In a favorable decision for retailers, a California federal court judge scaled back a proposed class action seeking to bring nationwide class claims. Plaintiff Todd Carpenter alleged that he bought a rodent habitat at a California PetSmart and that the habitat was defective in such a way that his rodents were able to chew through and escape. He filed a class action in the US District Court for the Southern District of California for violations of California consumer protection laws, violation of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act and common law fraud. The plaintiff sought to represent a nationwide class consisting of all purchasers of the rodent habitat along with a California subclass. PetSmart moved to strike the nationwide class on the grounds that the court lacked personal jurisdiction over PetSmart with respect to the nationwide class.
Continue Reading Federal Judge Scales Back Nationwide Class Claims in Case of Escaping Gerbils

Imagine a future in which Artificial Intelligence (AI) does the recruiting and hiring at US companies. Every new hire will be the uniquely perfect candidate whose skills, personality, presence, temperament and work habits are a flawless match for the job. Performance management and poor performance become extinct, relics from an age in which humans brought primitive instincts, biases and flawed intuition to hiring and employment decisions. While there are risks and challenges to employers in introducing this technology, manufacturers of AI software say that some version of that future may not be too far off.
Continue Reading Illinois Enacts AI Interview Law Amid an International Trend Toward Regulation

California is the land of employment legislation, and 2018 is shaping up to be another year of change. We are less than six months into the year, and already several bills that could significantly impact California businesses—for better or for worse—are pending in the California legislature.
Continue Reading Brace for Impact: Wave of Employment Bills Pending in California

Earlier this month, San Francisco amended its Fair Chance Ordinance, the city and county’s so-called ban-the-box legislation that limits how private employers can use an applicant’s criminal history in employment decisions. The amendments, which take effect on October 1, 2018, expand the scope and penalties of the San Francisco ordinance and add to the growing framework of ban-the-box legislation across California.
Continue Reading San Francisco Sharpens the Teeth of Its “Ban-the-Box” Ordinance

In June, new laws will go into effect that restrict employers’ ability to request and use criminal history information about applicants in three jurisdictions: Kansas City, Missouri; the State of Washington; and the city of Spokane, Washington. Continue reading for summaries of the new restrictions and links to the laws.
Continue Reading June Will Bring New Ban-the-Box and Fair Chance Laws

Last week, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, sitting en banc, became the second federal appellate court to officially recognize a discrimination claim under Title VII based solely on the plaintiff’s sexual orientation.
Continue Reading Circuit Courts Recognize Employment Protections for Sexual Orientation Under Title VII