Tag Archives: business

A Well Drafted Employee Arbitration Agreement Is Essential to Avoiding Costly Lawsuits

FLSA Lawsuits can cost employers significant amounts of money, both in defense costs and paying claims, however, there is a way to avoid these costly lawsuits. A well drafted arbitration agreement that covers actions brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and other state/federal laws, is essential to avoiding several kinds of lawsuits. An arbitration agreement is an agreement that your employees sign which obligates them to bring their issues to an arbitrator you select, rather than to court. Employees who represent Plaintiffs in FLSA, and other, cases, rarely wish to pursue any action that involves arbitration, because it requires a significant investment on the part of the attorney in a type of case usually taken on contingency. The significant investment comes in the form of a filing fee for the arbitration. A filing fee for arbitration can cost that attorney ten times what bringing a lawsuit costs, and most Plaintiff’s attorneys are hesitant to invest that type of money up front, especially because under a contingency agreement they are only paid if they win. It is rare to find a Plaintiff’s Lawyer who wants to bring any type of case to arbitration because of cost, but also because arbitrators picked by employers tend to favor employers. Courts will enforce arbitration clauses, especially in FLSA lawsuits, but they must be written properly, and written to cover actions properly brought under the FLSA. An insufficient arbitration agreement, or a poorly written arbitration agreement, may not be enforced by a court. For help in drafting a proper arbitration agreement that a court can uphold contact Joshua Sheskin at Lubell Rosen’s Broward County Headquarters. – By: Joshua H. Sheskin, Esq., 954-880-9500JHS@LubellRosen.com.

 

There are Complex Rules as to How to Pay Nannies and Housekeepers

Your nanny or housekeeper may feel like family but housekeepers and nannies the families that serve all the time, and these lawsuits can get far more expensive than other lawsuits brought by employees because of the number of hours involved. There are very specific rules as to how nannies and housekeepers are paid, and often they sue when their employers part ways with them, even after ten years, or more, in the home. Defending against lawsuits brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) I run into cases all the time when in which a nanny was with a family for twenty years, or more, and then shocks them with a lawsuit when she leaves.

You must pay some nannies and housekeepers overtime, and other nannies and housekeepers you do not need to pay overtime. A nanny or housekeeper must be paid minimum wage for all hours they work. However, which hours a live-in nanny or housekeeper must be paid is a question that strongly depends on what their duties are, and, physically, where they sleep. Furthermore, whether you can claim a credit for what you pay a nanny or housekeeper for room and board is a complex question of law that depends heavily on the circumstances. If you can take a credit towards what you pay your nanny or housekeeper, for room and board, the amount is a question of law that depends on numerous factors. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) has different regulations for live-in domestic employees than non-live in domestic employees. Contact Attorney Joshua Sheskin at the Broward County Headquarters of Lubell Rosen, at 954-880-9500 or JHS@LubellRosen.com, for help in paying your nanny or housekeeper in accordance with the law. – By Joshua H. Sheskin, Esq., 954-880-9500 – JHS@LubellRosen.com

Accommodating an Employee is Not Always Required Under the ADA and Other Federal Regulations

On Tuesday a Federal Court in New Jersey ruled that the Port Authority would not be subject to a lawsuit for discrimination based on their failure to accommodate a Jewish employee’s request not to work on the Sabbath and Jewish Holidays. This does not mean that employers are free to ignore an employee who asks for accommodations. Religious accommodations have different requirements based on what type of employer you are. Private employers face cases based on an employee’s religion infrequently by comparison to lawsuits filed for failure to accommodate an employee under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA).

In the instance of a failure to accommodate a disability, the same concept applies that caused the Court to dismiss the claim against the Port Authority. An employee must offer a reasonable accommodation to a disabled person under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), if they are capable of performing the essential functions of that job with the accommodation. However, when the accommodation would have a significant negative impact on other employees with the same job, violate rights granted to employees under a collective bargaining agreement, or change the nature of the job, the law does not always require the employer to accommodate the employee. When these exceptions apply is a complex legal issue and getting it wrong can mean significant legal liability. For help determining whether or not you must grant an employee an accommodation, under the ADA, call Attorney Joshua Sheskin at the Broward County Headquarters of Lubell Rosen. – By Joshua H. Sheskin, Esq., 954-880-9500JHS@LubellRosen.com

An Illegal Immigrant Can Sue Their Employer in Federal Court

One of the most common misconceptions that employers have is that illegal immigrants cannot sue their employers. Illegal immigrants can sue their employers in Federal Court for the non-payment of minimum wage, and overtime, pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Under the FLSA it does not matter whether someone is in the country illegally, nor will they be deported for filing a lawsuit. There are places in the country where an illegal immigrant cannot bring a Federal Lawsuit, but in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, and other states, an illegal immigrant can bring a lawsuit under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Employers have to pay all of their employees in accordance with Federal Regulations or risk an expensive lawsuit. – By Joshua H. Sheskin, Esq., 954-880-9500JHS@LubellRosen.com

Under Federal Labor Law Very Few Employees are Independent Contractors

The law does not give the option to employers to pay their employees as independent contractors by paying them via 1099 rather than W-2. For purposes of Federal Labor Laws, and the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), an independent contractor is a person who is not economically dependent on any one employer as a primary source of income. When you hire someone to paint your house you are hiring them as an independent contractor, but when you own a business and your employees depend on you to make a living you cannot hire them as independent contractors. This comes as a surprise to many business owners, and I defend businesses all of the time that make the mistake of classifying their employees as independent contractors. The line between independent contractor and employee can get fuzzy, even a part time employee with a second job may, or may not, be an independent contractor. Companies such as Grub Hub have come under fire, recently, for classifying their drivers as independent contractors. Do not risk misclassifying your employees, it can be a costly mistake. For advice as to whether your employees are independent contractors call, or email, attorney Joshua Sheskin of Lubell Rosen. – By Joshua H. Sheskin, Esq., 954-880-9500JHS@LubellRosen.com