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Increasing Number of Cities and States Implementing Paid Leave Laws

April 14, 2016 – By Attorney Tara Swartz

The Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”) is a federal law that was passed in 1993. It provides benefits to millions of workers across the United States. Very generally, the FMLA provides employees with at least 1 year of service who work for companies with at least 50 employees up to 12 weeks per year of leave: 1) for the birth or adoption of a child; 2) for one’s own serious medical condition; 3) to care for a family member with a serious medical condition; and 4) for military families in a … Read More »


Employment Law 101: You Can Be Fired For a Good Reason, a Bad Reason, or No Reason At All, Just Not For an Unlawful Reason

By Attorney Tara Swartz –

I am frequently contacted by employees who tell me they have a ‘wrongful termination’ case and need a lawyer. I am told things such as their termination was unfair, or for no reason, or because their boss didn’t like them. There are stories of bad management, differing styles, favoritism, and nepotism. But when I delve deeper to determine if there are underlying other reasons for the termination (for example her boss didn’t like her…because she is a woman) I often come up empty. In turn, I find myself providing a lesson that I call Employment … Read More »


Attorney Tara Swartz 2015 Super Lawyer

Attorney Swartz has been selected for inclusion in the 2015 Massachusetts and New England Super Lawyers List. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a patented multiphase process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. The result is a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys. Only 5 percent of lawyers in each state are selected to the Super Lawyers list … Read More »


Department of Labor Wage Rule for Home Care Workers to be Implemented

The DOL’s Final Rule providing many home care workers protections under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) including the right to minimum wage and overtime is moving forward for implementation. While the rule was to become effective January 1, 2015, an association of providers of home care services challenged the rule in court in 2014. The Rule was not implemented during a lower court duel. After the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia upheld the rule in favor of the DOL, the association of home care workers sought a stay with the U.S. Supreme Court. Yesterday the … Read More »


Earned Sick Leave Update: Employees of Private Companies Contracting with the Federal Government are Now Entitled to Paid Sick Leave

By Attorney Tara Swartz –

President Barack Obama issued an Executive Order on Labor Day, 2015 extending the right to paid sick leave to employees across the country working for private companies who contract with the federal government. The new rule appears to extend similar benefits to employees of federal contractors as does Massachusetts’ Earned Sick Leave Law that became effective July 1, 2015.

It requires companies provide 1 hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours an employee works, up to at least 7 paid sick days per year. Allowable reasons to use accrued sick leave include: 1) … Read More »


Massachusetts’ New Earned Sick Leave Law

By Attorney Tara Swartz –

On July 1, 2015, the Massachusetts Earned Sick Leave Act, M.G.L. c. 149 § 148C, went into effect. The Act provides that all employees with a primary place of work in Massachusetts can earn and take up to 40 hours of sick time per calendar year.

Employers who have 11 more employees must provide paid sick leave. The pay must be at the employee’s then regular hourly rate and must be paid in the payroll cycle when the leave was taken. Smaller employers are not required to provide paid leave but they must still provide … Read More »


Internships – Should you be paid?

By Attorney Tara Swartz –

The question of whether an internship is appropriately unpaid as a learning opportunity or should be paid in accordance with the federal and state wage and hour laws has become a hot topic in recent years. At the end of the day the question is whether the interns are performing duties designed as a learning opportunity or more aptly classified as a job.

How federal labor laws classify internships

The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) broadly defines what it means to be an employee versus an intern. The FLSA discusses the issue of unpaid … Read More »


Workplace Protections for Victims of Domestic Violence

The Massachusetts Domestic Violence Act is an expansive law enacted in 2014 that in addition to instituting reforms throughout the criminal justice system and in other areas extends protections to victims of domestic violence and their family members in the workplace.

The law requires private and public employers with 50 or more employees to provide its employees who are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking or kidnapping or who have family members who are victims with 15 days of leave from work in any 12 month period. Qualifying reasons for such leave include: seeking or obtaining medical attention, counseling, … Read More »


Attorney Tara Swartz Super Lawyer 2014

Attorney Swartz has been selected for inclusion in the 2014 Massachusetts Super Lawyer List. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a patented multiphase process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. The result is a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys. Only 5 percent of lawyers in each state are selected to the Super Lawyers list and 2.5 percent … Read More »


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Swartz Law, LLC, represents employees in Boston, Massachusetts, and surrounding areas, including the cities of Amesbury, Andover, Avon, Belmont, Beverly, Boxford, Braintree, Brookline, Burlington, Cambridge, Canton, Carlisle, Cohasset, Concord, Danvers, Dedham, Dorchester, Dover, Franklin, Georgetown, Gloucester, Haverhill, Holbrook, Ipswich, North Hampton, Salem, Springfield and Worcester. We represent individuals in Suffolk County, Norfolk County, Essex County, Plymouth County, Middlesex County, Worcester County, Bristol County, Franklin County, Hampshire County and Berkshire County, and throughout the North and South Shores, the Cape and Islands, and central and western Massachusetts.