Civil Rights Civil Procedure

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Joint Employment Challenges Continue in 2016

The legal concept of “joint employment” exists when a person is employed by two or more entities, such that the employers are responsible, individually and jointly, to the employee for compliance with a particular statute or...more

HUD Announces $1.9 Million Settlement with Memphis-Based Bank over Alleged FHA Discrimination

On February 1, HUD announced a $1.9 million settlement with a Memphis-based bank to resolve alleged violations of the Fair Housing Act. Specifically, the complainant alleged that the bank “was responsible for discriminatory...more

Employment Law - February 2016

In Equal Pay Push, EEOC to Collect Pay Data From Employers - Why it matters - On the anniversary of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, President Barack Obama announced that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission...more

Fifth Circuit Weighs In On Breadth Of The Rehabilitation Act

Recently, a split has continued among the Circuit Courts as to whether Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act permits employment discrimination suits by independent contractors. On February 1, 2016, the Fifth Circuit joined...more

NJ High Court Declines to Review “Borgata Babes” Case, Effectively Doubling Down on Appellate Court’s Acceptance of Atlantic City...

The BorgataBabes Are Subject to Specific Personal Appearance Standards - The Borgata, which when it opened in 2003, marketed itself as Atlantic City’s first Las Vegas-style resort and distinguished itself in the...more

EEOC’s Proposed Retaliation “Guidance” Muddies the Waters for Employers

For the first time in 18 years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has offered proposed revisions to its official guidelines on workplace retaliation. In its proposed revisions, the agency expresses a very...more

European Court of Human Rights Rules Employers Can Read Employees’ Emails

Last month, the European Court of Human Rights (“ECHR”), in the case of Barbulescu v. Romania, issued a ruling about the rights of employers to monitor their employees’ online communications, including those via personal...more

Are You Training Your Teachers on Trauma-Informed Practices?

The Compton Unified School District in California is currently defending itself in a unique federal court lawsuit brought by students who allege that by failing to properly address the symptoms of complex, personal trauma...more

Risks In Being A Joint Employer

Joint employment of one worker by two businesses can create risks of liability for both employers in a variety of ways. Both businesses may be liable, for example, on claims for employment discrimination and/or violations of...more

National Federation for the Blind Will Pay $25,000 to Settle EEOC Religious Accommodation Lawsuit

Advocacy Group Fired Employee Who Requested Off on His Sabbath, Federal Agency Charged - BALTIMORE - The National Federation of the Blind (NFB), the largest organization of blind and low-vision people in the United...more

Randstad Will Pay $50,000 to Settle EEOC Disability Discrimination Lawsuit

Temporary Agency Refused Job to Laborer Because She Was in a Medically Supervised Drug Rehabilitation Program, Federal Agency Charged - BALTIMORE - Baltimore-based temporary labor agency Randstad, US, LP, will pay...more

Eye-Popping Verdict For “The Little Guy” Against Wal-Mart

Last week, a federal jury (after only 3 hours of deliberation) awarded a Walmart female pharmacist... wait for it... $31 MILLION! Maureen McPadden, a 13-year Wal-Mart pharmacist, brought an action alleging retaliatory...more

Where Have You Gone Dennis Kozlowski? Third Circuit Dismisses Tyco Employee’s Whistleblower Claim Over Excessive Corporate...

On February 2, 2016, the Third Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a long-running SOX whistleblower suit filed by Jeffrey Wiest, a former accounts payable manager for Tyco Electronics. The decision is the first in which the...more

Is a Threatened Pay Cut an Adverse Action? Fifth Circuit Issues Pro-Employer Ruling in Retaliation Case

In Brandon v. Sage Corp., the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a decision from the Western District of Texas granting summary judgment in favor of a truck driving school. The issue in the case concerned whether the...more

EEOC Argues Adverse Employment Action Irrelevant in Racial Segregation Cases

Recently, the EEOC filed an appeal in EEOC v. AutoZone, Inc. et al., arguing that the lower court erred in dismissing the case against AutoZone Inc. by improperly requiring the EEOC to show that the employee at issue suffered...more

Seventh Circuit Allows Reverse Racism Claims To Proceed Against Contractor

Earlier this week, the Seventh Circuit allowed a Caucasian construction worker to take his reverse racism claims to trial because there were factual disputes about the reason for his termination. The plaintiff, Terry...more

Five on Friday – Five Recent Developments that We’ve Been Watching Closely

It’s Friday and time for another overview of developments in the field of business and human rights that we’ve been monitoring. This week’s post includes: recent developments with regard to a major Alien Tort Statute...more

What GCs Need to Know About Settling Employment Claims

As we noted in a recent post on another topic, most of the lawyers we know who serve as general counsel are stretched pretty thin. It’s just not possible for them to become expert in all the areas of law they encounter....more

Jury Awards Over $31 Million To Former Wal-Mart Employee—But Wal-Mart Probably Won’t Have To Pay Most Of It

McPadden v. WalMart Stores East, L.P., No. 14-cv-475, awarded more than $31 million to a former Wal-Mart employee who had worked for the company as a pharmacist. The plaintiff sued for discrimination and retaliation after...more

EEOC Proposes Expansive Enforcement Guidance for Retaliation Claims

For the first time in nearly 20 years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has issued proposed enforcement guidance regarding retaliation claims. According to the EEOC, the revised guidance is necessary in light of...more

ADA Litigation Over Website Accessibility Is Exploding

Today, it is nearly unthinkable to run a successful business without a website. While companies focus on the appearance, functionality and usability of their sites, they often inadvertently overlook how well the website...more

EEOC May Obtain Private (And Arguably Unnecessary) Employee Information

Employers served with an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) subpoena requesting private employee information – regardless of its arguable relevance – may nevertheless be compelled to respond, according to a...more

Downsizing and Firing Employees in California

Most companies will eventually face the unpleasant task of terminating an employee or group of employees. When they do, it’s critical that they follow best practices and comply with applicable laws for many reasons, ranging...more

Refusing to Attend a Fitness-For-Duty Exam May Not Be Grounds For Termination under the ADA

On January 25, 2016, the New Jersey Appellate Division clarified the requirements set forth by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the related guidance issued by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission...more

Employment Practices Newsletter - February 2016

In New Guidance, DOL Gets Aggressive on “Joint Employment” - By issuing a new interpretative document in January, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division attempted to clarify the concept of “joint...more

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