Category Hospitality Law

Is Your Hotel Website ADA Compliant? Here’s Why It Matters

Achieving ADA website compliance simply means maintaining a set of web standards by ensuring that the website’s contents can be accessed in different ways, via screen readers, electronic devices that translate websites into speech and braille.

Numerous organizations have already been hit with hefty lawsuits siting ADA website noncompliance. With the US DOJ’s announcement to implement ADA regulations, expected in 2018, now is the time to get your website compliant.  Forbes Councils, Adam Deflorian, provides tips to help your hotel meet its ADA website compliance needs.

When the Americans with Disabilities Act first came into existence in 1990, few industries were affected more than the hotel industry...

Read More

California – OSHA and Transgender Rights Poster Updates

California has recently released two new laws that carry mandatory posting requirements with them. The new Transgender Rights and California OSHA Update posters must be displayed along with other required workplace notices in a prominent and accessible location in the workplace January 1, 2018. All employers must comply with the rulings.  Labor Law Center shares the update.

California has recently come out with two new labor compliance posters that employers will need to comply with as they begin 2018.

California OSHA Update:

The first poster is an update to the existing OSHA notice.  The updates to the poster include wording that is more distinct and clear in understanding the intent...

Read More

New Mexico Judge Dismisses 99 ADA Lawsuits as Fraudulent and Malicious Entertains Sanction Motions

Judge rejects 99 ADA lawsuits against businesses throughout Albuquerque, New Mexico. The lawsuits, labeled as malicious and filed in bad faith, are the result of online advertisements designed to lure disabled plaintiffs into filing ADA lawsuits and harass business defendants into settlements. The recommendation to dismiss the cases suggests the plaintiff may be liable for almost $40K in filing fees, and opens the door for the 99 affected businesses to request sanctions against the plaintiff’s lawyer. Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group report the facts.

On October 26, 2017, a judge dismissed 99 ADA lawsuits, ordered an in forma pauperis plaintiff  (a person without funds to pursue the cost of a lawsuit) to pay filing fees of $38,300 and authorized the defendants to ...

Read More

ADA In The Digital Age: Federal Court Strikes Down Inaccessible Website

If you haven’t already, add website accessibility to the growing list of unintended consequences of the ADA. Evolving definitions of what constitutes a physical or mental disability, senseless mandates, hefty compliance costs for business owners and waves of abusive litigation that have developed under ADA have proven that enforcement of the law is nothing more than a disaster that has lined the pockets of a small number of opportunist lawyers and their clients.

Clear rules for applying the ADA to websites have yet to be established leaving the door open for interpretation by the courts...

Read More

DHS Issues New Version of Form I-9 – Effective on September 18, 2017

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has released “another” revised Form I-9. All employers are required to use the new version to verify identity and employment authorization of new hires by September 18, 2017. Because of the recently revised form in November 2016, which was a major overhaul to previous documents, the changes in this version are not substantial. The National Review outlines changes to the current revision.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued yet another update to the Form I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification. This new version becomes mandatory for use with new hires and reverifications as of September 18, 2017.  This is the thirteenth revision of Form I-9 in the thirty years since the form was first required...

Read More

Cannabis Shift Impacting Employers

Legalized medicinal and recreational marijuana is on the rise. With vague and nearly silent guidelines, these state statues are open for interpretation by the courts leaving employers and employees treading unfamiliar and sticky territory. It would be wise for employers to keep a close eye on the emerging legal and regulatory compliance obligations. Risk & Insurance, Autumn Heisler, cites some recent and notable case decisions.

Decisions on marijuana policy are shifting, leaving employers concerned about maintaining safe and drug-free workplaces.

Marijuana policy made headlines twice in one week, on matters that may be potential game changers for employers.

On July 17, Massachusetts’ Supreme Judicial Court ruled in favor of a woman fired for using medical marijuana in Barbuto vs...

Read More

Lawyer recommends employers work with experts after class-action suit against Kroger subsidiary over biometric data

For the past five years or so, employers have turned to new technology for a more accurate and reliable source of employee time keeping,  to reduce fraud in the work force, to provide better security and limit access to sensitive work areas. Facial recognition, photo tagging, finger or palm prints, GPS tracking, and even DNA have become the technologies of choice, but not without a price.  Employees can challenge the use of biometrics and the storage of the biometric data, and they are – numbers are growing rapidly. Recent lawsuits have brought hefty fines to employers for improperly collecting and storing employee biometric data. Make sure you know the guidelines for biometric data use and storage in your area.  Cook County Record, John Meyers, reports one of the largest cases to date...

Read More

New York’s Plaza Hotel sued for alleged sexual harassment

Six former and current female employees are suing the iconic Plaza Hotel in New York City. Court documents cite male senior management and employees detailed and startling sexual misconduct and assault. The women argue they were forced to endure a barrage of egregious and unwanted sexual behavior from their superiors and employees while the hotel’s management turned a blind eye, shamed the women, and retaliated with suspension in some incidents. “While patrons enjoy the iconic culture of The Plaza, many of its female employees are forced to endure a culture of a different type – rape culture,” states the suit. The women are seeking unspecified damages. Hotel Management, Elliot Mest, discloses the complaint.

Much of the allegations center around the hotel’s bar, the “Palm Court.”
Read More

The hospitality industry’s lurking liability

Sex trafficking is everywhere! Are you doing enough to fight sex trafficking on your property? Are your employees turning a blind eye while girls and women are being imprisoned and forced into sex? Branded or unbranded, luxurious or economical, you may be the next hotel pulled into litigation surrounding activities taking place on your properties. As states across the country enact new or proposed law seeking to hold hotels directly liable for sex trafficking on their properties, hotel operators must act to prevent the crimes. Employees must be trained and alert to the activities taking place on your properties. Business Insurance, Louise Esola, discusses the growing allegations and concerns surrounding the matter.

The hospitality industry must rethink its approach to service, privac...

Read More

How to handle wage and labor investigations

As wage and hour investigations from the US Department of Labor (DOL) continue to rise, employers must be knowledgeable and prepared. It is important that employers do not underestimate the severity of a potential investigation. Conducting periodic recordkeeping and wage and hour self-audits are two preventive measures every employer should perform to minimize potential exposures that may be costly. If you’re facing an investigation, there are ways to minimize the negative consequences. Hotel Management, Alicia Hoisington, gives important insights to help you prepare for a Wage and Hour investigation.

Labor is one of the top expenses hoteliers face, and it doesn’t come without its own set of issues...

Read More