Yesterday the Second Circuit cast doubt on whether an arbitrator can certify a class that includes absent class members.  The court remanded for the district court to decide “whether the arbitrator exceeded her authority in certifying a class that contained absent class members who have not opted in.”  Jock v. Sterling Jewelers, Inc., No. 15-3947-cv (2d Cir. July 24, 2017).  The case poses potentially big implications for class arbitration’s ability to resolve cases with finality.

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This week the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court held that a fired medical marijuana user can pursue a disability discrimination claim against her former employer under the state’s anti-discrimination law. The decision is significant because it’s the first time a state’s highest court has recognized that the protections afforded under an anti-discrimination law extend to employees who use medicinal marijuana to treat disabilities.

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The Industrial Commission of Arizona’s (ICA) proposed rules under Arizona’s new paid sick time (PST) law incentivize employers to front load 40 hours of immediately-available PST or equivalent paid time off to each employee (24 hours for small employers). According to the ICA, employers who do that will be exempt from the PST law’s carryover and additional accrual requirements.

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The Industrial Commission of Arizona’s (ICA) proposed rules under Arizona’s new paid sick time (PST) law provide detailed guidance on how to calculate an employee’s “same hourly rate” for purposes of paying sick time, answering employer questions on how to calculate the rate for employees who earn wages based on something other than a straight hourly rate.

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During the 2016 general election, Arizona voters approved Proposition or “Prop” 206 by a wide margin. Prop 206 imposed two significant requirements on Arizona employers. First, it increased the state minimum wage as of January 1, 2017, with additional annual increases through 2020. Second, it mandated paid sick time (PST) for Arizona employees as of July 1, 2017.

Many of Prop 206’s PST provisions are susceptible to conflicting interpretations, making it difficult for employers to confidently implement sound PST policies and practices. Fortunately, the Industrial Commission of Arizona (ICA) – the agency responsible for implementing Prop 206 – has provided detailed guidance to help Arizona employers understand and comply with the law.


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With the exception of federal contractors, federal law does not require employers to give employees paid sick time (PST). However, state and local government entities across the US have begun adopting PST laws on a piecemeal basis. This state and local trend should be on every employer’s radar. The legal consequences for violations and noncompliance can be steep, and vary by location.

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