On January 3, a bill (S2589) was introduced in the Senate which would amend current provisions of N.J.S.A. 43:21-5 (New Jersey’s Unemployment Compensation Law) regarding disqualification from unemployment insurance (UI) benefits for misconduct by claimants. The bill would retain the provisions of P.L. 2010, ch. 37 (discussed in the December 2010 and July 2010 issues of the New Jersey eAuthority) that would completely bar UI benefits in cases of “severe misconduct” by claimants and would increase the periods of disqualification for “simple misconduct.” However, the bill would amend the law to clearly define “simple misconduct” and “severe misconduct.” In addition, the bill would add language to the statute that would place the burden of proof on the employer to show that employee actions constitute misconduct and would likewise require that employers provide written documentation to support assertions of misconduct.
It’s one of those days. An envelope containing a charge from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) arrives on your desk. The charging party is a recently departed employee, and it’s the company’s first notice of the complaint. The former employee checked the harassment box (but no others), alleging that she had been sexually harassed by a supervisor on two occasions. There is no mention of witnesses and it seems as if it could be an isolated matter. Will the EEOC agree?
Los Angeles is once again in the spotlight as it implements changes in its laws that will impact many of its employers and their employees beginning July 1, 2016. On June 1, 2016, the City Council passed the Los Angeles Minimum Wage Ordinance (No. 184320), adopting both new minimum wage rules and paid sick leave benefits applicable to all employees who perform at least two hours of work in a particular week within the geographic boundaries of the City of Los Angeles.
On July 15, 2015, the New Jersey Supreme Court held that the protections of the Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA) extend to so-called “watchdog” employees—those employees whose regular job duties involve monitoring compliance. In Lippman v. Ethicon (A-65/66-13, July 15, 2015), the court rejected the defendants’ argument that watchdog employees must be acting outside of