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The New Jersey Division on Civil Rights (DCR) recently adopted new and amended regulations concerning the “Display of Official Posters of the Division on Civil Rights.” Under these regulations, covered employers must display revised posters advising employees of their rights under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (“LAD”) and the New Jersey Family Leave Act (“FLA”). Both the LAD and FLA posters must be printed on 8 ½” by 11″ paper (or larger) and contain text that is fully legible. The official posters can be found on the DCR’s website located here and here. Employers should immediately replace their now outdated LAD and FLA posters with the updated ones.

New electronic posting option: The new regulations now expressly allow employers to satisfy the posting requirement by displaying posters electronically on an internet or intranet site accessible to all employees. Additionally, the new regulations require employers to distribute the updated posters annually on or before December 31st and upon an employee’s first request.

Additional posting requirements: As a reminder, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development also requires employers to display posters regarding child labor, workers’ compensation, wage and hour rules, payment of wages, unemployment insurance, temporary disability benefits, the Conscientious Employee Protection Act (CEPA), family leave insurance, records, the SAFE Act (if you have 20 or more employees), gender equity (if you have 50 or more employees), paid sick leave, and worker misclassification.

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As a featured guest on Plastic Surgery Practice’s podcast, Setting Up a New Location? Tips for Leasing or Buying, Kerry Cahill, Esq. discusses her thoughts on the establishment of new sites for healthcare practitioners.

Sellers want to maximize their profit on the sale of the property, and, as a result, the practitioners must make competitive offers. For the practitioners who are receiving financing, the mortgage obligations may commence before the practice is physically up and running. As a result, the practitioners must ensure they have enough capital during the fit out period to cover any mortgage, tax, insurance, utility, and repair obligations.

Listen to the full podcast on Plastic Surgery Practice.

Be open and listen. The skill of opening the ears, putting down the phone, and actually listening is something that we all can work on…

Nicole A. Kobis, Esq., partner in Lindabury’s Divorce and Family Law Practice Group, discusses her thoughts on how to lead and succeed in today’s constantly evolving world as a featured guest on Lawline’s Lawyers Who Lead Podcast, with host Sigalle Barness.

Lindabury, McCormick, Estabrook & Cooper, P.C. is please to announce that 15 of the firm’s have been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2023.

  • Steven Backfisch was recognized as Best Lawyer in America for Litigation in Labor & Employment.
  • John R. Blasi was recognized as Best Lawyer in America for Trust & Estates.

COVID-19, inflation, politics, and an impending recession: it is indisputable that the last two years have had an indelible effect on the healthcare industry. Acute care providers, in particular, have faced a plethora of economic challenges, including increasing costs for drugs and medical devices. However, on June 15, 2022, in American Hospital Association v. Becerra, Secretary of Health and Human Services, 142 S.Ct. 1896 (2022), the American Hospital Association (AHA) secured a win for 340B hospitals—often referred to as safety net hospitals—by successfully challenging the Department of Health and Human Services’ (DHHS) calculation of reimbursement rates. As a result, the Becerra court affirmed that DHHS was not statutorily authorized to vary reimbursement rates for different hospital groups; DHHS’s power to increase or decrease the price is distinct from its power to set different rates for different groups of hospitals. Id. As a result, the Becerra decision has far-reaching implications for acute care providers who provide services to uninsured, underinsured, and rural communities.

Legislative Backdrop

In order to appreciate the impact of Becerra, it is imperative to have a general understanding of the evolution of the regulatory landscape for healthcare providers. During the nineteenth century, acute care was generally provided in the homes of the wealthy or through benevolent institutions, including voluntary, religious, and public or governmental institutions. Generally, the Wilson-Gorman Tariff Act of 1894 applied to these early acute care providers, which provided that charitable organizations should enjoy tax-exempt status, provided they operate for charitable purposes.

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Early in the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued guidance clearing the way for all employers to mandate COVID-19 viral testing for all employees without the need for any individualized justification or assessment. The health risks posed by the virus at that time prompted the agency to conclude that the health emergency trumped the Americans with Disabilities Act’s prohibition against medical testing that was not “job related and consistent with business necessity.”

The Heightened “job Related and Consistent with Business Necessity” Requirement.   In a hopeful sign that the COVID-19 pandemic may be waning, on July 12, 2022, the EEOC revised its mandatory testing guidance to now require employers to assess whether current pandemic circumstances and individual workplace circumstances justify COVID 19 testing of employees to prevent workplace transmission. The EEOC cautioned that the reinstitution of the “job related and consistent with business necessity” standard “is not meant to suggest that such testing is or is not warranted; rather, the revised [guidance] acknowledges that evolving pandemic circumstances will require an individualized assessment by employers to determine whether such testing is warranted.”

The updated guidance lists the following possible factors that an employer may want to consider during the assessment to satisfy the heightened standard:

It has been a routinely held belief among estate planners that a Revocable Living Trust is not necessary for New Jersey residents. The purpose of this article is to identify those situations in which a Revocable Living Trust can be beneficial for residents of New Jersey.

Most commonly, we hear that assets held in a Revocable Living Trust during one’s lifetime, will, at the time of death, avoid probate. Fortunately for New Jersey residents, probate is not an onerous, time-consuming, or expensive prospect. The probate process in New Jersey, which gives legal significance to the will and clothes the executor with court-approved authority, is a straightforward process often costing less than $300 and requiring little paperwork. It takes about two to three weeks to obtain Letters Testamentary, which formally authorize the executor to transact business on behalf of the estate. Other reasons often cited as benefits of a Revocable Living Trust (RLT) are privacy regarding one’s estate, and the elimination of death taxes. These reasons do not apply in New Jersey, because our probate process does not require an inventory disclosing estate assets, nor an accounting with the court listing estate income, expenses, and distributions to the beneficiaries. As for the assertion that RLTs save death taxes, this is simply not true, as all assets in an RLT are considered to be in the control of the grantor (the person who created the trust), and therefore includible in the grantor’s taxable estate.

There are, however, circumstances where an RLT is appropriate for a New Jersey resident. For example, an RLT can be a better way to:

A number of firm clients are interested in charitable giving, whether made during lifetime or upon death. The reasons behind the differing approaches are varied.

One of the benefits of a lifetime gift to charity is the immediate income tax deduction that may be available.1 Unlike lifetime gifts to charity, deathtime gifts are not deductible for income tax purposes, although they may be deductible for estate tax purposes.2 The federal estate tax is applicable to taxable estates in excess of $12.06-million, and as a result, generally taxpayers will benefit more from a lifetime gift to charity than a deathtime transfer.

Despite the potential tax benefits available to taxpayers through life gifts, there is a reason why taxpayers might prefer to make a gift at death rather than during lifetime. During lifetime it is difficult for an individual to predict how much they will need to support themselves. For that reason alone, many clients opt to provide their charitable gifts after death.

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While the war in Ukraine rages on, Good Samaritans are doing everything they can to help its people. Karolina A. Dehnhard, partner in Lindabury’s Family Law Group, speaks about her involvement with efforts to help Ukrainian orphans in Poland as a return guest on the New Jersey Morning Show.

As a Divorce Lawyer, I deal with family law issues all the time and some of the sensitive issues the we deal with are those of children, parenting, adoption, what happens with the kids. Imagine how lucky children are when they have even one parent. Now think about a situation where you have hundreds, if not, thousands of children living in over 650 orphanages in Ukraine, some of which have now been destroyed by the war, who have no one. So what we found over the last several weeks, is that many of these orphans have come into Poland and are now in our orphanages or care centers in our country but with that comes all these questions. Who’s responsible for these kids? Where’s the jurisdiction? Is it with Ukraine? Is it with Poland? We have now learned that adoptions have been suspended until the Russian war is over. So there are so many things to talk about, and one of the things we are going to do as lawyers, as judges, as philanthropists, is heading over there to lend a helping hand.

New Jersey has one of the most comprehensive statutes protecting employees against discrimination in the workplace. On October 5, 2021, Governor Murphy signed legislation expanding these protections even further by amending New Jersey’s Law Against Discrimination (“NJLAD”) to prohibit private-sector employers from discriminating against employees over the age of 70. Specifically, the legislation eliminates a provision of the NJLAD that previously permitted employers to refuse to hire or promote workers over the age of 70. It further expands the remedies available to an employee who is forced to retire due to age.

History of the NJLAD

The NJLAD, originally enacted in 1945, prohibits an employer from refusing to hire or employ, fire, or otherwise discriminate against an individual in compensation or other terms, conditions or privileges of employment based on the individual’s protected status. While not included in the original list of protected classes, in 1962 the NJLAD was amended to recognize age as a protected status. In 1985, the NJLAD was amended again to clarify that while employers were prohibited from terminating or demoting employees based on their age, they were nonetheless allowed to “refus[e] to accept employment or to promote any person over 70 years of age.” The 1985 amendment also limited the remedies available to employees forced to retire as a result of age to back pay only. While New Jersey continued to broaden the NJLAD and expand protections to a number of groups over the following years, the limited protections against age discrimination were never modified, thereby placing it on separate, inferior footing to the State’s other protected categories.

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