Now into the second half of 2018, corporate boards of directors should be focused on some key employment law developments that have transpired so far this year. While there are many recent developments in the employment law sphere, the five issues discussed below are some of the most notable and important for boards to focus on as they consider company policies and procedures. These issues touch on areas like compensable time for hourly employees, employee classifications, arbitrations, #MeToo, and religion in the workplace—areas all directors should be familiar with in order to manage the day to day affairs of the company and mitigate potential risk. Below are the employment law developments sophisticated corporate boards need to consider before the year ends.

(1) Review “De Minimis” Off-the-Clock Work

In Troester v. Starbucks Corp., the California Supreme Court held that employers must compensate California workers for the time they spend on certain routine tasks after clocking out, and rejected application of the federal de minimis doctrine. The Supreme Court noted that California employers bear the burden of instituting appropriate practices to prevent off-the-clock work. The Court concluded that, under California law, an “employer that requires its employees to work minutes off the clock on a regular basis or as a regular feature of the job may not evade the obligation to compensate the employee for that time by invoking the de minimis doctrine.” This is because, as the Court noted, “a few extra minutes of work each day can add up.”

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