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January 20, 2020

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”) and its 2009 Amendment and implementing regulations are a source of continuing compliance issues for health care providers and their business associates.  It is more likely than not that your organization will eventually experience a data breach.  The question is whether your organization will be prepared for the potential consequences.

Before delving further, it is worth noting that a breach should not be synonymous with blame or wrongdoing.  A breach under HIPAA is defined as “the acquisition, access, use, or disclosure of protected health information [“PHI”]  in a manner not permitted [under the HIPAA Privacy Rule] whic...

January 10, 2020

In the final days of 2019, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act was signed into law.

October 1, 2019

On June 14, 2019, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the “Statewide Housing Security and Tenant Protection Act of 2019” (“Act”). The Act dramatically changes existing landlord-tenant laws and extends and expands tenant rights and protections throughout the State of New York. The list below highlights some of the major changes to come from the Act. On October 12, 2019 the entirety of the Act will be in effect.

A sampling of the changes and additions to the law under this Act include, but are not limited to:

  • Prohibition of a landlord’s refusal to rent to a prospective tenant for their past or pending involvement in eviction proceedings.

  • Prohibition of a landlord f...

September 26, 2019

On September 24, 2019, the United States Department of Labor (DOL) issued its long-awaited final rule regarding the annual salary threshold for executive, administrative and professional (EAP) employees to qualify for overtime exemption under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).   

The final rule is effective as of January 1, 2020

Under the final rule, employees covered by the FLSA are now subject to the following exemption requirements: 

  • The minimum salary required for an EAP employee to qualify as exempt from overtime would increase from the currently enforced level of $455 to $684 per week ($35,568 annually).  This increase is lower than the $47,476 annual salary proposed by...

September 26, 2019

Large, high profile data breaches involving consumer information have been part of the news cycle for a decade and more.  Everything from the world’s largest companies to government agencies and local businesses have been victims of hacks, employee misconduct, and accidental disclosures.  Legislatures are responding.  The SHIELD Act is New York’s latest response.

In 2005, New York passed the Information Security Breach and Notification Act.  The SHIELD Act amends the 2005 law, modernizing and expanding upon it.  The SHIELD Act takes effect in two parts.  The first part, concerning data breach notification, takes effect October 23, 2019, and the second part, concerning data security,...

May 30, 2019

On March 7, 2019, the United States Department of Labor (DOL) announced a proposed rule that would increase the salary threshold for exempt employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Under the currently-enforced law, employees with a salary below $455 per week ($23,660 annually) must be paid overtime if they work more than 40 hours per week. Workers making at least this salary level may be exempt from overtime based on their job duties. This salary level was set back in 2004.

Under the current proposal, the exemption requirements would be subject to the following changes:

  • The minimum salary required for an employee to qualify as exempt from overtime would increase from the curre...

May 29, 2019

On April 1, 2019, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced amendments to New York State Election Law § 3-110. Effective immediately, employers must allow all employees who are registered voters up to three (3) hours of paid time off to vote during “any election” regardless of their schedule. The law no longer requires registered voters to have “sufficient time outside his [or her] working hours to vote.” The law still permits employers to designate whether the time off to vote should be taken at the beginning or end of the employee’s working shift. The employer and the employee may also mutually agree upon a different time during the employee’s working shift for the employee to vote. For example, the...

January 29, 2019

     This year, our attorneys once again attended the annual meeting of the NYSBA Health Law Section in New York City. Dennis Rosen, the New York State Medicaid Inspector General, and Brendan Stewart, assistant U.S. Attorney and the chief of the criminal health care fraud unit for the Eastern District of New York, presented on the recent efforts and future plans of their agencies to identify and reduce health care fraud.

      Unlike the U.S. Attorney’s office, New York’s OMIG is an oversight agency, not a prosecutorial agency, and the difference in approaches by these two agencies to fraud and abuse were on full display. OMIG takes a broad view of compliance and abuse and emphasize...

October 3, 2018

     On October 1, 2018, the New York State Department of Labor released the final guidance on the new sexual harassment law that requires all employers adopt a written sexual harassment policy, complaint form and implement a training program. The final guidance and model forms can be found on the Department’s website at:

     Employers must have a legally compliant written sexual harassment policy and complaint form in place no later than October 9, 2018 and all employees must receive sexual harassment training by October 9, 2019 (and on an annual basis thereafter, with new hires receiving sexual harassment trainin...

September 21, 2018

Protecting the Financial Identities of the Vulnerable

             The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) has announced that starting on September 21, 2018, credit freezes will be free from each of the three nationwide credit reporting agencies (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion).  This comes after several high-profile security breaches at popular retailers and financial institutions.  Formerly, nominal per-person charges were assessed by each credit reporting agency for freezing, and then again for thawing, credit files.  These fees, when compounded across each of the three reporting agencies and each member of a household, lead to charges which may have discouraged participation in these progr...

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