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New Jersey Employment Law Blog

New Jersey temp workers fear speaking out about violations

While it is a philosophy that in the U.S., justice always prevails, in reality, life isn't always that easy. Justice is hard to come by in various types of legal situations, including in a workers' rights situation in New Jersey.

Many of us have begun our careers or perhaps still support ourselves and our families through temp work. Temp agencies can be a logical and effective way to get work and earn a paycheck. Sadly, many temp workers in New Jersey claim that they are victims of mistreatment.

When does the new overtime rule take effect?

This year, Congress passed a new overtime rule that would increase the salary limit of workers who would be eligible for and guaranteed to be paid overtime if they work more than 40 hours a week. The new rule, under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is ready to go into effect Dec. 1 this year. However, the U.S. House of Representatives in late September passed a bill that aims to delay that start for six months. It doesn't seem the rule will actually be delayed, though, as President Barack Obama has released a statement saying he would veto the bill that aims to delay the start of the overtime rule.

Assuming the rule will go into effect as planned on Dec. 1, the changes would be significant. The rule doubles the salary limit of those who would be guaranteed overtime pay under federal law. Right now, for workers to qualify for overtime pay, their salary can be no more than $23,660 per year. Come Dec. 1, if the overtime rule takes effect as planned, the new salary limit for overtime pay is $47,476 per year.

New Jersey Nursing Home Abuse And Neglect Attorney Discusses Nursing Homes And Binding Arbitration For Abused Victims

"Or... the First of the Dominoes to (Finally!) Fall for Forced Arbitration"

If you search the word "arbitration" in any of my past blogs over the years, you'll know what arbitration really is versus what its proponents say it is.

The short review: Arbitration is a process where you give up your right to access a trial by jury in a court room in exchange for putting your claims before a single person hired and paid for by Corporate America.

Oh, of course, the arbitration associations will tell you that the arbitrators are "neutral" and "fair," and they'll even tell you that when your matter begins in arbitration, you're not just assigned someone randomly; you're given a list of 10 or more names from which both parties can choose. 

Is your severance agreement what it seems?

Losing a job happens to many people during the course of life. It can still be at least initially earth-shaking and disheartening to lose a job. For some, the promise of severance pay gets them through the rough patch.

The money serves as a financial buffer until someone can find a new job. What if your severance pay agreement, however, isn't just a buffer? Could it be your former employer paying you off in order to stay quiet about an employment law matter?

Study shows consumers still wary of driverless technology

A study by Kelley Blue Book shows that Americans are still wary of driverless technology, and prefer to drive themselves. Some wonder if this attitude can slow the development of driverless technology.

The study shows that Americans would prefer cars that can self-drive, but also allow the user to take the wheel when they'd like to. This contradicts the recent statement by Lyft, who believes that car ownership in larger cities would be phased out by the year 2025 because of the availability of services like theirs and driverless cars.

New Jersey on list of 10 most dangerous states for pedestrians

In a recent study, 24/7 Wall St. examined the National Highway Traffic Safety Commission's data from traffic-related death rates in 2014 and compared the data to the same in 2004.

New Mexico topped the list with 3.5 pedestrian deaths per 100,000 residents. The least deadly state was Minnesota, who had just 0.27 deaths per 100,000 people, and New Jersey was ranked at 10, with 1.88 per 100,000. 

Did cop's 'braver' choice lose him his job?

As a society today, we collectively face various sources of discord and frustration. Race relations and violence within the police force are matters of top concern today. It seems like there is consistently a new story of unarmed, African American individuals being shot by authorities.

An out-of-state case relating to this high-touch American matter stands out in a couple of notable ways. First, the police officer at the center of the incident did NOT shoot the civilian. Two other officers who responded to the scene shot and killed the suspect.

Exercising right to safety is protected by whistleblower laws

As an employee of a business, you have various rights. We often discuss employment laws related to discrimination, harassment, wages and overtime pay. But you also have a right to a safe workplace and healthy work environment

Depending on a person's line of work, the health risks posed on-the-job vary greatly. For example, a New Jersey construction worker might face more day-to-day accident risks than an accountant. Still, both types of employees not only should be reasonably protected from accidents; they should also be protected from retaliation should either report a safety problem at their place of work.

I'm a victim in the workplace, but not part of a protected class

Bullying has become a widely-discussed public concern in recent years. When we hear "bullying," many of us might think about school and kids. But as we grow up, many of us adults find out that just because school ends, that doesn't mean child-like behavior ends.

Even in the workplace, bullying can take a strong hold of some people. A more formal and legal term for bullying against certain protected classes of people is called discrimination and/or harassment. But what about those who feel bullied but are not part of a minority or protected class?

When Employers Retaliate

Retaliation is among the most common forms of employer misconduct. An employee reports sexual harassment, or fraud or racial discrimination and finds herself or himself fired or facing other negative consequences at work. An employee chooses to exercise the right to family medical leave and finds the position terminated in the interim. A worker files a claim for a workplace injury and is let go for missing work. Employers can fire workers for a wide variety of reasons, but they cannot retaliate against workers who choose to exercise their rights. An employee who has been the victim of retaliation should consider filing a lawsuit.

Unfortunately, many employers are adept at hiding retaliation under the guise of perfectly legal employment practices. Most employers are aware that they cannot fire a woman for getting pregnant. These employers will likely say they are cutting back, or claim the firing was based on performance or another valid justification. It is important to understand just what retaliation looks like so you know how and when to fight back.