|Feb. 16, 2019 | www.fisherphillips.com|
We’re living at a time when a unique convergence of multiple trends is ensuring that autonomous vehicles (AVs) will soon change life as we know it. On the technology side, vehicles are trending towards being electrified and connected with one another, while the exponential growth and viability of artificial intelligence creates new pathways never before imagined. On the social side, society is becoming increasingly urbanized, while people demand immediacy and continue to adopt an advancing usage mentality (think Airbnb). Meanwhile, as environmental, safety, and economic factors impact our thinking and our everyday actions, it’s simply a question of if—not when—AVs will regularly populate our streets.
On the heels of the Supreme Court’s decision earlier this year in Epic Systems Corporation v. Lewis, which held that the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) does not bar class or collective action waivers in arbitration agreements, a federal court of appeals recently took up two corollary questions about whether federal wage claims and independent contractor misclassification claims are also subject to class waivers. The good news for employers: in both cases, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the arbitration agreements and class waivers, demonstrating the power and scope of the Supreme Court’s Epic ruling.
You find out an employee launches a false complaint of discrimination or harassment and you terminate them for their dishonesty. There’s no harm in that, right? Think again. There has been a recent trend of cases where courts grapple with the “honest belief” rule and its impact on Title VII retaliation claims, and the results aren’t always easy to swallow.
The National Labor Relations Board recently announced an expansion of its alternative dispute resolution (ADR) program: the free program for employers, unions, and individual participants puts a case on hold for 30 days while parties try their hands at mediation. As the NLRB’s website described in announcing the July 10 release, the Board aims to “help to facilitate mutually satisfactory settlements” by providing the parties with either a mediator with the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service or the ADR Program Director in an effort to get parties talking.
It’s hard to keep up with all the recent changes to labor and employment law. While the law always seems to evolve at a rapid pace, there have been an unprecedented number of changes for the past few years—and this past month was no exception.