Education Labor & Employment Civil Procedure

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High Court Reviews Protected Activity Under SLAPP Statute

In yet another installment of the gravamen of the complaint conundrum, the California Supreme Court is currently reviewing Park v. Board of Trustees of California State University (2015) 239 Cal.App.4th 1258. The issue is...more

Can a Massachusetts Religious School Refuse to Employ a Worker in a Same-Sex Marriage?

In Barrett v. Fontbonne Academy, the Massachusetts Superior Court curtailed various statutory and constitutional defenses available to an employer affiliated with a religious institution that faces discrimination claims under...more

A Break From The Trend? NLRB Regional Director Finds Carroll College Exempt From Board Jurisdiction Under Pacific Lutheran

Union organizing directed at religious college and university faculties has gained momentum since the National Labor Relations Board (“Board”) issued its decision in Pacific Lutheran University (“PLU”) in 2014. In PLU, the...more

The Latest "Trojan Horse" in The Judicial War on The Deliberative Process Privilege

In a decision issued December 21, 2015 (Caldecott v. Superior Court of Orange County (Newport- Mesa Unified School District)), the California Court of Appeal ruled that a former school district employee is entitled to records...more

Immigration Update: Court grants government extension request for OPT STEM rule

An update to the notice we posted last week about the ongoing STEM OPT litigation: The court, in Washington Alliance of Technology Workers v. U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security, granted the government (Department of...more

Interest Groups Support NCAA’s Anti-Felon Policy on Appeal

Recently, three interest groups filed an amicus brief to support the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s (“NCAA”) policy that bars anyone who has been convicted of a felony from coaching in NCAA-certified high school...more

NLRB to Consider Whether Grad Students at Private Universities Are “Employees” Covered by the NLRA

Whether graduate student assistants at private universities are “employees” covered by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) might soon be taken up (again) by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Since overruling...more

“Cat’s Paw” Liability in Faculty Decision-Making

Children’s fables are often an overlooked source of wisdom. Take for example Aesop’s 17th century fable “The Monkey and the Cat.” As the story goes, a cat and monkey lived in the same house as pets. The monkey, desiring...more

School Boards Beware: Appellate Court Applies High Bar for School Board Ignoring Hearing Officer’s Findings of Fact

The Illinois Appellate Court (Fifth District) recently reversed a school board’s decision to dismiss a tenured teacher for failure to comply with a notice to remedy. This case confirms that while school boards have...more

California Appellate Court: Possession of Documents Requested Under Public Records Act Does Not Render Request Moot

Decision in Case Arising from Wrongful Termination Claims Against a School District - When a party is seeking release of documents under the California Public Records Act, a public agency can’t deny the release based on...more

College Basketball Players Can Bring Sexual Orientation Claim Under Federal Law, And Why Employers Should Pay Attention

In the months since the EEOC’s landmark ruling in Baldwin v Foxx, the looming question has been: Would federal courts adopt the Commission’s position that claims of sexual orientation discrimination were cognizable under...more

A New Challenge to Anti-Nepotism Rules Based on Marital Status Discrimination

In a newly filed lawsuit that has garnered some publicity, a Shelton high school teacher is suing the Shelton Public Schools over the imposition of an anti-nepotism rule which she claims constitutes marital status...more

Group Life Insurance Claims by a Teacher’s Beneficiary Are Subject to ERISA Preemption: Woods v. American United Life Insurance...

On ERISA preemption grounds, a federal court has ruled against state law claims asserted by the beneficiary of a former school teacher who sought benefits from a group life insurance policy. Woods v. American United Life...more

More Lawsuits This Holiday Season?

Employers are acutely aware of the legal pitfalls that come with the holiday season. Office parties and alcohol are a potent recipe for bad judgment, and that bad judgment leads to harassment charges and lawsuits. Another...more

NLRB to Reconsider Whether Graduate Teaching Assistants at Private Universities Can Unionize

Last week, the National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) voted 3-1 to reconsider its decision in Brown University, 342 NLRB 483 (2004) that graduate teaching and research assistants are not employees under the National...more

Making Bad Choices: Title IX, Title VII and Ludlow V. Northwestern University

A prior post considered the case of Ha v. Northwestern University, in which the plaintiff claimed that Northwestern had violated Title IX by insufficiently disciplining one of its professors, Peter Ludlow, despite concluding...more

What Should Employers Expect During The New Supreme Court Term?

The first Monday in October is the traditional first day of a new U.S. Supreme Court term.  As always, the 2015-16 term will have several cases that are of particular interest to the nation’s employers.  Here is a review of...more

Federal Court Vacates STEM Extension Program

Current STEM OPT holders not affected until February 2016. A federal judge's ruling earlier this month invalidated the 17-month extension of optional practical training (OPT) for international students in the science,...more

What is going on with STEM OPT?

A recent federal court ruling has created uncertainty and speculation about the STEM OPT program. This summary is provided to inform employers and F-1 STEM students of the facts about the effect of this decision....more

Cozen O’Connor Lawyers Win Appeal Defeating Northwestern Football Players' Attempt to Form Union

The National Labor Relations Board announced on August 17, 2015 that it would not assert jurisdiction over Northwestern University’s scholarship football student-athletes in their bid to be recognized as “employees” and form...more

California Court of Appeal Rules in Favor of Public Entity Employer: No Forum Shopping for California Public Entity Employees

In a recent unpublished case, the California Court of Appeal ruled a public civil service commission decision on a worker’s employment claims precluded him from relitigating his claims in a civil action. According to the...more

NLRB Punts on College Athlete Unions

On August 17, 2015, the National Labor Relations Board issued the long awaited decision in the Northwestern University football union case. 362 NLRB No. 167 (8/17/2015). In a rare display of unanimity, the five members of...more

Seventh Circuit Again Limits Application Of The Wal-Mart Ruling And Certifies Chicago Teachers’ Discrimination Claims

In Chicago Teachers Union, Local No. 1, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO v. Bd. of Educ. of the City of Chicago, Case No. 14-2843 (7th Cir. Aug. 7, 2015), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit reversed a...more

Federal Court Ruling Puts STEM OPT Extension in Jeopardy

On Wednesday, August 12, 2015, the US District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the US Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) did not follow required procedures when it promulgated regulations allowing for...more

District Court Vacates F-1 STEM OPT Rule and Provides DHS With Six Months to Cure Defect

On Wednesday, August 12, 2015, U.S. District Court Judge Ellen Huvelle of the District of Columbia vacated the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) 2008 rule allowing F-1 students in the U.S. with college-level degrees in...more

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