First Circuit Recognizes Sexual Orientation as the “Plus” in “Sex-Plus” Discrimination Suit

2018-02-02T21:17:55+00:00 February 2nd, 2018|Categories: Anthony Bova, Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation|

The First Circuit has recognized for the first time that sexual orientation can be the “plus” in a “sex-plus” discrimination case. The facts upon which a Rhode Island federal district court jury (and ultimately the First Circuit) found gender discrimination premised on the “sex-plus” theory are vile. The plaintiff, a

A Refresher on Retaliation Based on the EEOC’s Revised Retaliation Guidance

2017-01-13T17:29:47+00:00 September 7th, 2016|Categories: Alexis P. Theriault, Discrimination & Harassment, Human Resources Compliance, Litigation, MCAD & EEOC, Thomas J. Gallitano|

Retaliation is now the most frequently alleged basis of discrimination. The number of retaliation claims has doubled since 1998. In fiscal year 2015, retaliation accounted for nearly 45% of the claims the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received. Despite this, the Commission had not revised its guidance on retaliation since it was first issued in 1998.

Retaliation – The Basics

2017-01-06T17:01:32+00:00 September 1st, 2016|Categories: Alexis P. Theriault, Discrimination & Harassment, Human Resources Compliance, Litigation, MCAD & EEOC, Thomas J. Gallitano|

Retaliation “occurs when an employer takes a materially adverse action because an individual has engaged in, or may engage in, activity in furtherance of the EEO laws the Commission enforces.” See EEOC Enforcement Guidance on Retaliation and Related Issues. These laws include Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII), the

Major Revisions to Federal Trade Secrets Law Now in Effect – Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 Signed by President Obama

2017-01-13T17:39:10+00:00 May 17th, 2016|Categories: Intellectual Property, Katherine Kelter, Kathleen O'Toole, Laws & Regulations, Litigation, Trade Secrets|

On May 11, 2016, President Obama signed into law the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (“DTSA”). This law substantially revises federal trade secret practice in the United States. Most notably, the DTSA creates a mechanism for private civil trade secret claims to be pursued directly in federal court. The law is also significant for

Supreme Court Limits Effectiveness of Rule 68 Offers as a Tool to Combat Class Action Litigation

2017-01-13T17:24:42+00:00 February 4th, 2016|Categories: Adam M. Santeusanio, Alexis P. Theriault, FLSA, Laws & Regulations, Litigation|

Since the advent of modern class action litigation in the 1960s, companies have struggled to stem the tide of these time-consuming and expensive lawsuits. Consider the following strategy. After learning that a plaintiff has filed a putative class action against it, the company offers to fully and completely compensate the named plaintiff for its injuries,

Consumers Cannot Waive Chapter 93A Liability for a Building Code Violation

2017-01-13T17:12:42+00:00 January 19th, 2016|Categories: James Peloquin, Litigation|

The Massachusetts Appeals Court has ruled that a consumer cannot waive a contractor’s liability for a building code violation that also violates the Massachusetts Consumer Protection Act, so-called Chapter 93A. In Downey v. Chutehall Construction Co., Ltd., 14-P-1062 (January 6, 2016), the defendant contractor had installed a rubber membrane roof in violation of the Massachusetts

Supreme Court Considers Timing For Constructive Discharge Claims

2017-01-13T17:14:26+00:00 December 16th, 2015|Categories: Alexis P. Theriault, Discrimination & Harassment, Litigation, MCAD & EEOC|

In Green v. Brennan, the Supreme Court will decide an important procedural question involving the issue of “constructive discharge”—what is the trigger that starts the clock for filing a claim? Is it the employer’s last discriminatory act or the date of the employee’s resignation? The Justices heard argument on November 30th, and a decision is

Update on Medical Marijuana Law and its Impact on Employment

2017-01-13T17:21:04+00:00 June 22nd, 2015|Categories: Labor Law & NLRB, Laws & Regulations, Litigation, Mary E. (Beth) O'Neal, Wage & Hour|

In our blog posted on May 29 2015, we reviewed the issues surrounding the use by an employee of medical marijuana and its consequences in the workplace. Since then, a closely watched case pending before the Colorado Supreme Court was decided by the full court. Coats v. Dish Network, LLC, 2015 WL 3744265 (June 15,

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