Since President Obama was elected, a number of laws have been enacted and legislative initiatives undertaken that affect the workplace. In most cases, the rights and protections of employees have been expanded while new requirements have been created for employers. At Shellist Lazarz Slobin LLP, our employment law attorneys work closely with employers and employees in advising them of their rights and prerogatives under these new employment laws.
If you own a company and have questions about compliance issues-or if you are an employee and would like more information about your rights-contact the law office of Shellist Lazarz Slobin LLP today. We are experienced, knowledgeable, and dedicated to our clients. We invite you to schedule an appointment with a Houston employment law attorney from our team and learn how we can help you.
The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act was signed into law by President Obama in January of 2009. Under the Lilly Ledbetter Act, the statute of limitations on cases involving workplace discrimination was extended to May 28th of 2007. Now, employees who were victims of discrimination have more time to prepare and present their cases.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 introduced changes to the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) and whistleblower protections. Under the ARRA, employers must now pay 65% of COBRA premiums for employees who have been let go from their jobs. Employers can recover some or all of these costs through withholding and FICA tax credits. How companies choose to handle COBRA benefits, especially in the case of domestic partners, will affect how much they pay and how much they can recover.
In regard to whistleblowers, the ARRA extends whistleblower protections to employees who notify a supervisor or company representative regarding illegal activity, fraud, safety violations, or public health issues. Additionally, the ARRA reduces the burden of proof for whistleblowers to demonstrate retaliation on the part of their employer. Now, a whistleblower need only prove that his or her harassment or unequal treatment was a function of their status as a whistleblower.
While the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) (H.R. 1409, S. 560) is still being considered by Congress, if passed it would affect how workers unionize. Essentially, the EFCA affects how union cards are used and blocks employers from using a secret ballot election. The EFCA would also require binding arbitration in cases where employers and unions have reached an impasse in contact negotiations. The EFCA also directly affects the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and imposes serious penalties on employers who interfere with the rights and prerogatives of the NLRB.
Employment laws change and evolve. In order to ensure your company is in compliance with new requirements, contact our employment law attorneys today to schedule an appointment and learn how we can help you "stay ahead of the curve."
Speak with a Houston employment law attorney from our office at (713) 352-3433. Se habla español.