News & Analysis as of

Employment Law - January 2015

U.S. Supreme Court: Security Screenings Not Compensable - Why it matters: In a closely watched case, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously reversed the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to rule that the time spent by...more

School Teacher With Breast Cancer Could Proceed With Disability Discrimination Lawsuit

Lauralyn Swanson was a teacher for the Yucca Valley Elementary School who was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a mastectomy. After the district’s board of education voted not to renew Swanson’s contract, Swanson...more

Employee's Resignation in Midst of Interactive Accommodation Process Dooms ADA Claim

Employers understand that in the event that an employee requests a workplace accommodation due to a disability, they are legally required to explore the accommodation with the employee through the “interactive process.”...more

Accommodations for Pregnant Employees Reaches Supreme Court

What accommodations must employers provide to pregnant employees? On December 3, 2014, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in a case, Young v. United Parcel Service, that may help clarify the answer to this question. The...more

Employee’s Failure to Participate in Interactive Process Dooms ADA Claim

A diabetic employee who quit her job in response to her employer’s rejection of her suggested “reasonable accommodation” cannot support claims under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), according to the First Circuit...more

Justice Department Settlement Casts Doubt on Mandatory Medical Leave - Universities Should Be Well Trained in ADA Compliance and...

On Jan. 12, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice announced a settlement with Quinnipiac University, a private institution located in Connecticut, to resolve allegations that the university violated the Americans with...more

Does the Pregnancy Discrimination Act Require Employers to Provide Light Duty Accommodations to Pregnant Employees?

Thirty-five years ago, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (“PDA”) established that it is unlawful for employers with fifteen or more employees to discriminate against pregnant workers “because of or on the basis of pregnancy,...more

EZEFLOW USA, Inc. Will Pay $65,000 to Settle EEOC Disability Discrimination Lawsuit

Pipe Fittings Manufacturer Fired Disabled Veteran Instead of Providing a Reasonable Accommodation, Federal Agency Said - PITTSBURGH - EZEFLOW USA, a pipe fitting manufacturer located in New Castle, Pa., will pay...more

Quirky Question #249, Rebirth of Pregnancy Discrimination?

Question: I work in Human Resources at a mid-size Minnesota company and am working on an HR resource related to workplace accommodations. I am relatively familiar with the Americans with Disabilities Act, but am...more

First Circuit Confirms Importance of Good Faith Interactive Process

The First Circuit Court of Appeals has given us yet another case demonstrating the importance of not only engaging in the interactive process, but doing so in good faith....more

The need for actual medical evidence in disability cases

Employers frequently call with concerns about employees who self disclose an alleged disabling condition that is not readily apparent, and who claim substantial limitations as a result. The employer’s concerns center on when...more

A Holiday Gift from the First Circuit to Employers: Judgment Affirmed for Kohl’s Department Stores in Failure to Accommodate Case

On December 19, the First Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in favor of Kohl’s Department Stores in a failure to accommodate case pursued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on behalf of a former employee....more

Tolerance for Prior Misconduct Does Not Prevent Termination Based on Latest Behavior

Some employers have a high threshold for tolerating abusive employees. Outbursts or confrontations that are grounds for automatic termination by one company may only prompt corrective action from another. A recent decision...more

FMLA Leave for Headache Effectively Converts Full-Time Position into Part-Time Position; Employers' Shrieks Heard Across the...

This one is a real headache. Sam oversees a storage area for the Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) and during certain times of the year, his position requires a fairly extensive amount of overtime. For...more

Seventh Circuit Finds No ADA Liability for Employer Not Involved in Decisionmaking

Joyce Whitaker began working for Milwaukee County as a corrections officer in 2001. In 2005, she sustained a work-related back injury and subsequently was diagnosed with several related medical conditions. As a result, her...more

Employment Law Advice You Should Never Follow

This is terrible advice on so many levels. First, an employee who doesn’t have even the relatively minimal income provided by unemployment is going to be that much more likely to sue you — as a matter of financial survival,...more

Reasonable Accommodations Under the ADA Do Not Require Changing a Job's Essential Functions

Weldon Williams, a pharmacist, suffered from diabetes which limited his ability to stand for extended periods of time. Williams sued his former employer Revco Discount Drug Centers, Inc., d/b/a CVS Pharmacy, Inc. ("CVS")...more

Legitimate Business Reasons Support Termination, Despite Employee's Recent Complaints of Discrimination

Employers often feel forced to walk on eggshells around employees who have made informal or formal complaints of discrimination, and often go so far as excusing otherwise inappropriate conduct for fear of a retaliation claim...more

Court Holds Supervalu/Jewel-Osco in Contempt for Violations of EEOC Consent Decree in Disability Case

Federal Agency Obtains Relief for Three Jewel Employees Denied Accommodation; Extension of Consent Decree by One Year; Jewel to Pay EEOC Attorneys' Fees - CHICAGO - Federal District Judge Ronald A. Guzman has entered a...more

Employment Law 101: Americans with Disabilities Act

Who does it apply to: The law applies to all employers with 15 or more employees. What is the issue: It is against the law to discriminate against an employee or a prospective employee based on a disability the person...more

Tardy-From-Home

From the beginning, the employee had attendance and punctuality problems, and the problems didn’t improve even when the employer adjusted her schedule. After she was diagnosed with MS, the company approved intermittent FMLA...more

Does a Request for Disability Benefits Qualify as a Request for an Accommodation of Leave Under the ADA?

Last month, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals answered this question in the negative and found that an employee’s request for long-term disability benefits did not amount to a request for a reasonable accommodation in the...more

Pregnancy Accommodation

A significant Pregnancy Discrimination Act case is before the U.S. Supreme Court. In Peggy Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc., (No.12-1226, cert. granted July 1, 2014, 4th Cir., 707 F.3d 437 (2013)) (referred to in this...more

It’s That Time of Year Again!

It’s that time of year again! Yes, it’s the season to be thankful and there are many holidays on the horizon. And it is also the time where we are overflowing with gatherings and activities for all our organizations and...more

Disability Network Will Pay $38,500 to Settle EEOC Disability Discrimination Lawsuit

Non-Profit Whose Mission Is to Help Disabled Individuals Failed to Accommodate and Then Fired Deaf Employee, Federal Agency Charged - DETROIT - Metropolitan Detroit Center for Independent Living, d/b/a Disability...more

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