Blog


Does the NLRA Protect “Negative Attitudes” in the Workplace?

Employment

On November 3rd, a former employee of Trader Joe’s filed a charge with the National Labor Relations Board Regional Office in New York for violating the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).  Trader Joe’s alleged unfair labor practice?  Firing an employee who had been repeatedly warned about his overly negative attitude.  This Trader Joe’s store is […]


Emma Kazaryan

Defeat of the Non-Compete

Employment

When I was in high school, I worked part-time at a clothing store that had a fantastic employee discount.  How great would it be, high-school-me mused, to capitalize on employee discounts at all my favorite stores by getting several jobs at the mall.  There was only one problem: when I started my job at the […]


Emma Kazaryan

The Scariest Costume on Halloween is One Worn in the Workplace

Employment

Some employers allow employees to wear costumes on Halloween as a treat; unfortunately, it can turn into a trick-y situation.  Halloween costumes can often be either gory, racy, or offensive: any of the three should scare employers. Employers can be liable for costumes that make fun of protected characteristics such as disability status, race, or […]


Domain Name Disputes – Protect Your Online Turf

Intellectual Property

In a recent case, an individual in Guangzhou, China registered the domain names <walgereens.com> and <walgreene.com> with an internet registrar.  The websites at the disputed domain names displayed the message “Redirecting” before taking users to various, unrelated websites, including the legitimate website at “www.walgreens.com”. Each time a user typed in the URL a different website […]


Lauren Parris Watts

Changes to Scheduling for Seattle “On-Call” Workers

Employment

Following in the footsteps of San Francisco,  the Seattle City Council unanimously passed a “secure scheduling” law to regulate how large retailers and food-service employers schedule their workers. As we advised last month, the new law will apply to large retailers and fast-food, coffee and drinking establishments with 500 or more employees worldwide, as well […]


Lauren Parris Watts

Statewide Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave: What You Should Know

Employment

The Presidential election is not the only reason to go to the polls this November. There are many non-Presidential candidates as well as issues on this year’s ballot, including Initiative 1433—a statewide initiative on minimum wage and paid sick leave. I-1433 is a labor-backed initiative aimed at: (1) raising Washington state’s minimum wage to $13.50 […]


Lauren Parris Watts

Taking Care of Your Loved Ones with a Caretaker Agreement

Employment

The person providing personal, in-home senior or adult care for your loved ones is considered a domestic employee, and it is important that you memorialize his or her duties and responsibilities as well as the terms of employment (e.g. duties, compensation, benefits, transportation, etc.) in an employment contract. Domestic employees come with many potential issues […]


Laura Hoexter

Will Valuation Discounts for Family-Controlled Entities be Eliminated?

Business, Estate Planning and Probate, Wealth Transfer

Many families establish Family Limited Partnerships (FLPs) or Limited Liability Companies (LLCs) and then gift interests in these entities to their children.  In doing so, they take advantage of valuation discounts (discounts for the lack of marketability of a family-controlled entity and for minority interests), and pass significantly more value than could be claimed for […]


Laura Hoexter

Washington State’s New Digital Assets Act

Estate Planning and Probate

Washington State recently passed a new law regarding fiduciaries and digital assets.  In general, a fiduciary is a person who “steps into your shoes” if you become incapacitated or die. Examples are an Attorney-in-Fact under a Power of Attorney, or a Personal Representative (sometimes called an Executor).  Digital assets are files and information stored in […]