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General Search Results:
Timing is Everything: NJ Appellate Division Compels Arbitration of Employee’s Sex Harassment Claims
On October 26, 2022, the New Jersey Appellate Division in Rourke v. Herr Foods, Inc. once again confirmed that the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) preempts the 2019 amendment to the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD) invalidating employment agreements that require employees to waive rights pertaining to claims of harassment, discrimination and/or retaliation. Thus, the employee was required to proceed to arbitration on his sexual harassment, sexual assault and retaliation claims.
Dina Mastellone To Present on Labor & Employment Law Panel at NJSBA Mid-Year Meeting
Firm Partner & Human Resources Counseling & Compliance specialist Dina M. Mastellone, Esq. will present at the 2022 New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA) Mid-Year Meeting.
Dina Mastellone and Jennifer Roselle to Present Webinar "Updated Guidance on Drug Testing, Discipline & Cannabis In The Workplace" for New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers
Genova Burns Partners Dina Mastellone, Esq. and Jennifer Roselle, Esq. will present a webinar for the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers on October 27th entitled, "High Maintenance: Updated Guidance on Drug Testing, Discipline & Cannabis In The Workplace."
High Maintenance: The NJ Cannabis Regulatory Commission Rolls Out Long-Awaited Guidance On Drug Testing, Discipline, & Cannabis In The Workplace
Employers, note that the Guidance from the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission (the Commission) is only a temporary gap-fill. The Commission has yet to issue standards on the required certification process for those workplace experts who will be designated to detect an employee’s on-the-job impairment from cannabis (among other substances). Here’s what New Jersey employers need to know now.
You Snooze You Lose: NJ Appellate Division Affirms Dismissal of Sleep Apnea Disability Bias Class Action
On August 15, 2022, the New Jersey Appellate Division declined to reinstate a disability bias class action brought by a New Jersey Transit train operator who was required undergo a sleep apnea screening due to the results of his physical examination as required by NJ Transit’s policy stemming from safety concerns as a result of a 2016 train accident.
Is Age Just A Number?
On August 15, 2022, in Cronin v. Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., et al., the Third Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the District of New Jersey’s grant of summary judgement to Booz Allen on Cronin’s age discrimination claims, finding that Cronin was unable to show that Booz Allen’s non-discriminatory reasons for not hiring her were “so plainly wrong that it cannot have been [Booz Allen]’s real reason.” Absent such a showing, the Third Circuit would not overturn the decision of the District Court.
An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure: Employer Escapes Liability in FFCRA COVID Litigation
America may be moving forward from the COVID-19 pandemic, but employers continue to deal with its aftermath as they face lawsuits alleging violations under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).
A Real “Who Dunnit?”: Dispute Over Unsigned Arbitration Agreement Means Judges Must Wear Detective’s Cap
On July 18, 2022, the New Jersey Appellate Division provided a perfect reminder why all employers and HR professionals should diligently confirm that new hires complete all on-boarding paperwork. In Bhoj v. OTG Management, LLC, the Appellate Division reversed a trial court’s order compelling arbitration, finding that the terminated employee’s failure to sign or acknowledge receipt of an arbitration agreement presented a factual mystery that required a more in-depth investigation by the judge before she could enforce an unsigned arbitration agreement.
Dina Mastellone, Kathleen Barnett Einhorn, Jennifer Borek & Maria Fruci Elected for Leadership Roles in the New Jersey Women Lawyers Association
Genova Burns is pleased to congratulate several of our brightest attorneys who have been elected to leadership roles in New Jersey Women Lawyers Association.
It’s Settled . . . Or Is It? NJ Appellate Division Rules The NJLAD Does Not Prohibit Non-Disparagement Clauses in Settlement Agreements
On May 31, 2022, in Savage v. Township of Neptune, the New Jersey Appellate Division partially upheld, and partially overturned, a trial court’s enforcement of a private settlement agreement, holding that although the settlement agreement’s non-disparagement clause was enforceable and not violative of the statutory prohibition against enforcing non-disclosure provisions in harassment/discrimination/retaliation cases, the employee’s allegedly disparaging statements did not actually violate the non-disparagement clause as written.
Digital Walls Surrounding Speech on Social Media Crumble: NJ Appellate Division Upholds Employee Termination for Racist Facebook Posts
On May 20, 2022, in McVey v AtlantiCare Medical System, the New Jersey Appellate Division Panel affirmed the dismissal of an employee’s case holding that her termination was not in violation of the protections afforded to speech. After losing her job for posting racist comments on social media, Plaintiff, Heather J. McVey, learned that freedom of speech, like all rights, is not absolute.
Dina Mastellone and Jennifer Roselle to Present "Clearing The Haze: Maintaining A Drug Free Workforce" Webinar for NJ CAR
Firm Partners Dina M. Mastellone, Esq. and Jennifer Roselle, Esq. will present a webinar entitled, "Clearing The Haze: Maintaining A Drug Free Workforce" for the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers (NJCAR) on June 8th.
New York’s New Electronic Monitoring Law Effective May 7, 2022
As we previously notified our readers, it’s a new dawn of electronic monitoring in New York. Effective May 7, 2022, employers engaging in electronic monitoring must provide detailed notice to their employees. Notice will be required if the employer wishes to digitally monitor or otherwise intercept phone conversations, text messages, e-mails and internet usage of employees.
Glass Houses: Hostile Work Environment Claim Dismissed Due to Employee’s Own Unprofessional Conduct
On April 19, 2022, in Bouziotis v. Iron Bar, LLC, the New Jersey Appellate Division upheld a trial court’s dismissal of a former bartender’s hostile work environment and gender discrimination claims partly on the grounds that employee partook in the “pejorative language and boorish conduct pervading Iron Bar’s atmosphere,” just as much as anyone else, regardless of gender. Because the former employee could not show that the alleged misconduct occurred “but for [her] gender,” the Appellate Division upheld the trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of the employer.
Employer Documentation Saves the Day & Earns Dismissal of Age Bias Lawsuit
On April 4, 2022, in the matter of Jane Rocks, et al. v. PNC Investments LLC, et al., a three-judge Appellate Panel affirmed the Superior Court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of PNC Investments LLC and dismissing the former employees’ claims of age discrimination, hostile work environment, and constructive discharge in violation of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD). The Appellate Division found the employees were unable to demonstrate that they were held to higher standards due to their age.
Genova Burns Congratulates Firm Attorneys Named to Super Lawyers & Rising Star Listings for 2022
Genova Burns congratulates firm attorneys who have been named to the 2022 Super Lawyers & Rising Stars listings by Super Lawyers, a Thomson Reuters-owned rating service of outstanding lawyers.
NJ Appellate Division Upholds Requests, Not Commands, By Employers to Maintain Confidentiality in Employment Investigations
On February 28, 2022, the New Jersey Appellate Division ruled that a request for confidentiality by an investigator in connection with a discrimination or harassment investigation is valid and does not violate an employee’s right of free speech or the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD). In Usachenok v. State of New Jersey Department of the Treasury, et al., the Appellate Division denied an attempt made by a former employee to invalidate a regulation by the State's Civil Service Commission requesting confidentiality in connection with a harassment investigation.
Genova Burns Diversifying Management Roles Announces New Leadership Team & Structure
Newark-based Genova Burns announced that Co-Founding Partner James M. Burns, Esq. will take on the firm’s managing partner role. Current Chairman & Managing Partner Angelo J. Genova, Esq. will step down as managing partner, but continue as Chairman.
New York City Passes Law Requiring Salary Ranges in Job Postings
A makeover is on the horizon for job postings in New York City. On December 15, 2021, the New York City Council passed new legislation relating to wage transparency on job postings. On January 15, 2022, New York City Mayor Eric Adams returned this bill without a veto, effectively passing it into law. The goal of the legislation was to reduce pay disparities affecting historically disadvantaged applicants, which follows a national trend.
Whose Burden is it Anyway? NJ Appellate Division Holds Employee Fails to Meet the Burden of Persuasion of Showing Discriminatory Intent
Despite surviving summary judgment, securing a favorable verdict at the second trial, and being awarded counsel fees, Plaintiff’s gender discrimination case was abruptly dismissed by the Appellate Division. On January 3, 2022, the three-judge panel held that an employee in a discrimination case bears the burden of persuasion at all stages. This employee’s argument fell short of that burden, and her case was, therefore, dismissed.