Deciphering Trade Secrets: What Qualifies as Confidential Information in Your Business?

In the competitive business landscape, maintaining a competitive edge often hinges on safeguarding valuable assets. Among these assets are trade secrets – confidential information that provides a distinct advantage to companies. Understanding what constitutes a trade secret is paramount for businesses aiming to effectively protect and leverage these assets.  In this article, we’ll discuss trade…

How Does the New NLRB Rule Change on Joint Employers Impact Subcontractors

The New NLRB Ruling on Joint Employers for 2024 The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently finalized a significant rule change regarding the Standard for Determining Joint-Employer Status. Effective December 26, 2023, the new NLRB rule represents a seismic departure from previous standards, promising far-reaching implications for labor relations and legal obligations.  But what does…

A Renaissance for Private-Employer Unions – Real or Fake News?

Depending on where you get your news, you might think that unionization at private employers is experiencing a drastic rise.  Nearly every week, news articles highlight unionization efforts at high-profile companies like Starbucks, Amazon, and Mcdonald’s.  Despite being only three-quarters of the way into FY22, union election petitions for FY22 have already exceeded the total…

How to Handle Freedom of Speech at Work

The end of the current session of the United States Supreme Court has seen the Court issue rulings on many hot-button political topics including gun control, abortion, immigration, and environmental protection laws.  These rulings, along with the January 6th Commission’s ongoing public hearings, have created an environment of heightened political tension and stress.  While the…

When is Paid Sick Leave Coming to Maryland?

During the most recent legislative session, the Maryland General Assembly passed the Time to Care Act.  The big takeaway from the passage of this law: Maryland will, eventually, have a paid leave program for employees who need time off due to childbirth or serious health conditions.  Unfortunately, the coverage of the law’s passage has created…

Are Your Employees Ready to Go Back to “Normal”?

Across the country, government mask mandates are being lifted, students are attending schools without masks, and people are beginning to resume activities that were curtailed when the Omicron variant was spreading like wildfire only a few short weeks ago.  Many employers are watching these trends carefully as they make plans to resume, expand, or modify…

Is Hybrid Remote Work the New Normal?

When the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020, no one could have predicted the ongoing transformation it would have on our home and work lives. This transformation is particularly obvious in how we talk about remote work and how many companies have adapted to, and in some cases embraced, remote work.  Once a perk offered…

Recent Circuit Court Split Creates Confusion About Mealtime Pay

How do three Federal Circuit Courts of Appeals hear separate but factually identical cases, yet come to three distinct holdings? That is what happened recently when one set of facts with different plaintiffs was litigated in the Ninth, Fifth, and Eleventh Circuits. The result? A split in the circuits regarding when employers must pay for…

How Employers Can Help Ease Mental Health Issues Due to the Pandemic

As the pandemic creeps on into year three, many are noticing a significant deterioration in their mental health—either through an exacerbation of their existing mental health conditions or simply from exhaustion. Fortunately, all is not lost! There are several strategies that employers may implement to assist their employees through this difficult time, and some are…

UPDATE: COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates — OSHA’s Mandate Struck Down

On September 9, 2021, President Biden directed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to develop a rule to increase the number of workers who have received a COVID-19 vaccination.  Consistent with that direction, OSHA developed an Emergency Temporary Standard which would apply to employers with more than 100 employees.  On November 4, 2021, OSHA…