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Pay Ratio Disclosures are an Employee-Relations Opportunity … Really

Most companies are now devoting substantial resources and effort to ensuring compliance with the SEC’s new rules requiring disclosure of the ratio of the CEO’s and median employee’s respective annual total compensation. Because the disclosure is required for fiscal years beginning on or after January 1, 2017, calendar-year-end companies must include it in their upcoming … Continue Reading

The SEC Nixes Contractual Waivers of Whistleblower Recoveries

In April 2015, the SEC announced in a first-of-its-kind enforcement action that certain KBR, Inc. confidentiality agreements violated the whistleblower protections of the Dodd-Frank Act by requiring employees and former employees to first notify the company of a potential violation before contacting the SEC. (See this Doug’s Note.) In the past two weeks, the staff … Continue Reading

The NLRB Continues to Monitor Social Media Policies

According to this EmployNews report, the National Labor Relations Board continues to interpret the National Labor Relations Act to prohibit social media policies that restrict employees’ ability to publically complain about their working conditions, even when those communications may be disparaging to their employer. Most recently, Chipotle Mexican Grill bore the consequences of the NLRB’s efforts. … Continue Reading

Safeguarding a Whistleblower's Identity

Everyone knows that the Sarbanes-Oxley Act prohibits retaliation against whistleblowers. It may be less obvious, however, that merely disclosing a whistleblower’s identity can constitute prohibited retaliation. Nevertheless, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held exactly that in Halliburton, Inc. v. Administrative Review Board, United States Department of Labor. In Halliburton, an employee submitted a … Continue Reading

Loans to Executives! An Interesting Wrinkle on Restricted Stock

It’s no secret that aligning executive compensation with stockholder interests is one of the biggest challenges (or headaches) faced by compensation committees these days.  Most companies now include a significant equity component in their compensation package, and restricted stock has become the equity of choice for a variety of reasons I won’t get into here.… Continue Reading
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