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Moonlighting Laws in Massachusetts

Working on the side while doing full-time work is called “moonlighting.” Undeclared work is legal in the United States, but employers can prohibit it as a condition of employment in an employment contract or employee policy. Or they don`t ban it, but require you to disclose it/ask permission. Massachusetts is any state of employment, so basically “they can fire you if they don`t like anything about what you do,” whether in the employment contract or not, and the employment contract can essentially require anything that is not illegal as a condition of employment. Public sector employees may be subject to federal legislation and government regulations, depending on their position and classification. The sharing economy works, but we need effective laws to grow it: @theheraldsun Finally, consider that undeclared work can be tedious. If you are considering undeclared work, it is certainly advisable to check whether what you are planning violates your employer`s written guidelines or your own employment contracts. Even if it doesn`t violate a written policy, undeclared work can still be illegal (and sue you) if it violates a “duty of loyalty” to an employer – for example, if you use an employer`s ideas or clients to start your own business. Employers also have good reason to oppose undeclared work if it interferes with their business interests. For example, employers might want to prohibit workers from performing undeclared work for a competitor or even a related company. And they may want to prohibit workers from using company time or resources for secondary jobs. If undeclared work is not prohibited, choose a second job that is very different from your main job, just to avoid giving the impression that something bad is going on. Other employers strictly prohibit undeclared work. If you work for an employer that prohibits undeclared work and you get a second job, you could be fired.

Whether you`re an employee or an employer, it`s a good idea to talk to a labour lawyer about concerns about undeclared work. Clarifying your current rights can prevent lawsuits and other problems in the future. Although there is no specific law prohibiting undeclared work, it can be regulated by your employer`s policies. Employers` reactions to undeclared work are varied: some don`t care, others see it as a dismissal offence. Many employers have no problem with a second job, as long as the employee`s job performance remains strong and as long as nothing the employee does for an outside company interferes with the employer`s business interests. Here`s a link to a good blog post that covers these issues and more that can arise with undeclared work (bonus: written by a law firm with offices in Massachusetts.). Keep in mind that even if undeclared work is not prohibited by your company per se, it can become a problem (dismissable) in other ways: on the other hand, employers have every right to object to undeclared work if the employee`s performance suffers at his main job. In many cases, an employer can absolutely prohibit undeclared work. But it`s rarely a good idea. Banning someone from pursuing their dreams or taking a second job to support a family, even if it doesn`t really hurt the employer, can hurt morale and recruitment. If an employer fires someone for outside work that did not harm the business, a jury might later suspect that the employer was in fact motivated by some form of unlawful discrimination. If you are an employer, it is a good idea to have undeclared written work.

Such a policy can provide guidance to employees and facilitate disciplinary (or legal) action if an employee crosses the line. The latest iteration of the New Jersey legislature`s noncompete reform was introduced by the Senate (S2872) and Assembly (A1769) in August 2018. The proposed legislation would establish a 10-point test for determining the enforceability of a non-compete obligation, including temporal and geographic limitation requirements. It would also prohibit non-compete obligations for a wide range of workers, including all workers deemed “non-exempt” under the RSA, seasonal or temporary workers, independent contractors, paid and unpaid interns, minors under 18 years of age, workers who have been “dismissed or dismissed by action of the employer” without finding wrongdoing, and employees with less than one year`s seniority with an employer. In addition, like the Washington and Massachusetts non-compete laws, New Jersey`s proposed legislation would require the employer to pay the employee during the period of application and goes even further by requiring a 100% alignment of compensation and benefits during the application period. You may not want your employees to split their time, energy, and focus between employers other than you, and a “no undeclared work” policy may seem like the answer. However, without a legal obligation to bind them, your employees shouldn`t have to limit themselves to working in your store. Undeclared work rules must be specifically tailored so that they can prohibit work for competitors or impair an employee`s ability to do the work. If you have questions about the undeclared work rules for your manuals, contact a member of the Verrill Dana Work and Employment team.

An employee who is constantly late or unrelated to work may be terminated or disciplined, whether or not it is undeclared work. Thus, they can prohibit not only undeclared work, but also the use of the company`s time and resources in relation to jobs and secondary activities. Strictly speaking, if undeclared work is not prohibited, you do not have to inform your employer of a second job, provided the policy does not require disclosure and/or approval. #10: Improved remedies and penalties. The Washington attorney general can file a lawsuit on behalf of an injured person, or the injured person can file a private lawsuit.

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