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We are pleased to share with you The Global Employer – Global Immigration & Mobility Quarterly Update, a collection of key updates from Brazil, Italy, Luxembourg, Singapore, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Click here to view.

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We are thrilled to announced that the latest edition of The Global Employer: Focus on Global Immigration & Mobility is now available! This handy, go-to desk reference guide includes:

  • An overview of key global immigration and mobility issues to consider related to immigration, employment, compensation and employee benefits, income taxes and social insurance, and global equity compensation.
  • An executive summary for 27 jurisdictional chapters identifying key government agencies, highlighting current compliance and enforcement trends, and describing short and long term visas appropriate for business travel, training and employment assignments. The handbook includes other can’t miss insights for global human resources and legal teams.

Click here to access now.

Baker McKenzie offers comprehensive legal advice related to global immigration – delivered locally around the world. We help employers plan and implement global transfers and provide on-site legal support to companies and employees in most major business communities around the globe. To know more, visit our Global Immigration & Mobility page or contact us here.

*Jurisdiction chapters available for Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Germany, Hong Kong SAR, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Myanmar, The Netherlands, Philippines, Poland, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, and Vietnam.


Global Employment & Compensation Resource Suite

Looking for additional resources to ensure your HR and legal counsel remain up-to-date on the latest employment law regulations globally?

Access our Global Employment & Compensation Practice Group’s full digital library of legal content on-demand.

The Global Employment & Compensation Resource Suite is a self-service database that provides our clients with 24/7 access to our global employment resources. Once registered, users can browse our range of Global Employer Handbooks, Blogs and Media, and Legal Updates.

Click here to request access.

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We’re bringing the world to you. Join Baker McKenzie for our annual Global Employment Law webinar series.

In the face of intensifying geopolitical risk and continuing economic uncertainty, the challenges for global employers to plan carefully and operate strategically to maintain a thriving workforce is greater than ever. We’ll help employers navigate those challenges in our four-part webinar series featuring Baker McKenzie Global Employment Law colleagues from the Americas, Asia Pacific, Europe, and the Middle East and Africa who will share legal updates and trends impacting US-based multinationals, and provide tips and best practices for your success. 

In each 60-minute discussion, we will explore:

  • The Local Political & Economic Climate
  • How Global Hot Topics Play Out Locally, highlighting developments in:
    • Noncompete Agreements
    • The Shifting ID&E Landscape
    • Labor Relations
    • AI in the Workplace
  • New Laws to Know
  • Action Items for Employers to Take Now (“To-Dos”)

Join us!

Registration Details

THE AMERICAS
Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Colombia and Mexico
Thursday, June 6, 2024
10 am PT/ 12 pm CT/ 1 pm ET
Click here to register for the Americas webinar.

ASIA PACIFIC
Australia, China, Japan, the Philippines, Singapore and Vietnam
Wednesday, June 12, 2024
3 pm PT/ 5 pm CT/ 6 pm ET
Click here to register for the APAC webinar.

EUROPE
France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and the United Kingdom
Thursday, June 20, 2024
9 am PT/ 11 am CT/ 12 pm ET
Click here to register for the Europe webinar.

THE MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
Egypt, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Türkiye and the United Arab Emirates
Wednesday, June 26, 2024
9 am PT/ 11 am CT/ 12 pm ET
Click here to register for the MEA webinar.

To view these programs in a different time zone, click here
Please “register” for a copy of the recording and materials if you are unable to attend live.

CLE Accreditation

Each program is approved for 1.0 general California CLE credit, 1.0 general Illinois CLE credit, and 1.0 professional practice New York CLE credit. Participants requesting credit for other states will receive Uniform CLE Certificates.

Each 1-hour program can be applied towards the 9 Substantive Hours of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) required by the Law Society of Ontario.

Baker & McKenzie LLP is a California and Illinois CLE approved provider. Baker & McKenzie LLP has been certified by the New York State CLE Board as an accredited provider in the state of New York. This program is appropriate for both experienced and newly admitted New York attorneys. 
 
**While CLE credit may be pre-approved in certain jurisdictions, final CLE accreditation approval is anticipated, but not guaranteed.

To view the complete roster of presenters for each regional program, click here

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On May 17, 2024 Colorado Governor Polis signed the landmark Colorado AI Act (Senate Bill 24-205) into law. Colorado is now the first US state with comprehensive AI regulation, adopting a classification system like the European Union’s recent AI Act. The law will take effect February 1, 2026

The law exempts small employers (fewer than fifty full-time employees) from some of its requirements but otherwise requires companies to take extensive measures to protect Colorado residents against harms such as algorithmic discrimination.

SB 205’s Details

SB 205 requires “developers” and “deployers” of “high-risk artificial intelligence systems” to use “reasonable care” to protect Colorado resident consumers from any known or reasonably foreseeable risks of “algorithmic discrimination.” As written, the law most likely applies to both creators of high-risk AI systems, as well as employers adopting high-risk AI technologies within their organization.  

Continue Reading From Brussels to Boulder: Colorado Enacts Comprehensive AI Law with Significant Obligations for Employers on the Heels of the EU AI Act
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This fall, California voters will have the opportunity to decide the fate of the state’s Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA). After receiving more than the 700,000 signatures in support, the “California Employee Civil Action Law and PAGA Repeal Initiative” has qualified for the November 5, 2024 state ballot. If the initiative passes, PAGA will be repealed and replaced with the “Fair Pay and Employer Accountability Act,” which will double the statutory and civil penalties for willful state labor law violations, require 100% of monetary penalties be awarded to employees, and provide resources to employers to ensure compliance with wage and hour laws. The new law will preclude plaintiffs’ attorneys from recovering any fees in actions brought under the statute and impose other requirements to effectively “de-deputize” citizen attorneys general.

What Would the New Law Do?

In response to wide ranging criticism of PAGA, the ballot initiative seeks to repeal and replace PAGA with the Fair Pay and Employer Accountability Act. If passed, the initiative would:

  • Double statutory and civil penalties for willful violations;
  • Award 100% of monetary penalties to employees (instead of the current 25%);
  • Provide resources to employers to ensure labor compliance and allow employers opportunities to cure violations without penalties;
  • Require that the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) be a party to all labor complaints;
  • Prohibit award of attorneys’ fees (which are currently permitted under PAGA); and
  • Require that the state legislature fully fund the DLSE to meet the division’s requirements by law.
Continue Reading Is the End in Sight for PAGA Actions? Californians May Vote “YES” on November 5, 2024.
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The regulatory landscape for immigration compliance is constantly evolving. To protect and keep top talent and to avoid tangles with the law, US multinational employers must stay on top of the latest legal decisions and guidance.

In this blog series, our team of Global Immigration and Mobility experts will share significant legal updates and practical strategies for maintaining compliance. In our first post, we highlight the possible implications of the SEC v. Jarkesy case for immigration courts, and highlight the DOJ’s recently-released Fact Sheet addressing I-9 compliance when using electronic platforms.

1. Challenge to the Validity of Administrative Judges Could Have a Major Impact on the DOJ’s Ability to Investigate Employers for Immigration Misconduct

    A case currently pending in the US Supreme Court could have high stakes for administrative law judges in the immigration context–and, depending on the outcome, could theoretically open the door for challenging the ability of the DOJ to investigate employers for immigration-based discrimination.

    Background

    On November 29, 2023, the US Supreme Court held oral argument in SEC v. Jarkesy. Jarkesy, an investment advisor, had been found guilty by an ALJ of securities law violations. As a result, he was fined, barred from securities industry activities, and his firm was required to repay investors. Jarkesy challenged the SEC’s enforcement action at the 5th Circuit, which agreed with Jarkesy, and the case was appealed to the Supreme Court. Notably, a core question before the Court is whether Congress’ decision to allow ALJs to be removed only for “good cause” violates Article II of the Constitution (requiring the President to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.”)

    Possible impact on ALJs responsible for deciding cases involving immigration-based discrimination by employers

    During oral arguments, conservative justices expressed doubts about the constitutionality of the SEC’s current process, where ALJs handle violations and defendants are not entitled to a jury trial.

    The arguments that could potentially weaken the authority of ALJs in the Jarkesy case–i.e., that defendants are unconstitutionally deprived of a jury trial when administrative judges address infractions–could also be extended to ALJs sitting within the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO), potentially depriving them of their ability to adjudicate cases. Defendants are already using this argument in ongoing cases in an effort to invalidate the DOJ’s immigration-related proceedings against them.

    If the Supreme Court’s decision leads to the removal of ALJs at the SEC, it is likely that the authority of ALJs at other agencies will face subsequent legal challenges, including enforcement actions brought against employers by the DOJ for allegations of: (i) citizenship-based discrimination; (ii) national-origin-based discrimination; (iii) document abuse (relating to I-9s); and (iv) retaliation.

    Continue Reading Beyond Borders: How US Multinational Employers Can Master Immigration Compliance
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    The FTC rule banning post-employment noncompetes was published in the Federal Register on May 7, which means the rule will take effect on September 4, 2024, unless pending lawsuits to void the rule are successful.

    Despite considerable uncertainty around when, or even whether, the rule will apply, employers should prepare now so as not to be caught flatfooted. The first step is to understand the rule’s parameters and potential impact on your business. Our FAQs guide you through the intricacies of the rule and the steps you should take while waiting for the lawsuits challenging the rule to be resolved.

    Application of the Rule to Workers

    1. Does the rule apply to B2B noncompetes?

    No, the FTC rule does not apply to business-to-business (B2B) noncompetes. Instead, existing federal antitrust laws should continue to be considered when evaluating B2B noncompetes.

    2. Does the rule apply to all workers?

    No, there are limited exceptions. First, the rule does not invalidate existing noncompete agreements (i.e. agreements entered into on or before the effective date of September 4, 2024) with “senior executives.” After that date, new noncompetes with all US employees will be prohibited.

    Senior executive” means a worker who received “total annual compensation” of at least $151,164 in the preceding year (or the equivalent amount when annualized if the worker was employed during only part of the year) and who is in a “policy-making position.”

    • “Total annual compensation” may include salary, commissions, nondiscretionary bonuses, and other nondiscretionary compensation earned during the preceding year, but does not include the cost of, or contributions to, fringe benefit programs.
    • Those in a “policy-making position” may include the President, CEO or equivalent, or others with “policy-making authority,” meaning “final authority to make policy decisions that control significant aspects of a business entity or common enterprise.” In the Supplementary Information to the rule (the FTC’s commentary on the rule), the Commission notes “many executives in what is often called the ‘C-suite’ will likely be senior executives if they are making decisions that have a significant impact on the business, such as important policies that affect most or all of the business. Partners in a business, such as physician partners of an independent physician practice, would also generally qualify as senior executives under the duties prong, assuming the partners have authority to make policy decisions about the business.”

    Second, the rule does not apply to workers outside of the United States. See FAQ 11 below.

    Continue Reading Thirteen Things You Didn’t Know About the FTC’s Noncompete Ban and Five Steps to Prepare Now in Case it Takes Effect
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    New York employers now have a big “to do” item for 2025. Starting January 1, 2025, New York employers will be required to provide employees with 20 hours of paid prenatal personal leave (PPPL) during any 52‑week calendar period in addition to paid sick and safe leave (PSSL). New York is the first state in the US to require employers to provide such leave.

    The new obligation results from Governor Hochul’s FY 2025 executive budget bill (A 8805), which passed April 20, 2024 and (among other things) amends New York Labor Law § 196-b (New York state’s paid sick and safe leave law). The new law does not change an employee’s entitlement to other leaves such as PSSL (which is 40 or 56 hours per year, depending on the size of the employer) and New York Paid Family Leave (which provides eligible employees job-protected, paid time off for reasons including to bond with a newborn, adopted or fostered child).

    Breaking down PPPL

    Who does this apply to?

    All employers in New York are required to provide PPPL to all pregnant employees.

    What type of leave is covered by PPPL?

    PPPL is leave taken for health care services received by an employee during their pregnancy or related to such pregnancy, including

    • Physical examinations
    • Medical procedures
    • Monitoring and testing, and
    • Discussions with a health care provider related to the pregnancy

    Does PPPL have to accrue before employees can take PPPL?

    No. Eligible employees can take all 20 hours of PPPL they are entitled to for the 52-week period starting the effective date of the new law–without waiting for PPPL to accrue.

    Are there certain increments for taking leave?

    Employees are permitted to take PPPL in hourly increments.

    How is PPPL paid?

    PPPL must be paid in hourly installments. Employers must pay employees for PPPL at the employee’s regular rate of pay, or the applicable minimum wage–whichever is greater.

    Continue Reading New York Employers’ New “To Do” Item for 2025: Provide Paid Prenatal Personal Leave Starting January 1
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    US legislators and regulators are unleashing new compliance requirements for global equity programs at a dizzying pace and many companies are struggling to keep up. Global equity programs remain essential to compete for and retain top talent, but are also quite complex to structure and manage due to rapidly shifting laws and regulations around the globe.

    While there’s no silver bullet to achieve one and forever done compliance with global equity plans, our “10 Best Practices for Global Equity Awards” paper and Best Practices Checklist share pragmatic advice to guide companies in creating and managing global equity award programs.

    We hope our complimentary resources help your team with some of the foundational issues and easiest ways to get tripped up. Since global equity offerings require continued care and attention, don’t hesitate to reach out to our award-winning global equity lawyers for further support.

    For more information on how to not just roll out a global equity program, but maintain compliance for the long haul, contact our Compensation team.

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    2023 was a landmark year for labor in the US, and 2024 is on track to keep up. Last year, the NLRB’s General Counsel was relentless in overturning precedential decisions and standards impacting both unionized and non-unionized employers. The result was an overall employee-friendly shift to labor laws encouraging both unionization and concerted employee actions impacting working conditions. Key developments included restricting confidentiality and non-disparagement clauses in employee severance agreements, and attacking certain restrictions in noncompete agreements.

    2024 is on pace to keep up the pressure on employers. For instance, since the Board’s August 2023 Stericycle, Inc. decision, administrative law judges have ruled that 26 employer rules or policies run afoul of the new legal test for work rules. In fact, ALJs have found fault with two-thirds of the rules that they’ve analyzed under the Stericycle framework.
     
    In this video, our Labor & Employment team break down the major developments in 2024 thus far, predict what’s next and share practical advice for guiding your company through the current employee-friendly labor landscape.

    Click here to view the video.