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Activists Challenge Wells Fargo on Many Fronts at Annual Shareholders Meeting

Activists seized on Wells Fargo's annual shareholder meeting this week to press the bank for changes to a wide range of alleged unfair practices. As the country's fourth-largest bank, Wells faces backlash from a scandal involving up to two million accounts opened without customer authorization, as well as related allegations of employment law violations - including firing whistleblowers who refused to participate in fraudulent account openings. Activists mobilizing around the Forgo Wells campaign, among others, have condemned the bank's use of forced arbitration clauses in customers' and employees' contracts, which obstruct many of these issues from coming to light because they prevent employees and consumers from banding together and taking Wells to court.

A Puzder-Led Labor Department Would Make Life Much Harder for U.S. Workers

President Trump's pick for Labor Secretary, Hardee's and Carl's Jr. CEO, Andrew Puzder, has come under attack by workers and their advocates since his nomination was first announced in December. Rightly so. Puzder's approach to doing business and his previous statements regarding key workplace issues paint a very worrisome picture regarding how workers will fare under his watch. Just ask the workers at his own company, who, in a report issued this week, describe a pattern of workplace violations, including being required to work sick and without pay, resulting from business decisions that appear to give low priority to workers' health and well-being.

Flag on the Play: Injured Professional Athletes Fighting for Compensation

Professional athletes are often likened to warriors and lionized for pushing their bodies to the breaking point, ignoring pain, and remaining stoic. Most accept that some injuries - sprains, pulled muscles, etc. - are part of the job. More and more, however, professional athletes are drawing a line when it comes to preventable injuries that can be attributed to the often willful negligence of the teams and leagues that employ them.

Navigating the Fissured Workplace: New Guidance from the DOL on Joint Employment

Last Wednesday, the Department of Labor issued guidance to clarify employees' rights and employers' obligations in an increasingly fragmented workplace. The Department of Labor Administrator's Interpretation (AI) No. 2016-1 addresses Joint employment under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA).

U.S. Oil Worker Wage-and-Hour Pay Rights Issues

Since July 2014, the price of oil has dropped by half. That's good for consumers' pocketbooks, but one segment of the population is facing hard times: U. S. oil industry workers.  In the past few years, the boom in oil production meant that companies needed to quickly expand hiring to meet the demand for workers. The rush to hire meant that some companies did not follow wage and hour laws.

Intern Lawsuits Force Progressive Media to Look Closely at Their Own Intern Policies

In his recent piece in Vice, former unpaid intern, Charles Davis, exposes the hypocrisy of liberal periodicals that write about labor exploitation but use unpaid interns to staff their newsrooms. According to Davis, even Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor and advocate for low wage workers, claimed to have never thought about the issue of unpaid internships.

NYPD Settles Pension Class Action in Favor of Active Military Service Employees

The NYPD has entered into a class-wide settlement of claims by officers who performed active military service during their employment with the NYPD. The officers alleged that the NYPD's method of calculating pension contributions for the period in which they were on military leave short-changed them in violation of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA).

In Re American Express Merchants' Litigation, No. 06-1871 (2d Cir. Feb. 1, 2012)

In this long-lived appeal, involving an antitrust tying claim against the American Express Company, the Second Circuit reaffirms its prior holding that an arbitration clause preventing class-action litigation of a medium-dollar claim may be unenforceable if its practical effect is to prevent the plaintiffs from vindicating their statutory rights.

Judge Wood Denies Second Motion Seeking Arbitration of Class and Collective Action Wage and Hour Claims

In a recent decision, Judge Wood distinguishes Supreme Court precedent to find an arbitration agreement that did not provide for class arbitration invalid under Second Circuit precedent because it foreclosed the exercise of statutory rights. Reaffirming her initial decision, Judge Wood determined defendant's reliance on the intervening decision of AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion ("Concepcion") in seeking reconsideration was misplaced. 

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