Latest Developments in Employment Law
C l i e n t   A l e r t


November, 2014 
 

Amendment to Act No. 115:
Anti-Retaliation in Employment Covers Internal Complaints, Claims and Grievances

On September 29, 2014 the Assembly Legislature of Puerto Rico amended Articles 1(b) and 2(a) of Law No. 115 of December 20, 1991 commonly known as "Law of Retaliation against an Employee for Providing Testimony."  The amendment expands the reach of protection offered to employees who file internal complaints, claims and grievances against their employer.

 

Previous to this amendment, protection under the Law No. 115 only applied to employees who offered testimony or information before a legislative, judicial, or administrative forum. However, after the amendment, Law No. 115 expands its protection to employees who offer testimony, information, or expression through internal company procedures (such as those established by the Human Resources Department) and/or before any employee or representative with authority. In other words, no employer may discharge, threaten, or discriminate against an employee because the employee"offers or intend to offer, verbally or in writing, any testimony, information or expression before:" 

 

  • A legislative, administrative, or judicial forum in Puerto Rico;
  • Within internal procedures established by the Company; or
  • Any employee or representative with authority.
  •  

    Law No. 80 does not exclude domestic workers

     

    The Puerto Rico Supreme Court in Romero v. Cabrer Roig, 2014 TSPR 115 decided that Law No. 80 (Unjust Dismissal) does not exclude from its application persons engaged to provide domestic services to individuals in their homes. Therefore, this particular group of workers could be given protections afforded by Law No. 80 depending on whether these people render their services as employees or independent contractors. To determine that there is an employee-employer relationship it is necessary to conduct a balanced analysis, depending on the particular circumstances of each case and the criteria by our case law allowing a judge distinguish between an employee and an independent contractor. The presumption will be that the domestic worker is an employee.

    Attorneys - Labor & Employment Law Department
    Luis F. Antonetti-Zequeira
    Vicente J. Antonetti-Zequeira
    Angel Berberena-Feliciano
    Jos� J. Fas-Qui�ones
    Amelia Fortu�o-Ruiz
    Elizabeth M. Lizardi-M�ndez
    Cenia M. Mercado-Santana
    Luis D. Ortiz-Abreu
    Howard Pravda
    Francisco M. Ram�rez-Rivera
    Jorge Rodr�guez-Micheo
    Javier G. V�zquez-Segarra
    787.759.4111
    787.759.4112
    787.759.4143
    787.759.4156
    787.759.4231
    787.759.4115
    787.759.4130
    787.759.4110
    787.759.4101
    787.759.4132
    787.759.4102
    787.759.4113
    lantonetti@gaclaw.com
    vantonetti@gaclaw.com
    aberberena@gaclaw.com
    jose.fas@gaclaw.com
    afortuno@gaclaw.com
    elizardi@gaclaw.com
    cmercado@gaclaw.com
    lortiz@gaclaw.com
    hpravda@gaclaw.com
    framirez@gaclaw.com
    jrodriguez@gaclaw.com
    jvazquez@gaclaw.com

    We at Goldman remain committed in assisting you and your business to adjust to these changes in the Law. For further information you may contact Luis F. Antonetti, Esq. or any of the attorneys in the Labor & Employment Law Department.


     
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