Dept of Labor Expands Definition of Spouse

Under the provisions of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), since 1993, eligible employees have been allowed to take unpaid, job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons including to care for a spouse dealing with a medical issue.  Spouse now includes those in same-sex marriages. The change ostensibly stems from the Defense of Marriage…

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NLRB Sued Over “Ambush” Election Rule

More news this week regarding the NLRB and its pro-labor advocacy has the agency being sued by a number of national business groups over the agency’s recent passage of the so-called “ambush election” ruling.  The ruling will lower the threshold for union organizing efforts within private sector companies by streamlining the process required and dramatically…

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Court Strikes Dept of Labor OT Ruling

Although it clearly doesn’t impact the QSR industry, we’re certainly pleased to learn that a federal court in Washington DC has struck down portions of a ruling of the Department of Labor mandating minimum wages and overtime pay for certain home health companion workers employed by third party businesses.  The decision will hopefully serve to…

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The Flip Side of the Union Organizing Coin

Notwithstanding efforts by “zealous advocates for social change” and others around the country, we’re encouraged now and then to see public officials advocating a return to a freer economic market that can produce real economic benefits.  In that vein, so-called Right to Work legislation appears to be gaining ground in a couple of different states. …

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Right To Work Upheld in Indiana

In neighboring Indiana, the state Supreme Court has unanimously upheld the state right to work law, dealing a blow to organized labor, which had strongly opposed the law when it was passed in 2012.  Generally, Right to Work laws prohibit an employer from requiring union membership or requiring the payment of any monies (including union…

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Economy Showing Some Strength as US Adds 214,000 Jobs

There was more encouraging news on the economic front this week as the nation’s economy added 214,000 new jobs in the month of October – reportedly the ninth straight month of 200,000 plus new jobs.  At the same time, the Department of Labor reported last week that the nation’s unemployment rate in October fell to…

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Limiting your Legal Liability for Employee Compensation Claims

As a Dunkin’ Donuts franchisee, you and your labor lawyer should immediately audit your franchise’s compensation practices. Lawsuits for unpaid minimum and overtime wages are on the rise, and several Dunkin’ Donuts franchisees in the northeast have been the targets of lawsuits and Department of Labor investigations. In September 2014, a Dunkin’ Donuts franchisee near…

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Army and Air Force Exchange

No Relief On Military Bases

The question of increasing the minimum wage on military bases around the nation now appears to be firmly decided – against fast food businesses operating under a federal service contract.  The Department of Labor has rejected requests for an exemption from the increased federal minimum wage for QSRs operating on military bases and other government…

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Labor Secretary Perez Eyed For AG

Following along that same line of thought, we are quite concerned about the notion, raised in a number of circles, that Labor Secretary Tom Perez may be nominated by President Obama to replace outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder.  Perez has impeccable credentials as a union advocate, but not so much as an impartial enforcer of…

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Weil Confirmed as Director of Wage and Hour Division

In what is an egregious appointment for franchise owners and small businessmen and women throughout the country, Boston University business school professor David Weil was confirmed by the US Senate on April 28 as the Administrator of the US Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division.  Confirmed by a straight party line vote, Weil officially…

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