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State and Local Resources

State Workplace Law News
States in Forefront of Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity Bias Legislation
Due to Congress’s inactivity, the states have stepped in, enacting new laws or expanding rights under existing state nondiscrimination laws. The proliferation of state and local laws that are broader than federal law is apparent in the area of sexual orientation and gender identity bias.

States Limiting Inquiries About, Uses of, Workers’ Criminal History
Many states are passing laws that prohibit or restrict employers from making employment decisions based on certain information within an individual’s criminal history, including convictions and arrests. In addition, states and local governments are joining the “ban-the-box” movement to limit when and how employers may question applicants for employment about their criminal history.

Using Workers’ Credit Information Increasingly Prohibited
Employers’ use of credit information in making hiring and other employment decisions is coming under increasing fire in many states, with employee advocates charging that credit checks often disproportionately disadvantage minority and low-income job seekers and employees.

 

State Laws Ban Access to Worker’s Social Media Accounts

Social media has transformed the workplace, but companies must be aware of the limits on an employer’s ability to monitor an employee’s social media accounts. In addition to limitations under federal law imposed by the Federal Electronic Communications Privacy Act, several states have enacted statutes that limit the interception and monitoring of social media.

 

Other Recent State Law Developments

CA - California Workplace Law News
Employees Requesting Accommodation Are Now Protected
A new law amends the California Fair Employment and Housing Act to reflect what many already believed to be the law: employers and other covered entities cannot retaliate against employees or other persons who request a religious accommodation or an accommodation for a disability.

HI - Hawaii Workplace Law News
Hawaii Bans Noncompete and Non-Solicit Clauses in High-Tech Employment
A new law bars high-tech companies in Hawaii from requiring their employees to enter into noncompete and non-solicit agreements as a condition of employment. Act 158 went into effect on July 1, 2015.

MD - Maryland Workplace Law News
Montgomery County Requires Paid Sick Leave
Montgomery County, Md., joined in the recent trend of mandatory sick leave laws by requiring employers with one or more employees in the county to provide paid sick and safe leave to covered employees.

NC - North Carolina Workplace Law News
Employers May Sue for Employees’ Property Theft
Beginning Jan. 1, 2016, North Carolina employers will be able to recover monetary damages resulting from employees’ unauthorized access to and orth Carolina employers will be able to recover monetary damages resulting from employees’ unauthorized access to and theft of their property
.

NJ - New Jersey Workplace Law News
No Heightened Bar for Whistle-Blower Claims by ‘Watchdog’ Employees
In a unanimous decision, the New Jersey Supreme Court refused to raise the bar for employees whose job entails ensuring legal compliance (“watchdog” employees) to bring whistle-blower claims under the New Jersey Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA).

PR -  - Puerto Rico Workplace Law News
Exec Cannot Sue Board Members for Breach of Contract
A former employee cannot sue individual members of a corporation’s board of directors for breach of an employment contract and negligence in execution of fiduciary duties, where: 1) the individual board members are not parties to the employment contract; and 2) the employee and his relatives are not shareholders with standing to sue board members for alleged breach of fiduciary duty, the Puerto Rico Supreme Court held.

RI - Rhode Island Workplace Law News
Rhode Island Adds Workplace Protections for Pregnant and Nursing Women
The Rhode Island General Assembly passed legislation mandating workplace accommodation of pregnant and nursing women. The bill was signed into law at the end of June and became effective immediately. 

WA - Washington Workplace Law News
Washington Piece-Rate Workers to Receive Separate Rest Breaks
The expansive interpretation of meal and rest break regulations continues in Washington State, as the state's highest court rules that agricultural piece-rate workers are entitled to separate paid rest breaks.


SHRM Reports on State Legislation

For the most recent information on the status of an HR issue SHRM is monitoring in state legislatures, see the SHRM Government Public Policy State Affairs under the "Public Policy" tab. 

States by U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal
Click on a state for a state law update. For a list of state-by-state charts on state laws, click here.
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