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Sonni advises companies on general business strategy and commercial litigation, as well as employment discrimination matters before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), related state agencies and before state and federal courts. In addition, she represents employers regarding numerous regulatory issues, wage and hour laws, restrictive covenant agreements, reductions in force, and public policy discharge matters.

In counseling employers on how to implement the Illinois Pregnancy Accommodation Act, we have noticed many employers have overlooked two important requirements—one of which easily can be audited without the employer even knowing.

Notice Posting

First, Illinois employers must post the English version of this notice in a conspicuous location on their premises, along with

On June 14, 2016, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) published its final rule substantially revising the sex discrimination guidelines for federal contractors and subcontractors. The new rule brings the sex discrimination guidelines implemented in 1970 “from the ‘Mad Men’ era to the modern era.”

The final rule applies to any business or organization that (1) holds a single federal contract, subcontract or federally assisted construction contract in excess of $10,000; (2) has federal contracts or subcontracts that, combined, total in excess of $10,000 in any 12-month period; or (3) holds government bills of lading, serves as a depository of federal funds, or is an issuing and paying agency for U.S. savings bonds and notes in any amount.

As we informed you on June 22, 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL) “persuader rule” was to go into effect on July 1, 2016.  However, on June 27, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas granted a nationwide preliminary injunction on the rule.  The so-called persuader rule required employers and law firms to file a Form LM-20 detailing expenditures on common legal services, such as supervisor training, drafting union avoidance materials, and providing other labor advice.

On April 14, 2015, the long awaited rules governing union elections went into effect. These so-called ambush election rules were delayed since they were first proposed in 2011 due to a number of legal roadblocks. If your company is being organized under the new rules, everything you knew about the process has likely changed. In fact, these are the broadest sweeping changes in union elections in half a century.

The biggest change is the time between the union filing a petition with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) until the actual union election, so instead of 42 days it will now be as little as 11 days. Who benefits from this reduction? Many business groups argue that the reduction is to allow unions to gain the upper hand in winning union elections. The shortened time frame can allow unions to organize a workforce secretly for months and then spring an election on a company who has one week to respond to the union’s “ambush.”

Below are a few highlights of what employers can expect under the new rules:

Dealing with union organizing campaigns just became more difficult for employers. On April 14, 2015, the long anticipated National Labor Relations Board’s Rules governing union organizing campaigns and elections went into effect. These so-called “ambush” election rules will likely catch companies off guard when they are faced with a new union organizing campaign.  In fact,

Here is the good news, more than ever manufacturers are looking at reshoring manufacturing jobs to the U.S.  A few years ago only 14% were looking at reshoring as a viable option.  That number has climbed to 21% of large manufacturers actually reshoring or preparing to do so, according to a recent article in the Financial Times.  As we recently informed you, executives are looking at onshoring due to rising wages in developing countries, shipping costs, more direct communications between design teams and manufacturing operations, and less money tied up in finished goods as they are transported to their markets.

There was a time when the decision to offshore manufacturing operations to an emerging market was an easy business decision.  However, the past decade has many companies questioning that business model.  Rising labor costs, uncertain supply chains, labor unrest and the costly and lengthy delivery time for manufactured goods coming from Asia has exponentially increased the cost to offshore manufacturing.