Recently, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) published its “Notice of Proposed Rulemaking; request for comments” in the Federal Register setting forth a proposed new standard for establishing a joint-employer relationship. The joint-employer analysis is significant because entities found to be joint employers may be jointly liable for alleged unfair labor practices or under collective bargaining agreements. In various circumstances, parent/subsidiary companies, franchisers/franchisees and client/temporary services providers have been argued to be joint employers. (more…)
By Erica Parks
September 30, 2018, was the cut-off for Governor Brown to sign or veto bills passed by the California legislature this year. So it’s not surprising that that the summer months saw a flurry of employment legislation across Governor Brown’s desk.
Most significantly, the Governor vetoed AB 3080, which, as we alerted you last month, would have effectively banned non-disclosure agreements and arbitration agreements with respect to certain harassment and discrimination claims. (more…)
At the end of the day on September 17, 2018, the U.S. Trade Representative issued notice that List 3 of the China tariffs has been finalized and takes effect with a 10% tariff on September 24, 2018. If “sufficient” progress is not made with the Chinese as defined by the Trump Administration, that tariff rate will rise to 25% on January 1, 2019. List 3 is the list containing products worth $200 billion.
AB 3080, a closely watched bill affecting the workplace, recently passed the Senate and now is awaiting the Governor’s final approval. A product of the “me too” movement, AB 3080 does a number of things that are intended to prohibit employers from limiting disclosure and discussion of alleged workplace harassment or discrimination, and to participate in harassment or discrimination investigations or proceedings. The provisions in AB 3080 appear primarily to be directed to “nondisclosure agreements” and to arbitration agreements, although neither type of agreement is expressly identified as such in the text of the bill. (more…)
The USCIS announced today that it is extending its ban on premium processing on certain H-1B petitions. Premium Processing allows an employer to seek an adjudication of a visa petition within 15 days upon payment of an additional filing fee, currently $1,225 (increasing to $1,410 on October 1, 2018). Employers should review their current and upcoming H-1B visa needs to determine how the ban will impact their matters, so they can plan accordingly.
To be specific, USCIS estimated earlier this year it would reinstate Premium Processing for H-1B cap cases in September 2018 (in roughly two weeks from now). The suspension of Premium Processing for Fiscal Year 2019 H-1B Cap Petitions is now expected to be extended through at least February 19, 2019. USCIS expects this suspension will help reduce the processing time for H-1Bs by allowing it to process long-pending petitions. In addition, USCIS states that the temporary suspension will allow them to be more responsive to petitions with time-sensitive start dates, as well as to prioritize adjudication of H-1B extension of status cases that are nearing their 240-day work authorization limit dates. (more…)
Last week, the President said that in his discussions with the business community on ways to improve the business ecosystem, one particular idea was raised as a means to bolster business: move to a six-month financial reporting calendar from the current quarterly one.
Now, there is an argument to be made for such a move. One could say this would help deter “short-termism,” seeing as how companies would no longer need to focus on meeting analyst expectations on a quarterly basis at the expense of longer term thinking (not to mention this would save businesses time and money). In addition, some executives view quarterly reporting as one of the hindrances to going public and/or maintaining public company status and, as a result, have already been advocating for changes to be made to the current reporting schedule. (more…)
On July 13, 2018, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) released seven new memos from its Division of Advice, which is part of the NLRB’s Office of the General Counsel. The memos resulted from requests for guidance by various NLRB Regional Directors on cases their offices were handling. The General Counsel’s office can release advice memos to the general public at its discretion after a case has been closed. The earliest of the seven memos was issued in 2014 and the latest is dated June 14, 2018. (more…)
In this video blog, MSK Partner & International Trade Practice Chair Susan Kohn Ross covers what’s new with the 301, including the tariff China has imposed on goods imported from the U.S., which product lists are at which stage, what is going on with List 3 in both countries, and other current events.
USTR Lighthizer yesterday published notice that the 25% tariff on goods appearing on List 2 will become effective on August 23, 2018. For those who wonder if filing comments makes a difference, the answer is yes! In his announcement, USTR Lighthizer made the point the list dropped from 284 to 279 tariff items based on testimony and comments which had been received. None of this, of course, helps those companies which are taking a serious financial hit from these tariffs, but then once the official notice is published in the Federal Register, an exclusion request will be included, and so companies should be gearing up to do two things: (more…)
Update on the China 301 List 3 Products
On August 1, 2018, USTR Lighthizer issued a press release indicating he was following through with President Trump’s direction and will consider raising the rate of duty from 10% to 25% on those products on the China 301 List 3. A formal notice in the Federal Register is expected soon.
Mr. Lighthizer also announced the written comment period is being extended to September 5, 2018, while the deadline to request to appear at the public hearing is changed to August 13, 2018. The hearing itself is still scheduled for August 20 to 23, 2018.
Then on August 2, there was a new publication which appeared on the USTR website. In it, USTR clarified the August 17, 2018 deadline for comments regarding products on the China 301 List 3 has also been extended to September 5, 2018. (more…)