Jeff Nowak

Jeff Nowak

Franczek Radelet P.C.

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New EEOC Guidance Expands Protections and Requires Accommodations for Pregnant Employees (and Reaffirms Rights for Dads, Too!)

Earlier this week, the EEOC issued new enforcement guidance on pregnancy discrimination, warning employers of their obligation to provide pregnant employees reasonable accommodations in the workplace and giving employers...more

7/18/2014 - Corporate Counsel EEOC Employee Rights Pregnancy Pregnancy Discrimination

EEOC Updated Guidance on Pregnancy Discrimination Expands Protections and Requires Accommodations for Pregnant Employees

On July 14, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued updated enforcement guidance on pregnancy discrimination and related issues, along with a question and answer document about the updated guidance and an...more

7/16/2014 - Discrimination EEOC Employer Liability Issues Enforcement Guidance Pregnancy Discrimination

Did a Court Just Allow an Employee FMLA Leave to Care for Her Grandchild?

Grandparents across America are celebrating this week. And they have Suzan Gienapp to thank. Here’s why: Suzan, who worked for Harbor Crest (a nursing home), informed her manager in January 2011 that she needed time off...more

7/14/2014 - Corporate Counsel Employer Liability Issues FMLA Grandparents Rights

Think Like a World Cup Goalie to Avoid the Paralysis of FMLA Abuse

If you’re anything like me, you’ve been swept up in the excitement of the World Cup over the past couple of weeks. However, now that we have entered the Round of 16, one thing leaves me both fascinated and unsettled about the...more

7/2/2014 - Audits Best Management Practices FMLA FMLA Abuse

Does an Employer Have an Obligation to Provide Accommodations to Pregnant Employees? Don't Follow This Employer's Lead

Ena Wages served as a property manager for one of several apartment complexes owned by Stuart Management Corp. She began her employment on November 17, 2008, and this is significant under the FMLA because nearly one year...more

6/20/2014 - Employer Liability Issues FMLA Hiring & Firing Pregnancy Pregnancy Discrimination Reasonable Accommodation Retaliation Termination

Obama Administration Announces Proposed Rule Extending FMLA Leave Rights for Same-Sex Couples

President Obama plans to announce today a proposed rule that would allow an employee to take FMLA leave to care for a same-sex spouse, regardless of whether the employee lives in a state that recognizes their marital status. ...more

6/20/2014 - DOMA Employee Rights ERISA FMLA Marriage Paid Leave Same-Sex Marriage SCOTUS US v Windsor

Are Inflexible Leave Policies Lawful After All? One Court Leaves Employers Salivating

When it comes to leave as a reasonable accommodation after FMLA leave is exhausted, employers have been conditioned to simply believe: inflexible leave policies bad, flexible leave policies good. ...more

6/3/2014 - ADA EEOC Employee Rights FMLA Paid Leave Unpaid Leave

FMLA FAQ: Am I Required to Pay My Employee for Holidays Occurring During FMLA Leave?

There must be something in the water, but several clients have asked me this week whether they are required to pay an employee for the Memorial Day holiday even though the employee was out on FMLA leave. ...more

5/29/2014 - Corporate Counsel Employer Liability Issues FMLA Holidays Sick Leave Wages

FMLA FAQ: Can An Employer Require A Doctor's Note For Each Intermittent FMLA Absence?

Over the past few weeks, I have had the pleasure of presenting on complex FMLA issues for attorneys and HR professionals attending several seminars sponsored by the National Employment Law Institute (NELI), which puts on some...more

5/21/2014 - FMLA Medical Leave Physicians

Employer's Improper And Untimely FMLA Notices Didn't Harm Employee, So No FMLA Violation

Here’s a shout out to all you employers out there who forget to send your employees the proper FMLA notices when they seek leave for a reason covered by the FMLA. Occasionally, the courts have your back, despite your lack of...more

5/9/2014 - Employer Mandates FMLA Hiring & Firing Leave of Absence Notice Requirements

Employer Can Seek Second Opinion After Doctor Finds Employee Fit To Return From FMLA Leave

On a number of occasions, we have discussed whether an employer can keep an employee out on FMLA leave even though they want to return, or whether an employer can require an employee to undergo a full medical examination...more

4/30/2014 - FMLA Healthcare Medical Examinations

New DOL FMLA Branch Chief: Expect Even More On-Site FMLA Investigations And Focus On Systemic FMLA Compliance Issues

This past December, the Department of Labor quietly turned its FMLA enforcement over to a new leader. After the retirement of FMLA Branch Chief Diane Dawson, who led the DOL’s FMLA enforcement for several years, the DOL...more

4/24/2014 - Compliance DOL Enforcement Actions FMLA Investigations

FMLA FAQ: Can An Employer Force An Employee On FMLA Leave When The Employee Wants To Continue To Work?

Q: This week, one of our employees professed her love to one of her co-workers (who is married) and announced to everyone that they had been dating. The problem is — it’s not true. ...more

4/17/2014 - FMLA Mental Health Sick Leave

EEOC Commissioner Gives Insight Into Handling Employee Leaves Of Absence After FMLA Is Exhausted

Last week, I had the pleasure of co-presenting with EEOC Commissioner Chai Feldblum on the topic of “leave” as a reasonable accommodation under the ADA. Our presentation was part of an FMLA/ADA compliance conference hosted...more

4/8/2014 - ADA Compliance EEOC FMLA Leave of Absence

Employees Can't Take FMLA Leave For "Potential" Absences In The Future

Did you ever have an employee tell you that he has medical condition "x," which will require time off at some point in the future? Normally, you tactfully tell him to come back when he actually needs time off, correct?...more

3/26/2014 - FMLA

FMLA FAQ: Can An Employer Designate FMLA Leave When An Employee Refuses To Provide Medical Certification?

I received a ton of feedback last week in response to my post about whether an employee can decline FMLA leave even though the absence qualifies under the Act. One question, in particular, was thrown at me repeatedly, and it...more

3/14/2014 - Compliance FMLA Medical Certification Requests Medical Leave Sick Leave

Can An Employee Decline FMLA Leave Even Though The Absence Is Covered By The Act?

What do you do when one of your employees has informed you of what clearly is an FMLA-triggering event (she needs to care for her dad who is seriously ill in the hospital), but then tells you she doesn't want the absence...more

3/6/2014 - Employee Benefits Employee Rights FMLA Paid Leave Sick Leave

Yes! Regular, Reliable Attendance At Work IS Important Under The ADA After All!

No matter what position the EEOC might take, I'll always take the position that an employee's regular, reliable attendance is an essential function of the job. So, when an employee wants to arrive at work at any time,...more

2/25/2014 - ADA Disability EEOC Employer Liability Issues

The Lesson Of EEOC v. UPS And Automatic Termination Provisions: Engage In The ADA Interactive Process

Let me share a story about UPS, although in the end, this story has nothing to do with UPS. For about the past 10 years, UPS has maintained a policy of terminating any employees who are unable to return to work after...more

2/19/2014 - ADA Disability EEOC Termination UPS

ABA's Summary Of 2013 FMLA Cases A Critical Resource For Employers, Attorneys

Every February, the American Bar Association's Federal Labor Standards Legislation Committee publishes a comprehensive report of significant FMLA decisions handed down by the federal courts in the previous year. This report...more

2/13/2014 - Corporate Counsel FMLA

Can An Employee Insist That The Employer Pay For FMLA Medical Certification?

Let's put our heads together on this one. You see, it appears as though far too many employees have bought into the notion that their employer is always responsible for the cost of obtaining medical certification to support...more

2/12/2014 - DOL Employee Rights Employer Liability Issues FMLA Medical Certification Requests

FMLA FAQ: Can General Aches And Pains Support The Need For FMLA Leave?

I just returned from Disney World, a trip that had me chasing my kids (ages 8, 6 and 4) for days on end. So, I'm tired. And I ache. My feet ache. My back aches from my four year old riding on my shoulders. My head aches...more

1/30/2014 - DOL FMLA Sick Leave

FMLA FAQ: Can Excess Trips To The Potty Be Counted As FMLA Leave?

Q: One of our employees drinks a lot of water at work and goes to the bathroom continuously throughout the day. As a result, she uses far more than her normal breaks allow. ...more

1/13/2014 - ADA Adverse Employment Action FMLA Human Resources Professionals Paid Leave Pregnancy Discrimination Reasonable Accommodation Retaliation Unpaid Leave

A Triple Dog Dare: Take These Five Steps In 2014 To Drastically Improve Your FMLA Compliance

So here's my Top Five "Fix it or Else" List when it comes to leave management in 2014. How many can you cross off your list by March? Come on, I triple dog dare you...more

1/7/2014 - Compliance FMLA FMLA Abuse Unpaid Leave

Happy Festivus...Uh, I Mean, Happy Holidays...And A Happy New Leave Year!

Many years ago, on December 23, Frank Costanza introduced Festivus to us. Whether it was the Airing of Grievances, Feats of Strength, or the aluminum pole, yet another Seinfeld episode had us in stitches. ...more

12/23/2013 - FMLA Holidays Human Resources Professionals

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