Articles

New meaning to the Equal Pay Act’s promise of pay equity

“Pay equity” is quickly becoming a term every employer must understand. Never in its 25-year history have the principles of the Equal Pay Act (EPA) received so much attention. Courts have been examining the meaning of pay equity under the EPA, and legislatures are expanding the reach of pay equity and limiting employer inquiries into…

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‘Highly compensated exemption’ not as simple as it sounds

Theoretically, the highly compensated exemption should simplify an employer’s Fair Labor Standards Act classification inquiry. After all, if an employee meets the highly compensated monetary threshold, that employee must only meet one duties test, right? No so fast, friend. Let’s take a trip back in time to the Obama administration in 2016. The revisions to…

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Minimizing liability for overpayment, underpayment of wages

Overpayment of wages is more common than you may think. For example, inadvertent overpayment may occur in the context of processing new hire, promotion or revised benefit election paperwork. Regardless of the reason, employers must address overpayment in a very specific manner. The federal Fair Labor Standards Act does not address the actual payment of…

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Oklahoma transgender employee seeks reinstatement

In November we alerted employers that an Oklahoma City federal court jury awarded Rachel Tudor, a transgender employee, $1.165 million in her discrimination, retaliation and hostile work environment lawsuit against Southeastern Oklahoma State University (SEOSU). Since that time, at least three other federal appeals courts have likewise held that discrimination on the basis of transgender…

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Resolution of wage violations not necessarily assured under PAID pilot program

A new pilot program announced by the U.S. Department of Labor just last week provides employers with renewed hope that the agency is changing its approach from one of strict regulatory enforcement to one that seeks to encourage voluntary compliance and minimize litigation.  Employers, however, should proceed with caution before voluntarily disclosing their possible violations…

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Sixth Circuit rules Title VII outweighs religious defense in case of transgender employee

While the debate is still not settled as to whether Title VII’s prohibition on sex discrimination applies to LGBTQ workers, at least one more federal appeals court has officially weighed in on the subject. On March 7, 2018, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals held that federal anti-discrimination laws include protections for transgender and/or transitioning…

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Appeals court continues narrow interpretation of Oklahoma’s non‑solicitation statute

Dealing with departing employees can be tricky. That’s why many companies require certain employees — particularly those with access to confidential or proprietary company information or customers — to sign written agreements that prohibit them from engaging in various acts of unfair competition after they leave the company. While Oklahoma law looks favorably on confidentiality…

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