It is my extreme honor and privilege to host this special Halloween edition of the Employment Law Blog Carnival.

It’s truly terrifying out there from an employment law perspective. Everybody’s suing everyone for everything. Class actions are exploding. The EEOC, NLRB, OFCCP, OSHA and a host of other acronym-ious agencies are coming after more and more (and more) employers. And new laws are popping up everywhere — California alone just passed twenty-one new statutes that are giving employers heart palpitations.

But never fear, the ELBC is here. This month’s edition is specifically designed to reduce your terror level by offering helpful hints from some of the brightest stars in the employment law universe.

California Screaming

Mary Wright offers up not one — but two — antidotes to all the concoctions cooked up in the California cauldron. First, she analyzes a new labor contractor law that could make employers liable for their contractors’ employment violations. Then she examines the new laws from a healthcare perspective.

This could only be relevant in California: Could Larry and Curly sue Moe under the state’s new anti-bullying statute? Elisa Clowes gives the answer here.

Football Freakorama

Football has been in the news lately for all the wrong reasons. Employment lessons abound …

Lorene Schaefer shows how to avoid investigation insomnia by critiquing Florida State’s seemingly questionable handling of sexual assault allegations against its Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback. Short version: Don’t wait 11+ months to investigate — even if the accused is a star.

Were the Minnesota Vikings guilty of arrest record discrimination when they suspended star running back Adrian Peterson based on allegations of child abuse? That’s the rather provocative question posed by Jesse Dill.

A player scores a touchdown on Monday Night Football. Like lots of other players, he bends a knee to pray. But unlike lots of other players, this player is Muslim and gets penalized 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct. Eric Meyer argues that the ref dropped the ball and offers tips on how to avoid the tangled web of unnecessary religious discrimination claims.

And this scholarly post from Robert Fitzpatrick should help calm some employers by showing that courts might be willing to find some whistle-blower complaints to be out-of-bounds. (OK, I know this has absolutely nothing to do with football but it did have the words “whistle” and “out-of-bounds” in its title, which is close enough in my book.)

HR Horrors

Michael Haberman warns of the dangers of “stupid HR” when it comes to wage and hour laws. In short, don’t refuse to pay overtime to employees who work 60+ hours, tell them to lie to authorities and then threaten to deport them if they don’t.

Trouble keeping top talent? Jon Hyman offers some rather creative lessons inspired by the School of Rock.

Rattled by religious accommodations? The Supreme Court might clear some things up (or not), according to Philip Miles.

Contract Catastrophes

Want your employment contracts to stand up in court? Have ’em reviewed by a lawyer. Now. Please. Stuart Rudner says.

Ban the Box or Boo to You?

Donna Ballman identifies thirteen “states that don’t suck for employees,” advocating that more should follow their lead and adopt “ban the box” laws forbidding employers from asking about arrest and conviction records early in the application process.

Still Spooked?

If so, don’t despair. As a service to the HR community and humanity in general we’re offering a FREE Halloween-themed webinar on October 30 entitled Answers to the World’s Scariest Employment Law Questions. It just might change your life.

Once again, a big THANKS to all my fellow employment law bloggers for this month’s submissions!