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In this regard, this blog is Part V of our series on “Remedies under Major New York Labor and Employment Laws.” In Part IV, we deliberated on the remedies available under both Disability Benefits Law & Paid Family Leave Benefits Law and noted that apart from compensatory and punitive damages, other remedies, including economic, attorney’s fees and costs, injunctive relief, and “other” damages are available under these laws.
Moving the discussion forward, this blog is titled “Remedies Available Under New York State Employment Relations Act” and is a review of the remedies available under the New York State Employment Relations Act, as codified under N.Y. Lab. Law §§ 700 et seq.
Remedies Available under New York State Employment Relations Act
To start with, pursuant to N.Y. Lab. Law § 706(3)(b), a prevailing party may recover back pay, which is usually awarded by the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) of New York. As we mentioned in Part II of the series, back pay is generally aimed at remedying any losses that a victim of a violation, such as harassment or discrimination, incurred before the specific violation took place.
Although it does not specify the recoverable compensatory damage, this law stipulates, as provided for under N.Y. Lab. Law § 706(3), that a prevailing party may be offered, to serve as compensatory damage, any remedy required to effectuate the act’s policies.
Similarly, as codified under N.Y. Lab. Law § 706(3), a prevailing party may be offered any remedy, amounting to punitive damage, required to effectuate the policies of the New York State Employment Relations Act.
Attorney’s Fees and Costs
However, unlike under other laws such as the NYSHRL, Disability Benefits Law, and Paid Family Benefits Law, there is no applicable state law through which an employee may recover compensatory damages under the New York State Employment Relations Act.
Nonetheless, injunctive relief constitutes a remedy available under this act. For instance, pursuant to N.Y. Lab. Law § 707(1), (4), a court may impose a restraining order or temporary relief. In our blog titled “Tips for Seeking Injunctive Relief (Temporary Restraining Orders)” and accessible through https://milettilaw.com/tips-for-seeking-injunctive-relief-temporary-restraining-orders/, we mentioned that usually sought as injunctive relief, a temporary relief creates time until a fuller opposition and an evidentiary record of the opposing party have been considered by a court of competent jurisdiction. On the same note, we also added that a temporary restraining order (abbreviated as TRO) generally requires a proposed order to demonstrate cause outlining a supporting memorandum of law, a sworn emergency affidavit from an individual with evidence or knowledge of the facts, and the injunctive relief sought.
In addition, pursuant to N.Y. Lab. Law § 706(3), with the aim of effectuating the policies of the New York State Employment Relations Act, affirmative or a range of other actions may be taken by PERB. Examples of these actions include, but are not limited to, (1) imposing a reinstatement order (whether back pay is provided or not) and (2) ordering the employer to refrain from and withdraw recognition from collective bargain with PERB.
Finally, pursuant to N.Y. Lab. law § 706(3), the opposing party may be served with a cease and desist order.
Lastly, pursuant to N.Y. Lab. Law § 709, a court may impose 12-year term imprisonment or a fine of up to $5000, or both.
In Part VI of the series and our blog titled “Remedies Available under the New York Professional Employer Act,” we will discuss the various remedies available under this act and as codified under N.Y. Lab. Law §§ 915 et seq.
As usual, stay tuned for more legal guidance, training, and education. In the interim, if there are any questions or comments, please let us know at the Contact Us page!
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