Sexual harassment and discrimination in tech start-ups is now being reported in the media. Described as a “bro culture” or “frat house” atmosphere, the behavior and conduct of many employees crosses the line from inappropriate conduct to illegal conduct. In many instances, the company founders participate or turn a blind eye to it. In a . . . → Read More: Sexual Harassment and Discrimination in Tech Start-ups
A car dealership has settled a sexual harassment lawsuit for over $2 million. Male employees claimed that the former male lot manager sexually harassed male employees for over ten years. The conduct included sexual comments, inappropriate grabbing and touching of male employees and frequent solicitations for oral sex. Over 50 male employees were subjected to . . . → Read More: Sexual Harassment at Car Dealership
A Peabody cleaning contractor, Ward’s Cleaning Service, Inc. must pay its workers $1 million in back pay and damages. The company illegally asked employees to use multiple time cards with different names, changed time cards, paid employees with checks made out to false names and paid employees in cash.
Companies trying to avoid paying overtime . . . → Read More: Cleaning Company Ordered to Pay Overtime to Workers
Estate Planning Matters
You know you need a will. You’ve managed to put estate planning off for years. Not because it wasn’t important, but other things were your priority. Like getting the kids to soccer practice. Or making it to work on time.
When is it a good time to talk to a Massachusetts . . . → Read More: Why You Need a Will: Ten Great Reasons
Historically, state and federal non-discrimination laws have not afforded protection to lesbian, gay and transgender individuals in the workplace. In recent years, however, more and more states have passed laws prohibiting such discrimination the workplace. As a recent Washington Post article reports, only 21 states and the District of Columbia have laws that prohibit discrimination . . . → Read More: Lesbian, Gay, and Transgender Discrimination in the Workplace
A Severance Agreement is usually drafted in the company’s favor. The agreements and releases in it are not typically for the benefit of both sides. What are some of the mistakes employees often make when handed an agreement? Here are the top ten severance don’ts:
1. Do not sign an agreement without fully understanding it. . . . → Read More: Top Ten Severance Agreement Don’ts
Both Federal and Massachusetts laws provide women with job leave rights when they give birth or adopt a child. A bill recently filed in the Massachusetts legislature proposes amending state law to give men paternity leave rights. This would bring Massachusetts more in line with federal law on family leave, which is gender neutral.
. . . → Read More: Family Leave Requirements under Massachusetts and Federal Law
The Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law makes it very difficult for companies to hire independent contractors. There is a three part test that most companies can’t meet. The company must show:
1. The individual is free from direction and control;
2. The service is performed outside the usual course of the company’s business; and
3. The . . . → Read More: Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law
Massachusetts has very strict laws that protect employees from sexual harassment by supervisors or managers. An employer may be held responsible when a supervisor sexually harasses an employee. The company can be held responsible even if others in management didn’t know what was happening.
The United States Supreme Court recently held that a supervisor is . . . → Read More: Sexual Harassment by Supervisors in Massachusetts
Massachusetts law forbids sexual harassment in the workplace. Sexual harassment is either “Quid pro quo” sexual harassment or hostile environment sexual harassment. Quid pro quo is a latin term that means “this for that.” This type of sexual harassment occurs when an employer or manager gives a promotion or demotion or otherwise changes the terms . . . → Read More: Sexual Harassment in the Massachusetts Workplace