New Minimum Wages In Effect for 2016

As of January 1, 2016, the minimum wage is $9.60 per hour in Rhode Island and $10.00 per hour in Massachusetts.  Contact Muller Law with any questions you have regarding the impact these increases have on you or your business.


Workplace Bullying– Any Legal Recourse?

The “at-will” employment rule governing the typical employment relationship in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut usually means an employee can be terminated for almost any non-discriminatory reason.  Workplace bullying may be perfectly legal if it is not done on the basis of an impermissible characteristic such as race, national origin, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and
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R.I. Employment Law Newsletter Links

To download the new free employment poster which all Rhode Island employers must now post, click here. To download the new federal Fair Credit Reporting Act forms, click here.


Most of $3.5 Million Age Discrimination Verdict Upheld

Lawrence Trainor was a 59 year-old executive in the hotel business.  HEI wanted Trainor to relocate his home and office to Connecticut.  Trainor refused.  HEI offered Mr. Trainor a demotion to run a hotel in Cambridge.  He was not subject to overt or obvious age discrimination, but nevertheless filed an age discrimination charge with the Massachusetts
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RI Minimum Wage Goes Up January 1st

On the first of the year, Rhode Island’s minimum wage will increase 35 cents to $7.75 an hour, increasing the average minimum wage worker’s annual pay in Rhode Island’s by $510.  The state last increased its minimum wage back in 2007.  Labor groups say the 2013 wage increase will affect an estimated 29,000 low-income workers
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$14 Million Reminder: Tipped Employees Get The Tips

The First Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled in favor of baristas in Matamoros v. Starbucks Corp.  Click here for the full Starbucks Decision.  Baristas filed suit against the coffee chain protesting, under Massachusetts laws, the practice of allowing shift supervisors to share in the pooled gratuities.  The Massachusetts Tip Act states simply that “‘wait
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Employer Loses Bid to Kill FMLA Case Before Trial

The U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island recently allowed a worker’s case under the Family Medical Leave Act to go to trial.  In Barlow v. Dan’s Payroll Service, Inc.(click title to see full case), Neil Barlow went out on a one-week FMLA leave.  When he returned, he was moved to a new
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Jones v. Nationwide Life Insurance

In Jones, the plaintiff was required to pass a test in order to keep his job with an insurance company.  Before he took these tests, in an attempt to get necessary licenses, the plaintiff had multiple surgeries on his upper body that required him to take extensive pain medications.   After multiple unsuccessful attempts to
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Family Medical Leave Act — Accomodation

In Henry v. United Bank, the defendant employer prevailed on a motion for Summary Judgment.  The plaintiff employee accused his employer of retaliation and disability discrimination in violation of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).  The Court found that the employer did not violate these statutes by terminating the plaintiff’s employment after she had exhausted
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Homeless Person’s Rights

On June 21, Rhode Island made history by becoming the first state in the country to adopt a “Homeless Bill of Rights.”  The Bill prohibits healthcare workers, employers, landlords as well as the police from treating homeless people unfairly because of their housing status.  Initially some were concerned that the proposal could burden local governments
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