Ryan Kunkel

Ryan Kunkel

Ryan Kunkel is an associate in Stoel Rives’ Portland office.  He is a member of the firm’s Labor & Employment Group and concentrates his practice on traditional labor issues and employment litigation and counseling.

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Oregon Legislature’s Attempt to Protect Pot Users Poses Challenges to Employers

Some Oregonians are no doubt breathing clouds of relief with the introduction of Senate Bill 301, the Oregon Legislature’s proposal to protect employees from being fired for personal marijuana use.  Employers, on the other hand, may find themselves in a sticky (icky) situation trying to comply with the proposed law, which, at first glance, seems … Continue Reading

New Drug Testing Rules in Oregon Follow OSHA

Employers are probably aware that OSHA’s new drug testing and anti-retaliation rule is now in effect. (See our post here discussing the rule.)  However, as we blogged previously, many states have their own reporting requirements, which are not required to track OSHA’s  rules precisely, but which must be “at least as effective” as OSHA’s rules. … Continue Reading

Breaking News: DOL Salary Rule Blocked By Federal Judge

The Department of Labor’s controversial rule that required “white collar” employees to be paid at least $47,476 per year in order to be exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act will NOT go into effect on December 1, 2016 as planned.  A Texas federal judge on Tuesday agreed with 21 states that a nationwide preliminary … Continue Reading

Labor & Employment Law Under President-Elect Trump

In the wake of the election results, the question on everyone’s mind now is: What impact will President-Elect Trump have on employers?  Trump has thus far given few details on his thoughts on labor and employment.  But with Republicans maintaining control of Congress, employers could see a lot of changes in the next couple of … Continue Reading

Are You Ready for the December 1 Deadline for New Salary Requirements?

The Department of Labor’s new rule that doubles the salary threshold for “white collar” exempt employees goes into effect December 1, 2016.  Under that rule, employees currently exempt under the FLSA as an administrative, executive, or professional employee must make a salary of at least $47,476 and meet the appropriate “duties test” in order to remain exempt … Continue Reading

Class Action Waivers in Employment Agreements Are No Longer Enforceable in the Ninth Circuit

If your company uses a class action waiver in your employment agreements and you are located in Alaska, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, the Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon, or Washington, you are out of luck.  Thanks to a recent decision from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (which has jurisdiction over the aforementioned … Continue Reading

NLRB Reverses Course Again: Organizing Temporary Workers Just Got Easier

The NLRB recently reversed course again to allow temporary employees provided by a staffing agency to join regular employees in a single bargaining unit without the consent of the employer or the staffing agency. Miller & Anderson, Inc., 364 NLRB No. 39 (2016). The Board Flip Flops Historically, unions seeking to organize employees directly employed … Continue Reading

OSHA Promotes Workplace Safety by . . . Limiting Drug and Alcohol Testing?

Employers that promote workplace safety by ensuring workers are not under the influence of drugs or alcohol after they suffer a workplace injury will soon face greater scrutiny from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”).  A new OSHA rule that goes into effect August 10, 2016 casts serious doubt on whether employers can lawfully … Continue Reading

DOL Imposes New Exempt Salary Requirement on Employers

We knew it was coming, and – while business groups fought hard against it – the much-anticipated Department of Labor Final Rule regarding “white collar” exemptions from minimum wage and overtime requirements is now a reality. The rule, announced by the White House on Twitter last evening, imposes a major increase in the salary threshold … Continue Reading

It’s a Trap!  Students Receiving Credit Need Not Be Paid? 

As colleges and universities begin new terms, not all students are returning to the classroom.  Some students are headed into the “real world,” to work alongside corporate titans, small-business owners, or moms and pops in their shops, while receiving academic credit—and not wages—for their efforts.  These students are applying the lessons learned in their prior … Continue Reading

EEOC Promotes Gender Equality by Imposing Another Burden on Employers

Employers with 100 or more employees take note: a major new reporting requirement may be coming your way next year. On January 29, 2016, President Obama announced that beginning in September 2017, employers  with 100 or more employees must report the earnings and hours worked for all of their employees.  That’s right.  Employers must disclose … Continue Reading

What Employers Can and Cannot Say During a Union Organizing Campaign

Employers probably are aware of the “quickie” election rules implemented earlier this year by the National Labor Relations Board (“the Board”), but they may not have considered all of the rules’ consequences. With as little as 15 to 20 days to respond to an organizing drive, employers must be prepared to educate employees about the … Continue Reading
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