In an era where trade secret misappropriation battles can shape corporate landscapes, the Apple v. Rivos case stands as a stark reminder of the importance of diligent onboarding practices when it comes to trade secrets. In this case, the court’s scrutiny of employee conduct underscores a crucial lesson: companies should ensure that new hires refrain from carrying confidential information from their previous employers. As exemplified by defendant Rivos, making an effort to remind new hires to avoid retaining confidential information can also go a long way.Here, we discuss the intricacies of the Apple v. Rivos case and provide several takeaways.
There is a time and place for everything, or so they say. Eminem and Too $hort are both somewhat polarizing artists. From songs such as Eminem’s “Cleaning Out My Closet” to Too $hort’s infamous “Blow The Whistle”, some of their more provocative music has been put in the spotlight in the workplace of an apparel manufacturer. Stephanie Sharp and six other employees, including one man, filed a hostile work environment claim under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act against their employer. The plaintiffs alleged that many employees, “mostly women”, complained to the employer about the “obscene and sexually offensive and misogynistic character” of the music being played in the workplace, even as far as various employees placing speakers on a forklift and driving around the facility blasting the music. However, notably, “a number of men” were also “offended by the manner in which the music portrayed men, and their relationships with women.” The employer argued that the conduct was not discriminatory on the basis of sex, emphasizing that “both men and women were offended by the work environment allegedly created by the music played in the warehouse.”
On January 11, 2023, Elizabeth Wilkins, the FTC’s Director of the Office of Policy Planning, spoke to the Capitol Forum about the FTC’s proposed rule to ban non-compete agreements. This conversation was the most significant discussion of the proposed rule by the FTC since it was announced on January 5. Below are the four most salient takeaways.
On January 5, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) proposed an expansive new rule which would impose a near-complete ban on the use of non-competes (the “Proposed Rule”) by employers. The Proposed Rule is the culmination of the FTC’s recent efforts, following President Biden’s July 9, 2021 Executive Order on…
The United States Supreme Court recently resolved a circuit split regarding when a party has waived its contractual right to arbitrate by participating in litigation prior to seeking to arbitrate a dispute. In Morgan v. Sundance, Inc., the Court held that the party seeking to resist arbitration does not need to show that it has been prejudiced by the other party’s delay in seeking to compel arbitration. Notably, and in holding that “the Eighth Circuit erred in conditioning a waiver of the right to arbitrate on a showing of prejudice,” the Supreme Court decided against the use of “custom-made rules, to tilt the playing field in favor of (or against) arbitration.”
New York’s unique approach to evidentiary procedure – and specifically, its rules governing admissions by a party opponent’s agent – have frustrated litigators for years. Recent changes to New York’s rules on civil procedure, however, have brought the state’s approach to hearsay more in line with the standard set by the Federal Rules of Evidence. These changes could significantly impact future litigation, especially disputes centered on workplace conduct.
According to a recent decision, employers who want to keep employees on their premises for security checks after they have already clocked out must pay their employees to do so—at least in Pennsylvania.
In 2013, two Amazon.com employees filed a putative class action in the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas against their employer, certain of Amazon’s affiliates, and Integrity Staffing Solutions, Inc., seeking compensation under the Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act (“PMWA”), 43 Pa. Cons. Stat. § 333.101 et seq. for time spent undergoing a mandatory security check after their shifts had already ended. The plaintiffs worked in a warehouse in Pennsylvania where they performed tasks related to fulfilling customer orders placed on Amazon. At the end of their shifts, the plaintiffs were not allowed to immediately leave the premises, as they were required to remain at the warehouse to proceed through a screening process that included walking through a metal detector. If the alarm went off, the worker would be subject to a secondary screening process where a security guard would search the worker’s bags and personal items. The plaintiffs alleged that the entire screening process could take up to twenty minutes, or even more if there were delays. The defendants did not compensate the workers for any of this time.
On April 21, 2021, the Second Appellate District of the Court of Appeal of the State of California filed an unpublished opinion rejecting Uber’s attempt to enforce an arbitration provision that waived an employee’s right to bring a claim under the California Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA). This statute authorizes “aggrieved employees” to file lawsuits to recover civil penalties from employers for violations of the California labor code.