Maine News & Analysis

  • When are disabled employees 'qualified' within meaning of ADA?

    About a year ago, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit reminded employers that employees must have a covered "disability" to be protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This year, the 1st Circuit (which covers employers in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island) continued that trend with another employer-friendly discussion about what it means to be a "qualified individual" under the ADA.

  • 2nd Circuit deems Connecticut nurse consultant exempt from overtime pay

    The 2nd Circuit, whose decisions are binding on federal courts in Connecticut and Vermont, has issued a ruling that provides significant guidance on overtime exemptions for professional employees. The recent decision was a win for the employer.

  • Maine bill would expand workplace benefits for domestic violence victims

    Although many of us know the impact domestic violence can have on a family, we may not think about its repercussions in the workplace. Under Maine law, victims of violence (or those whose family members are victims) are entitled to benefits from their employer. Recently, a new state bill ― an Act to Provide Leave from Work for Victims of Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, or Stalking ― was proposed to clarify and expand those benefits. Now is a good time to review current law and discuss the potential changes that could affect your workplace.

  • Don't wait a decade: 5 things all employers should do annually

    A few months ago, millions of people made New Year's resolutions. Employers should be no different. Completing a thorough review of your employment practices each year is crucial to running a legally compliant business. It isn't too late to do it now, either. To help you get started, here are five things all employers should be doing every year.

  • Tips for responding calmly to Maine Human Rights Commission complaints

    Thinking about employment discrimination claims, business owners might assume that if an individual were to file one, they would be served with a lawsuit. It might surprise small business owners checking their mail, then, to find a nondescript envelope from an entity known as the Maine Human Rights Commission (MHRC). And it might further surprise them to read a cover letter stating their organization is the subject of a human rights complaint.

  • Ready for the future of recruiting? AI in the spotlight

    Some tout the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in hiring as a means of quickly and efficiently screening job applicants and, perhaps more important, removing human bias from hiring. But others point to AI doing just the opposite ― actually introducing bias into the process. Regardless of the pros and cons, employers need to realize AI isn't going away and is instead gaining ground in various facets of the workplace.

  • Sorting out rules on joint employment: DOL, NLRB, EEOC all involved

    Figuring out when a joint-employment arrangement exists can be like traveling a dusty, winding road. When will the dust settle, and where will the road go? Those questions haven't been completely answered. One answer became clear in January when the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced its final rule on joint employment. But the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) also is at work on the issue, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is working on a rule. Here's a look at where the issue stands.

  • Is 'OK, Boomer' age discrimination? Supreme Court might tell us

    Life may be a meme ― or at least it may seem that way sometimes, especially after a meme embodying intergenerational conflict recently worked its way into arguments in an age discrimination case before the highest court in the land. At oral arguments in Babb v. Wilkie, Chief Justice John Roberts asked one of the advocates if using the phrase "OK, Boomer" during the hiring process was age discrimination.

  • Dont play with fire by granting comp time request

    Q A nonexempt employee sent us an e-mail requesting time off in lieu of pay for overtime hours he already worked. Are we allowed to grant his request?

  • Cutting-Edge HR

    Hiring trends over next decade identified. Recruiting and job review site Glassdoor has mined its worldwide trove of job and hiring data and created a list of eight HR and recruiting trends for 2020 and the coming decade: (1) Artificial intelligence will get a seat in upper management, (2) 2020 will begin a culture-first decade for employers, (3) companies will refresh hiring playbooks ahead of a potential recession, (4) employers will further prioritize diversity and inclusion jobs, (5) recruiters will adapt as 65 and older Baby Boomers become the fastest-growing workforce, (6) more people will find their next job on a mobile device, (7) Brexit will threaten tech hiring in the United Kingdom, and (8) the 2020 election cycle will unleash companies political side.