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DOL Finalizes Increased Salary Requirements for White Collar Workers

In order to be exempt from overtime under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), white collar workers generally must satisfy both the "salary basis" and "duties" tests. In July 2015, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued a notice of Proposed…
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Major Changes to DOL Fiduciary Investment Adviser Definition and Prohibited Transaction Exemptions

On April 6, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (the "DOL") issued final regulations redefining fiduciary investment advice for ERISA-covered employee benefit plans and individual retirement accounts ("IRAs"). The final rule significantly expands the…
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Employers Can't Discontinue Health Insurance During OFLA Leave

With so many sweeping changes to Oregon employment laws taking effect in 2016, one minor but important change to OFLA has the potential to be overlooked. Until this year, employers were free to cease providing employment benefits if an employee was…
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USCIS Announces FY2017 H-1B Cap Reached

On April 7, 2016, USCIS announced that the H-1B cap for fiscal year 2017 was reached within the five business day filing window running from April 1 to April 7, 2016. This includes both the U.S. advanced degree cap preference limit of 20,000 visas…
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New 24-Month STEM OPT Rule

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security recently announced a final rule extending optional practical training (OPT) to 24 months for F-1 international students with eligible STEM degrees (science, technology, engineering, and math). OPT is a…
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Oregon's Minimum Wage Increase

Beginning July 1, 2016, Oregon's minimum wage will increase to $9.75 per hour, and it doesn't stop there. Oregon is the first state to implement a tiered minimum wage system that sets different hourly rates in different parts of the state. The…
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IRS Issues Alert on Email "Phishing" Scheme

The IRS has issued an alert to payroll and human resources professionals who are the targeted victims of an emerging phishing email scheme. These "spoofing" emails appear to be addressed from company executives and specifically request payroll data…
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The New "Ban the Box" Rules for Job Applicants

The new year is upon us and so too are many new laws that the Oregon legislature has enacted. New laws that went into effect on January 1, 2016 include: Oregon's "Ban the Box" law; state-wide Oregon paid sick leave; changes to Oregon's noncompetition…
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New (Cap) H-1B Filings - April 1 Deadline

April 1 through 7, 2016 is the deadline for new H-1B petitions to be filed under the USCIS H-1B quota. We recommend that employers review upcoming hiring needs and determine as soon as possible if the company needs to file any new H-1B petitions…
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Exempt from Overtime? Maybe Not - The Rules Are Changing

On March 13, 2014, President Obama signed a Presidential Memorandum directing the Department of Labor (Department or DOL) to update the regulations for the "white collar exemptions" to overtime. In response, the DOL issued a Notice of Proposed…
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NLRB Limits Ability of Employers to Ban Use of Cameras in Workplace

The NLRB has extended Section 7 to limit the ability of employers to ban the use of cameras (including those on phones) in the workplace. Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) gives employees the right to form, join, support, or assist…
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Diversity Lottery 2017 Open October 1 to November 3!

The U.S. Department of State has announced registration dates for the Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery 2017 (DV-2017). Online registration for the Diversity Lottery will be accepted beginning October 1, 2015 at noon EDT (GMT -4) until November 3…
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KBR, Inc. Settlement Prompts SEC Initiative for Whistleblowers Protection

Due to a recent enforcement action by the SEC, companies in the financial services industry are now on alert of potential SEC action against employers for including confidentiality clauses in employment-related agreements that restrict employees from…
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Oregon Senate Passes Brownfields Land Bank Bill

By a vote of 26-2, the Oregon Senate passed the "Brownfields Land Bank Bill" today. HB 2734 had previously passed the House with a vote of 43-15. The bill now heads to the Governor's office for signature. With the enactment of the Brownfields Land…
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Technical Difficulties Cause Delay in Nonimmigrant Visa Processing at U.S. Consulates and Embassies Worldwide

The U.S. Department of State (DOS), Bureau of Consular Affairs is currently experiencing technical problems with its visa system which has resulted in delays in printing visas and may mean rescheduling visa interviews. This issue is not specific to…
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DOL Proposes Major Changes to Investment Adviser "Fiduciary" Definition

On April 14, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (the "DOL") issued proposed regulations redefining who is a "fiduciary" of an employee benefit plan under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA") as a result of giving investment…
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Temporary Suspension of Premium Processing of Extension of Stay H-1B Petitions

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it will temporarily suspend its premium processing service for all H-1B Petitions requesting an Extension of Stay (including amendment and change of employer requests). The temporary…
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USCIS Announces FY2016 H-1B Cap Reached

On April 7, 2015, USCIS announced that the H-1B cap for fiscal year 2016 was reached within the five business day filing window running from April 1 to April 7, 2015. This includes both the U.S. advanced degree cap preference limit of 20,000 visas…
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Employment Authorization for Certain H-4 Spouses

To help U.S. businesses retain highly-skilled workers, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has issued a final rule providing employment authorization eligibility to certain H-4 spouses. Beginning May 26, 2015, certain H-4 spouses of…
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New (Cap) H-1B Filings: April 1 Deadline

April 1 through 7, 2015 is the deadline for new H-1B petitions to be filed under the USCIS H-1B quota (assuming, as in the past, that the H-1B quota will be immediately exhausted). We recommend that employers review upcoming hiring needs and…
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