On June 22, 2020, the White House issued the “Proclamation Suspending Entry of Aliens Who Present a Risk to the U.S. Labor Market Following the Coronavirus Outbreak” which is the latest in a series of U.S. immigration restrictions purportedly tied to the COVID-19 outbreak and its impact on the American economy. READ MORE
As companies around the world expand and contract, they require expert guidance on the resulting HR and compensation issues. Laura Becking has devoted her career to facilitating this process. Her guidance empowers companies, regardless of size or stage, to align their workforce and business objectives.
Her practice is unique in the market. In addition to leading Orrick’s Global Employment & Equity Compensation practice; she is also integrated into the firm’s top-tier employment practice and compensation and benefits practice, enabling her to offer comprehensive solutions for the modern workplace.
Her strategies extend beyond regulations and compliance, into the company’s overall culture and societal nuances of their local workforce. By blending these elements, her targeted plans address a wide range of issues, including hiring, performance management, terminations, discrimination, reclassification, HR data privacy compliance, employee handbooks and policies. She also helps implement employee equity and other compensation and benefits arrangements outside the U.S., and covers all aspects of securities, foreign exchange and tax filings triggered by such rollouts. Whether working with a pre-IPO start-up or an international corporation, Laura remains focused on her client’s human capital.
Laura’s distinctive approach places her in high demand for corporate transactions, in particular IPOs and acquisitions. She advised on the employment and/or equity compensation aspects of Facebook’s and Cisco’s global acquisitions; various global transactions for GoPro, Sabre, and Snap; the pre- and post-merger integration for Digicert’s acquisition of Symantec’s Website Security Business; as well as the global acquisitions and global tender offers for a large number of pre-IPO clients. She has also advised companies such as Pinterest, Elasticsearch, GitHub, Nvidia, Optimizely, Scale, Splunk, Twist, Viasat, Vice and VMWare on global employment and equity compensation matters and transactions.
Posts by: Laura Becking
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to financially impact companies worldwide, employers have been working to implement creative compensation strategies to mitigate the financial impact on their workforce, continue to incentivize employees and reward on-site essential workers. While cash is king, equity awards have long been a key component of an overall compensation and benefits strategy for many companies, from small to large, private and public. In difficult economic times such as these, granting equity awards can help companies save cash while filling a compensation gap created by salary reductions, unpaid furloughs or decreased benefits. Equity awards could also soften the blow to employees losing their jobs due to layoffs and redundancies resulting from an employer’s Coronavirus-related financial losses and cost-cutting measures. READ MORE
Can companies reduce the working hours and/or pay of their international workforce?
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt business across the globe, many international companies are continuing to consider and implement cost-saving measures to protect their financial health. One of the major points for consideration is whether multinational companies may reduce the working hours and/or pay of their international workforce. READ MORE
Given the current pandemic, companies are tackling an array of business-critical decisions ranging from workplace safety measures to remote working parameters to pay cuts, furloughs and reductions in force. In this mass of competing priorities, employers of foreign national employees should be careful not to overlook any unique impact that their decision making can have on their nonimmigrant employee population and corresponding compliance requirements that may be triggered. The analysis and impact will be highly contingent upon what type of work authorization and nonimmigrant status the employees are working pursuant to (for example: H-1B, O-1, L-1, TN or F-1 OPT EAD holder), and what the corresponding parameters of their status are. READ MORE
As COVID-19 begins to spread in Latin America, we have seen countries begin to adopt measures to protect their citizens and residents. Some countries have been on lock down since last month, requiring all but essential workers to stay in place (e.g., Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, El Salvador, Peru and Venezuela). Last week, Mexico canceled all non-essential activities and urged its citizens “Quédate en Casa” (Stay at Home). Other countries have extensive curfews (e.g., Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Paraguay). READ MORE
While most of the world is triaging around stricter COVID-19-related restrictions and lockdowns, some countries are already starting to take steps to return to a new normal – one where business continues even as outbreaks may flare up. With plenty of lessons to learn and a cadre of non-essential personnel looking for productive activity, employers who can do so are advised to take advantage of the “pause” in regular activity to sure up for the “post” COVID-19 realities. Below are some suggested areas of focus: READ MORE
As the coronavirus, now officially named the “COVID-19 virus,” continues to spread across the world, employers are also looking to ensure a safe working environment for their employees. In addition to our previous perspectives for U.S. employers and EU employers, this updated overview provides employers in the rest of the Asia-Pacific (“APAC”) region with practical advice to develop their COVID-19 virus response strategy. Specifically, this overview covers the countries of: The People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam. READ MORE
We’ve been following COVID-19 around the globe since January when it became clear that the outbreak in Wuhan, China was having broader employment and business implications. Under the general pattern, countries with a few confirmed cases act to contain the spread of the virus through a combination of inbound travel barriers, mandatory isolation/quarantines and aggressive testing and follow up of suspected contacts of the confirmed cases. If the number of new cases become too numerous to source (i.e., people are getting infected in the community), the focus shifts from containment to damage control in a predictable way. Lockdowns are part of that equation – often beginning with school closures, the ban of large gatherings and the cancelation of events, progressing to the closure of an increasing list of “non-essential businesses” and culminating in mandatory stay at home orders. READ MORE
As bars, restaurants, theatres, sporting and entertainment events, gyms, casinos, movie theatres, and other establishments shutter globally in response to the COVID-19 pandemic many employers have been forced to consider immediate layoffs of their employees around the world in response to their businesses having been essentially shut down. Other employers, faced with the possibility of a looming global recession, are preparing for potential future international layoffs. Significant pitfalls await employers conducting layoffs (temporary or permanent) outside of the U.S., which are heavily regulated by law, including mandatory severance payments, notice periods and cumbersome processes. We discuss some of these pitfalls for selected countries outside the U.S. including Australia, China, France, Germany, Japan, Russia, Spain and the UK below and discuss some of the early responses by countries like Spain and Germany to create exceptions to the normal requirements. READ MORE
Please note: Government guidance and regulation is changing rapidly, and so it is important for employers to always check on the applicable government site and with the Orrick team on the latest information. Employers may refer to information on Orrick’s COVID-19 Resource Center that provides country-specific links. READ MORE