and its owner over alleged Medicare Part C fraud.

  • July 16, 2018

    11th Circ. Reverses VA's Quick Win In Pharmacist's Suit

    An Eleventh Circuit panel on Monday revived a pharmacist’s Title VII gender discrimination claim against the Department of Veterans Affairs because a trial court applied too strict a test but reluctantly affirmed judgment tossing her age bias and retaliation claims.

  • July 16, 2018

    CFTC Gives 1st Overseas Whistleblower Award

    The U.S. Commodity Futures Exchange Commission has awarded a whistleblower bounty to a foreign resident for the first time, the agency announced on Monday, days after handing out its largest award to date.

  • July 16, 2018

    Baker McKenzie Adds Littler Mendelson Employment Duo

    A pair of Littler Mendelson PC litigators, who have represented management at major technology giants and retailers in high-profile putative class actions, have joined Baker McKenzie's employment and compensation practice in San Francisco, the firm announced recently.

  • July 16, 2018

    Pa. Justices Will Hear GNC’s Appeal In Overtime Case

    The Pennsylvania Supreme Court agreed on Monday to mull a $1.7 million class action award against General Nutrition Centers Inc. over its alleged obligation under state wage law to pay store managers time-and-a-half for overtime hours.

  • July 16, 2018

    Ex-King & Spalding Atty's Counsel Seeks Exit Over Unpaid Bill

    An ex-King & Spalding LLP associate who says he was fired for reporting ethical red flags about partners in a case involving ZTE Corp. is refusing to pay his legal bills, his lawyer told a New York federal court on Friday.

  • July 16, 2018

    9th Circ. Revives Part Of Driver's Suit Over Alcohol Firing

    The Ninth Circuit on Friday revived part of a delivery driver’s claim that the home furnishing company he worked for illegally fired him for drinking on his own time, but also let stand a lower court’s decision to toss his claim that he was retaliated against for having filed a workers’ compensation claim.

  • July 16, 2018

    8th Circ. Reverses Mo. Quarry Owner's Dangerous Ledge Fine

    The Eighth Circuit on Monday reversed a Mine Safety and Health Administration citation against the owner of a limestone quarry in Missouri, saying that there was insufficient evidence to support its conclusion that the company violated a rule requiring protective equipment for miners working near a ledge.

  • July 16, 2018

    GE Beats Welder's Suit Over Radiation Exposure At Plants

    General Electric Co. had no responsibility to protect a welder who worked at nuclear power plants from dangerous levels of radiation because the federal regulations that set an exposure limit only apply to the licensees of the plants, an Illinois federal judge said in dismissing the welder’s suit.

  • July 16, 2018

    Executive Order Boosts Fears Of Politically Influenced ALJs

    An executive order signed last week by President Donald Trump eliminating the competitive examination and selection procedures for appointing administrative law judges has heightened concerns that both the ALJ hiring process and decisions made by the judges will be unduly influenced by politics, legal experts said Monday.

  • July 16, 2018

    Pioneering Judges Keep A Closer Eye On Class Action Deals

    In a nascent trend that could impact a range of class actions in the employment, securities, consumer protection and product liability spheres, some diligent judges are beginning to track settlements after granting final approval — adding a so-called third phase of review to ensure class members get the relief they are due.

  • July 16, 2018

    Walmart Cashiers' Seating Suit In Calif. Sent To Trial

    A suit seeking to make Walmart let a class of 80,000 cashiers in the Golden State sit on stools will go to trial this fall after a California federal judge dismissed dueling motions for judgment, ruling that a jury should decide whether the workers should have seats.

Expert Analysis

  • Modern Communication Brings E-Discovery Challenges

    Thomas Bonk

    As new communications platforms displace email, the legal industry is awkwardly grappling with complex e-discovery questions. Fortunately, this environment provides a very fertile ground of incentives for innovation in both e-discovery technology and service offerings, says Thomas Bonk of Epiq.

  • Opinion

    Conservative Supreme Court Activism Risks Backlash

    Jahan Sagafi

    As the Senate considers Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, including his potential impact on legal protections for workers, it is useful to reflect on the court’s 5-4 anti-worker decisions of the last term — each of which broke with norms of judicial restraint, say Michael Scimone and Jahan Sagafi of Outten & Golden LLP.

  • Opinion

    It's Not All About The Benjamins, Baby (Lawyer)

    J.B. Heaton

    Notwithstanding the latest salary war among prominent law firms, I urge my middle-aged and older colleagues to help the recent graduates we know focus on the long term. Even if the salary is the same, there is a big difference between an institutional firm and the relatively younger firms matching BigLaw, says J.B. Heaton, a University of Chicago business law fellow and former partner at Bartlit Beck.

  • Employers Must Respond To Weingarten Rights Expansion

    Douglas Darch

    In Circus Circus, the National Labor Relations Board overturned nearly 40 years of precedent in shifting the burden of contacting and obtaining a union representative onto employers when they interview employees suspected of misconduct. Employers should err on the side of caution and extend union representation whenever Weingarten rights may be triggered, says Douglas Darch of Baker & McKenzie LLP.

  • Series

    Judging A Book: Hood Reviews 'Lawyering From The Inside Out'

    Judge Denise Hood

    Law professor Nathalie Martin's new book, "Lawyering From the Inside Out: Learning Professional Development Through Mindfulness and Emotional Intelligence," can be of value to any lawyer aiming to achieve greater productivity, relieve the stress of the legal profession and focus on goals, says U.S. District Chief Judge Denise Page Hood of the Eastern District of Michigan.

  • Too Much Employer Stock? Don't Ignore Diversification

    Mark Poerio

    Despite recent warnings of the risks associated with executives feeling overly invested in their employer’s stock, some board members and compensation committees still turn a deaf ear to stock diversification programs that seem at odds with the idea of aligning executive interests with those of shareholders. Sometimes, however, the pendulum swings too far, says Mark Poerio of Wagner Law Group.

  • Drafting M&A No-Poach Provisions Amid Regulatory Scrutiny

    Thomas Fina

    Agreements regarding soliciting and hiring employees of competitors have become an enforcement priority for U.S. antitrust authorities, so M&A parties should take a fresh look at how they approach the issue. A carefully tailored no-poach provision will help protect against regulatory inquiry, say attorneys with Baker Botts LLP.

  • An Update On Anti-Poach Enforcement And Class Actions

    Robin van der Meulen

    In recent years, no-poach agreements have become subject to close scrutiny both by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division and private class action plaintiffs. These cases show that violations of federal antitrust laws can have an immediate and real impact on ordinary people and their livelihoods, say Robin van der Meulen and Brian Morrison of Labaton Sucharow LLP.

  • All Unions Likely To Feel The Impact Of Janus V. AFSCME

    Joseph Gross

    While the high court's decision in Janus v. AFSCME issued a direct and devastating hit to public-sector unions, it's effects are likely to be far reaching. Unions representing both private- and public-sector employees, as well as union funding of political causes, will feel the blow, say Joseph Gross and Adam Primm of Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff.

  • 3 Top E-Discovery Case Law Lessons Of 2018 (So Far)

    Casey Sullivan

    The blockbuster e-discovery cases, with big sanctions and bigger controversies, have been few and far between this year. But that doesn’t mean the legal questions around e-discovery have been answered. Let’s take a closer look at three cases worthy of our attention, says Casey Sullivan, an attorney at discovery technology provider Logikcull.