Energy Bill Could Increase De Facto Contractor Suspension

    The House's recent $34 billion energy and water appropriations bill continues a recent trend of piecemeal restrictions on federal contract awards, including provisions that would prevent companies from competing for energy and environment contracts if they violate certain federal labor or tax policies.

    Ogletree Snags Barker Olmsted Name Partner In San Diego

    Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC has hired veteran employment law litigator Christopher Olmsted, formerly a name partner at Barker Olmsted & Barnier, as a shareholder in its San Diego office.

    Heller Ehrman Takes Ex-Partner Clawback Battle To 9th Circ.

    The plan administrator for bankrupt Heller Ehrman LLP on Thursday appealed to the Ninth Circuit a California federal judge's refusal to allow the defunct law firm to claw back unfinished business profits from former partners representing its former clients at Jones Day, Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP and other big-name firms.

    Pa. Coal Co. Can't Switch To OSHA Regulation, Says 3rd Circ.

    The Third Circuit ruled on Friday that it won't allow the operators of a coal preparation facility in Shamokin, Pennsylvania, that has been regulated by the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration since 1977 to switch to being regulated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

    Block's NLRB Renomination To Spark Partisan Hostility

    President Barack Obama's renomination of Sharon Block — one of the recess appointees to the National Labor Relations Board invalidated in a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision — is likely to reignite political rancor, but if she makes it onto the board, attorneys say its agenda won't change much.

    McCaskill Wants Firings For VA Whistleblower Retaliation

    Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., announced Friday she would introduce legislation to better protect whistleblowers at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, pointing to “troubling” allegations of cover-ups of whistleblower reports amid a health care scandal engulfing the agency.

    Ex-CalPERS CEO Cops To Conspiracy In $3B Pay-To-Play Suit

    The former CEO of the California Public Employees Retirement System on Friday pled guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud with ex-CalPERS board member and former Los Angeles Deputy Mayor Alfred Villalobos in connection with a notorious $3 billion pay-to-play investment scheme.

    Meat Co. Seeks Toss Of Final EEOC Prayer Break Claims

    JBS USA LLC asked a Nebraska federal judge on Thursday to nix the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's remaining claims in a suit accusing the meat-packaging company of failing to accommodate Muslim workers' prayer requests, arguing the agency had failed to engage in good faith conciliation. 

    1st Circ. Told Class Arbitration Decision Is For Courts

    The availability of class arbitration is a gateway question of arbitrability for courts and not an arbitrator to decide, 99 Restaurants LLC told the First Circuit on Thursday, hitting back at a former server’s attempt to quash the company’s bid to force individual arbitration of her wage claims.

    Home Depot Fends Off Delivery Driver Wage Action

    An Arizona federal judge on Thursday tossed a putative class action accusing Home Depot Inc. of misclassifying delivery drivers as independent contractors to avoid paying overtime wages, saying the lead plaintiff is employed by a contracted trucking company, not the retailer.

    USPTO Chief Broke Rules To Hire Relative's Beau, OIG Says

    Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Texas, said during a Congressional hearing Friday that the chief trademark commissioner at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has threatened to sue the U.S. Department of Commerce's inspector general for releasing an unredacted report that claims the commissioner improperly hired a relative's fiance.

    Roberts' Pass on Hobby Lobby Signals Alito's Rise

    Chief Justice John G. Roberts stayed in the background in the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent blockbuster Affordable Care Act case over employer-sponsored contraceptives, handing the majority opinion to Associate Justice Samuel A. Alito in a surprising move that experts say marks Justice Alito’s rising influence as a conservative force on the court.

    American Apparel Defaulted After CEO Ouster, PE Firm Says

    Private equity firm Lion Capital Inc. is demanding immediate payment of a nearly $10 million in loans from American Apparel Inc. following the beleaguered clothing retailer’s recent ouster of its founder Dov Charney, according to documents filed in a New York court Friday.

    NJ Senators Introduce Bill To Cap Sick Leave Payouts

    New Jersey lawmakers announced a bill on Friday to cap sick leave payouts for retiring public employees at $15,000, a bipartisan effort aimed at curtailing massive payments on accrued sick time that was vetoed once before by Gov. Chris Christie, who wanted the amount slashed to zero.

    Latest Pa. OT Ruling Dooms Fluctuating Workweek Policies

    National employers operating in Pennsylvania would be wise to avoid the fluctuating workweek policy of calculating overtime wages, attorneys told Law360, in the wake of a federal court decision Thursday that reiterated earlier findings that the practice violates state law.

    Whistleblower Again Asks High Court To Mull Leave To Amend

    A whistleblower who asked the U.S. Supreme Court to revive a False Claims Act Suit against Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. has filed a brief supporting her request, asking the court to weigh in on when plaintiffs can request to amend a complaint.

    Revisions Take Bite Out Of Proposed NJ Hiring Restrictions

    New Jersey employers could soon be living with new hiring process restrictions intended to combat discrimination against the unemployed and remove barriers for people with criminal records, but those bills now before Gov. Chris Christie have undergone changes that should soften the impact for the business community if they become law.

    Oilfield Staffing Co. To Pay $1.6M In Back Wages, DOL Says

    A staffing agency that recruits workers for the oil and maritime fabrication industries agreed to pay $1.66 million after a U.S. Labor Department investigation revealed the company's record-keeping practices short-changed more than 1,500 workers on overtime pay, the DOL said Thursday.

    Xerox Affiliates Can't Dodge Call Center Worker Wage Claims

    A Washington federal judge on Thursday refused to let several Xerox Corp. affiliates escape a proposed class action's claims that their payment system violates the state’s minimum wage and overtime laws, ruling that employees paid “per minute” are actually hourly workers.

    Wendel Rosen Snags Employment Pro In Oakland

    Wendel Rosen Black & Dean LLP has added an employment lawyer with more than 30 years of experience from Kronick Moskovitz Tiedemann & Girard to bolster its Oakland, California, office, the firm recently announced.

    NLRB Poised To Change The Game At Private Schools

    Over the last few years, the National Labor Relations Board has stockpiled cases and solicited briefing on issues involving both religious schools and unionization efforts among adjunct faculty, graduate students and scholarship athletes. The NLRB's ultimate decision in these cases could fundamentally alter labor relations at private colleges and universities and spur organizing activity, say attorneys at Seyfarth Shaw LLP.

    Faruqi Wants Damages Testimony Nixed From Harassment Suit

    Faruqi & Faruqi LLP on Thursday called for a New York federal judge to throw out the damages testimony of an expert brought in by a former associate accusing the firm of sexual harassment, retaliation and defamation, saying his report “suggests bad faith.”

    Obama Renominates NLRB Candidate Canned By Noel Canning

    President Barack Obama is renominating Sharon Block to the National Labor Relations Board after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in NLRB v. Noel Canning that his recess appointment of the nominee was unconstitutional, the Associated Press reported Thursday.

    Calif. Businessman Gets 15 Years For Selling DuPont's Secrets

    The first person convicted of economic espionage by a U.S. jury was sentenced to 15 years in prison on Thursday for stealing manufacturing secrets from DuPont Co. and selling the information to Chinese-owned companies, according to reports.

    Lloyd's Wins For 'All Time' On Covering Scammer, Court Says

    A Florida federal judge held Thursday that Lloyd's of London has no duty under a professional liability policy to indemnify an insurance scammer against claims brought by AXA Equitable Life Insurance Co., finding a criminal conduct exclusion applied.