Labor & Employment Civil Rights

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Labor & Employment E-Note - April 17, 2014

In This Issue: - Employers Face Increasing Number of Religious Bias Suits - Small Business Owners Concerned About Overtime Pay Requirements - Rising Number of Wage Theft Lawsuits Highlight Enforcement Issues -...more

Kenan Transport to Pay $27,000 to Settle EEOC Pregnancy Discrimination and Retaliation Suit

Company Forced Pregnant Employee to Take Unpaid Leave of Absence, Then Fired Her for Complaining, Federal Agency Charged - SPARTANBURG, S.C. - Kenan Transport, LLC, a Delaware trucking company that operates a terminal...more

Making a Reasonable Accommodation: Walgreens and the $1.37 Question

A California federal court denied Walgreen Co.’s motion for summary judgment on April 11, 2014, in a disability discrimination case brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC v. Walgreen Co., 2014 U.S. Dist....more

Deadline for Philadelphia Employers to Post New Notice of Rights for Pregnant Employees is Approaching

This Sunday, April 20, marks the deadline by which Philadelphia employers must provide their employees with written notice of a recent amendment to Philadelphia’s Fair Practices Ordinance. The amendment provides additional...more

Employment Law Checkup 2014

Each year usually starts with a lot of resolutions and good intentions that fall by the wayside, mostly for lack of a plan. One resolution of all employers should be to update their policies and practices to comply with the...more

“Oh, What A Tangled Web We Weave When First We Practice To Deceive.”

Employer avoids liability for harassing texts sent by rogue employee - In an interesting decision, the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario has ruled that an employer is not liable for discriminatory and harassing texts...more

Senator Grassley Announces the Creation of a Congressional Whistleblower Caucus

Last week, we provided an update on Senator Chuck Grassley’s (R-IA) efforts to strengthen the IRS Whistleblower Program and expedite the processing of IRS Whistleblower claims. Now, Senator Grassley – a longtime advocate for...more

Sixth Circuit Upholds Dismissal of EEOC Suit Against Employer Screening Applicants Based on Credit History Information

In April 2012, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued its updated enforcement guidance concerning how, in its view, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) restricts an employer’s discretion...more

Take 5 Newsletter: Five Hot Topics in Hospitality Law

ACA Final Regulations Provide Rules for Seasonal Employees - On February 10, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") promulgated final regulations for the ACA's employer "shared responsibility provisions" in IRS...more

Benhar Office Interiors to Pay $90,000 to Settle EEOC Pregnancy Discrimination Suit

Federal Agency Charged Office Furniture Store with Refusing to Hire Applicant When It Learned She Was Pregnant - NEW YORK - Benhar Office Interiors LLC, a New York-based office furnishing and architectural store in...more

Employee Needs More Than Speculation to Support his Retaliation Claim

To prevail on a claim of retaliation under federal law, an employee must prove that he or she engaged in a “protected activity” under an antidiscrimination statute and subsequently suffered an adverse employment action. In...more

Sixth Circuit Delivers Knockout to EEOC in Another Background Check Case

The EEOC suffered a major setback on April 9th when the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in the highly watched background check case of EEOC v. Kaplan Higher Education Corporation, et al. The Sixth...more

Social Media: Friend or Foe?

Social media can be a powerful tool for employers when facing litigation, but it can also expose employers to liability when used to make employment decisions, especially when it comes to hiring new employees. For example,...more

Employment Reform Legislation Passes Tennessee Legislature

On April 16, 2014, the Tennessee General Assembly, at the urging of Baker Donelson, passed significant employment litigation reform that will benefit employers throughout Tennessee. The bill places caps on compensatory...more

Employment Law

Second Circuit: Inability to Sit for Long Periods Can Trigger ADA Coverage - Why it matters: Can an employee’s inability to sit for a prolonged period of time constitute a disability under the Americans with...more

U.S. Supreme Court Rules That Employees Of Private Contractors Of Public Companies Are Covered By SOX Whistleblower Protections

In Lawson v. FMR, LLC, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the whistleblower protections established in the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX) cover employees of a public company's private contractors and subcontractors, reversing...more

Employment Litigation Up 400%! Are You Sure Your Code of Ethics Training is Effective?

According to the US Department of Labor employment litigation has increased by over 400% in the last two decades. Federal and state discrimination laws have expanded, giving employees more opportunities to challenge...more

New York Votes to Protect Unpaid Interns from Discrimination

On March 26, 2014, the New York City Counsel voted unanimously to amend the New York City Human Rights Law (the “NYCHRL”) to allow unpaid interns to sue for harassment and discrimination. The bill was likely drafted in...more

EU-Parlament stärkt Rechte entsendeter Arbeitnehmer

Die rund 1 Million innerhalb der EU entsendeten Arbeitnehmer – etwa 180.000 davon in Deutschland – können auf besseren Schutz ihrer Rechte hoffen. Das EU-Parlament hat am 16. April 2014 den von der Kommission vorgelegten...more

Germany: When is a New Hire too old to join a Company Pension Scheme?

In Germany, all employees are mandatorily covered by the statutory pension insurance which provides the main source of income during retirement. In addition, many companies grant company pension benefits to their employees,...more

Illinois Senate To Consider A Bill Providing New Protections For Pregnant Employees

Last week, the Illinois House of Representatives approved a bill to strengthen protections for pregnant employees in the workplace. HB 8, introduced by Rep. Mary Flowers (D-Chicago) and supported by Governor Pat Quinn, would...more

New Georgia Law Helps Protect Employers from Negligent Hiring and Retention Claims

On April 13, 2014, Georgia's governor signed SB 365 to, in part, protect employers that hire and retain employees with criminal convictions. Under the new law, if the Department of Corrections issues a "Program and Treatment...more

The EEOC Loses Background Check Battle In The 6th Circuit

The Sixth Circuit issued a much anticipated ruling on April 9, 2014 related to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (“EEOC’s”) systemic targeting of employer background check policies. ...more

New IRS Guidance Relating to Same-Sex Spouses and Qualified Retirement Plan Benefits

Shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled (in U.S. v. Windsor) that Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was unconstitutional, the IRS announced that same-sex marriages will be recognized for federal tax...more

IRS Issues Windsor Guidance For Qualified Retirement Plans

The IRS has issued Notice 2014-19, which provides anticipated guidance for sponsors of qualified retirement plans on complying with last year's Supreme Court ruling in United States v. Windsor. That decision deemed...more

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