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Is Summary Judgment Unavailable for Sexual Harassment Claims? The Impact of the Walker v. Mod-U-Kraf Ruling on Sexual Harassment...

In modern employment litigation, the employer’s ultimate goal is to prevail at summary judgment, thereby avoiding the expense of trial and the unpredictability of a jury. A recent decision from the Fourth Circuit Court of...more

Third Circuit Nixes EEOC Retaliation Suit

Last week, in Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) v. Allstate Insurance Co., No. 2-01-cv-07402 (3d Cir. Feb. 13, 2015), the Third Circuit affirmed that the defendant did not violate federal anti-retaliation laws...more

New York Appellate Division Permits Worker to Establish Membership in Protected Class Based on Association with Another

Chiara v. Town of New Castle, (N.Y. App. Div., 2d Dep’t Jan. 14, 2015): A recent decision by the New York Appellate Division, Second Department, held that a plaintiff claiming religious discrimination under the New York State...more

Another SEC Whistleblower Amicus Brief On Whether Dodd-Frank Covers Internal Complaints

On February 6, the SEC filed its third amicus brief defending its interpretive rule on Dodd-Frank’s anti-retaliation provision, 15 U.S.C. §78u-6(h)(1). The impetus is a ruling out of the Southern District of New York in...more

“Lies, D*mned Lies, and Statistics”: Fourth Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment Against EEOC on Background Check Lawsuit Based Upon...

On February 20, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit affirmed a Maryland federal district court’s entry of summary judgment against the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) with respect to...more

You Again?: Application of the First-to-File Bar Where Subsequent Actions Are Brought By the Same Relator

The Federal False Claims Act (“FCA”), 31 U.S.C. § 3729, et seq., has unique procedural aspects that come into play when a private whistleblower (the “relator”) seeks to sue on behalf of the Government. One of these, the...more

To Whom Must The Whistle Blow? SEC Asks Second Circuit for Deference on Scope of Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Protection

In an amicus brief filed earlier this month in Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy LCC, the SEC asked the Second Circuit to defer to the Commission and hold that individuals who report misconduct internally are covered by the...more

Court Finds Naming Names in Public Filings and Imprudent Emails Support Action For Retaliation

In Celia Greengrass v. International Monetary Systems, Ltd., 2015 WL 137891, (7th Cir. Jan. 12, 2015), the Seventh Circuit relied in part on the fact that an employer identified a former employee by name in its discussion of...more

2014's Hottest Employment Rulings Affecting Southeastern Employers

2014 saw a wide range of employment issues presented before the 11th Circuit. This article seeks to highlight some of the more frequently cited 11th Circuit opinions from last year. The updates below, although not earth...more

Update on Criminal Background Checks: Impact of EEOC v. Freeman and Ongoing Challenges in a Continuously Changing Legal...

The latest chapter in the ongoing saga of employment-related criminal background checks in the United States has been written, and one of the authors had some particularly strong words for the Equal Employment Opportunity...more

Fourth Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment against EEOC in Background Check Suit

Last week, in Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) v. Freeman, No. 13-2365 (4th Cir. Feb. 20, 2105), the Fourth Circuit affirmed the award of summary judgment against the EEOC in its suit alleging that the...more

Several Ounces of Prevention: The New Jersey Supreme Court Reminds Employers of the Importance of Anti-Harassment Policies,...

On February 11, 2015, the New Jersey Supreme Court, in Aguas v. New Jersey, decided three important legal issues regarding employment discrimination claims under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (“LAD”). First,...more

California Court Of Appeal Finds The City Of Santa Monica Was Not Required To Eliminate Essential Job Functions To Accommodate...

The California Court of Appeal for the State of California, Second Appellate District upheld the City of Santa Monica's ("City") award of summary judgment in Nealy v. City of Santa Monica (Cal. Ct. App., Jan. 21, 2015,...more

South Carolina Legislative Update

The South Carolina House of Representatives last week adopted the South Carolina Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, several ethics reform measures, and revisions to the South Carolina Whistleblower and Public Employee...more

N.J. High Court Adopts Faragher-Ellerth Defense for LAD Sexual Harassment Claims

Last week, in Aguas v. New Jersey, No. A-35-13 (Feb. 11, 2015), New Jersey’s high court embraced the federal Faragher-Ellerth defense for claims alleging vicarious liability for supervisory sexual harassment under New...more

Reasonable Accommodation of a Disability Does Not Require Elimination of an Essential Job Function

The federal Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination in employment against a qualified individual on the basis of disability, and discrimination includes failing to make a reasonable accommodation. The...more

Whistleblower Protection Around the World

Welcome to Reed Smith’s monthly global employment law blog post. This month’s post covers the protection afforded to whistleblowers around the world. France - Under French law, employees cannot be sanctioned,...more

Taking Control of Class Actions From the Beginning

Growing up a Yankee fan, I hated Wade Boggs, the third baseman for the Boston Red Sox. (Never mind for the moment that Boggs later played for the Yankees.) Boggs controlled the tone of the game because he controlled the...more

Texas court rules disabled employees must ask for accommodations

What’s an employer to do when a disabled employee has repeated opportunities to ask for an accommodation but doesn’t act on them? In a recent case, a federal court in Texas ruled that the employer was justifiable in...more

Claim Which Was Time-Barred From Continuing In The Employment Tribunal May Still Be Pursued In The High Court

In Nayif v The High Commission of Brunei Darussalam [2014] EWCA Civ 1521 the Court of Appeal allowed a personal injury claim to be pursued in the High Court, even though a discrimination claim based on the same facts was...more

Virgin Islands Supreme Court Addresses Wrongful Discharge Act and Other Statutory Causes of Action

In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court of the Virgin Islands held that the Wrongful Discharge Act (WDA) provides a remedy not only when an individual is discharged or resigns under circumstances that are alleged to...more

New Jersey high court decision will reshape employer liability in sexual harassment cases

On February 11, 2015, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued a significant sexual harassment decision that offers something positive for both employers and employees. Employers will be happy that the Court has, after...more

Virgin Islands Supreme Court Issues Important Decision for Employers

On February 6, 2015, the Supreme Court of the Virgin Islands issued a decision that addresses several aspects of territorial laws prohibiting discrimination and limiting the permissible reasons for discharging employees....more

A Risk Manager with a Law Degree Is Still a Risk Manager

In the health care industry the line between attorneys and risk managers is often blurred. That’s only natural because a key duty of risk management is to avoid and mitigate legal liability. And it’s increasingly common for...more

NJ Supreme Court Backs Employer Defense in Supervisor Harassment Suits

The New Jersey Supreme Court recently ruled that an employer may assert an effective and enforced anti-harassment policy as an affirmative defense in cases brought against the employer alleging that a supervisor engaged in...more

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