October 2016 Archives

Succession Planning: Confronting the "What's Next" Question in a Family Business

The "what's next" stage in the family business owner's life is challenging in that decisions have to be made in terms of succession to family members or selling the business and retiring. Yogi Berra would say that when you arrive at this fork in the road, "take it."

New Massachusetts Law Mandates Equal Pay For Comparable Work

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker recently signed into law a new statute designed to ensure that male and female employees are paid equally for comparable work. However, the new statute does not become effective until July 1, 2018. The so-called "Act to Establish Pay Equality" (the "Act") has both a laudable purpose and the potential to create a compliance nightmare for employers. Existing law already prohibits paying male and female employees differently for the same job. The Act goes further and prohibits pay discrimination between male and female employees performing different but "comparable work." The Act makes it clear that job titles are not dispositive of what constitutes comparable work. It defines comparable work as "work that is substantially similar in terms of skill, effort and responsibility and is performed in similar working conditions." While that may sound reasonable on its face, it is obviously subjective and the potential sanctions that may be levied upon employers who violate the Act are severe.

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