Legislation

On March 20, 2020, Governor Cuomo issued Executive Order No. 202.8, titled “Continuing Temporary Suspension and Modification of Laws Relating to the Disaster Emergency.” This Order affects various New York laws, including the Civil Practice Law and Rules, the Vehicle and Traffic Law, and the Business Corporation Law. It imposes the following changes to various…

Read More NYS Executive Order 202.8 Extends Statutes of Limitation Etc.

The New York State Legislature and Governor Cuomo have reached an agreement on legislation that would provide emergency paid sick time in response to the coronavirus / COVID-19 (available immediately) and permanent statewide paid sick time rights (beginning January 2021). The details of the legislation are summarized in a fact sheet issued by A Better…

Read More NY Paid Sick Leave Agreement Reached in Light of Coronavirus / COVID-19

The New York City Human Rights Law was recently amended, yet again, to enhance the protections available to NYC workers. Effective January 11, 2020, the statute – one of the (if not the) broadest civil rights laws in the country – protects freelancers and independent contractors in addition to, e.g., “employees” and interns. The new…

Read More NYC Human Rights Law Expanded to Protect Freelancers and Independent Contractors

Happy New Year! Recently, the New York State Human Rights Law (NYSHRL) – New York State’s primary anti-discrimination law – has been modified to strengthen employee protections. These changes, some occurring in 2019 and some occurring in 2020, are summarized at the New York State Division of Human Rights’ website, here. These changes include: Effective…

Read More NY State Law Protections for Employees: 2020 and Beyond

Effective October 11, 2019, the New York State Human Rights Law permits an award of punitive damages in certain employment discrimination cases. The relevant section is codified at NYS Executive Law § 297(4)(c), which provides: If, upon all the evidence at the hearing, the commissioner shall find that a respondent has engaged in any unlawful…

Read More NYS Human Rights Law Provides for Punitive Damages in Certain Employment Cases

Today, Governor Cuomo signed legislation (A8421 / S6577) that substantially strengthens the New York State Human Rights Law, particularly with respect to sexual harassment. Among other things, the legislation: Eliminates the “severe or pervasive” standard for hostile work environment claims; Eliminates the so-called “Faragher/Ellerth defense” to hostile work environment claims, in that “[t]he fact that…

Read More Governor Cuomo Signs Legislation Strengthening the New York State Human Rights Law

On Tuesday, July 23, 2019, Governor Cuomo signed a law, Senate Bill S1719C (A5981), which “establishes the crime of unlawful dissemination or publication of an intimate image” (a/k/a “revenge porn”). The legislation, inter alia, amends the Penal Law by adding a new section (§ 245.15), titled “Unlawful dissemination or publication of an intimate image”, and…

Read More “Revenge Porn” Legislation Signed Into Law in New York

On Wednesday, June 19, 2019, the New York State Legislature passed changes to state law regarding employment discrimination in general and sexual harassment in particular. In sum, the law (A8421 / S6577; version showing deletions/additions here), among other things: Provides increased protections for protected classes and special protections for employees who have been sexually harassed;…

Read More Legislature Passes Sweeping Amendments to NYS Human Rights Law

The New York State legislature is in the process of reviewing/amending the New York State Human Rights Law regarding sexual harassment. The bill(s) under consideration are S3817A / A7083A. Currently, victims of sexual harassment in New York City enjoy protection under three statutes: Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (federal law), the…

Read More Proposed Changes to New York State’s Sexual Harassment Law

The New York City Council recently passed a Local Law, Int. 1445-2019, that will ban pre-employment testing for marijuana usage. Specifically, it amends sections 8-102 and 8-107 of the New York City Administrative Code. The Council summarizes the legislation as follows: This proposed bill would prohibit New York City employers from requiring a prospective employee…

Read More NYC Council Bans Marijuana Testing of Prospective Employees