News & Analysis as of

Stepping Out of the Shadows: Accommodating Mental Health Issues in the Workplace

2016 brought about a host of changes for employers, including new political leaders, ever-changing technology, and new and more open dialogue on a variety of different issues. Aside from politics, perhaps one of the biggest...more

Employer Responsibilities re Mental Health Conditions

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently issued a “User-Friendly Document” explaining the rights of job applicants and employees with mental health conditions. In doing so, the EEOC has confirmed that individuals...more

EEOC Provides Guidance Outlining Protections for Applicants and Employees with Mental Health Conditions

On December 12, 2016, the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued an informal resource document which serves to remind employers of protections afforded to applicants and employees who suffer from...more

Employment Law 2016 - Year In Review

As calendar year 2016 draws to a close, we are once again reminded that employment laws are constantly changing—except, of course, for the one change employers were expecting most, which is where our 2016 employment law...more

Employment Law Navigator – Week in Review: December 2016 #3

Last week, the EEOC issued a publication on the rights of job applicants and employees with mental health conditions, along with a companion document addressing the mental health provider’s role in reasonable accommodations...more

EEOC Releases Guidance on Mental Health Discrimination

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued guidance reminding employers that it is illegal under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other laws to discriminate against an employee simply because...more

Sign of the Times: EEOC Settles Case of Employer Failing to Provide ASL Interpreter for Job Interview

A deaf person applies for a job and the employee who takes applications asks you “how can a deaf person do this job?” What if an essential function of the job requires interaction with the public or the ability to communicate...more

Employment Law - October 2016 #2

California Employers Face New Laws - Why it matters - Employers in California will be facing some new laws in the coming months as Governor Jerry Brown signed several employment-related bills on the last day of the...more

McDonald's to Pay $56,500 to Settle EEOC Disability Discrimination Suit

Belton, Mo., Eatery Refused to Interview Deaf Applicant, Federal Agency Charged - ST. LOUIS -- McDonald's Corporation and McDonald's Restaurants of Missouri will pay $56,500 and furnish other relief to settle a...more

Going For the Gold: How To Legally Recruit The Best Candidates

This summer the world’s greatest athletes are competing for Olympic gold. In order to win, these athletes must follow a strict set of rules to prevent deductions and disqualifications. When employers compete for the best...more

Who Was Naughty, And Who Was Nice In Employment Law This Year

The National Labor Relations Board, for being naughty in too many ways to mention. Its rules on employer handbook policies, including confidentiality and social media, are unrealistic and almost impossible for employers to...more

EEOC Issues Guidance on Rights of Applicants and Employees Infected with HIV

In a recent press release announcing new guidance for applicants and employees infected with HIV, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) noted that in 2014 alone, it resolved over 200 charges of discrimination...more

Will A Court Think You Are Naughty or Nice This Holiday Season?

Religious discrimination cases have been all over the headlines in 2015. The most recognizable case involves Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk who refused to issue marriage licenses in protest of the legalization of...more

Fenwick Employment Brief

Legislative Update - Governor Brown recently signed into state law the following employment law bills (among others): SB 358—Referred to as the California Fair Pay Act, this law is directed at closing the pay...more

Supreme Court Ruling Endangers Ignorance Defense

Until now, job application and interview questions that reveal applicants’ protected characteristics have been strongly discouraged. In an economy where dozens of people apply for a vacant job posting, knowing too much about...more

Gavel to Gavel: Faith and consequences

Last week’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court on religious discrimination, EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores Inc., may have the unintended effect of an increase in religious stereotyping in the workplace. The lawsuit...more

EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Continued: Did the Supreme Court Pave the Way for ADA Claims Based on Nonobvious Disabilities?

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court decided EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch, a Title VII case involving religious discrimination. While the case did not directly involve the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the...more

Supreme Court Sides with EEOC in Abercrombie & Fitch Hijab Case

On Monday, June 1, 2015, the United States Supreme Court reversed a judgment of the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit which had granted Abercrombie & Fitch (“Abercrombie”) summary judgment in a religious...more

EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch: Do You Need to Ask Applicants Whether They Require Religious Accommodation?

On June 1, 2015, the United States Supreme Court held that a job applicant can establish religious discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 without proof that the employer had “actual knowledge” of the...more

EEOC V. Abercrombie’s Lesson For Employers – In 5 Minutes Or Your Money Back

In a nutshell, the Supreme Court decision in EEOC v. Abercrombie means this: if an employment decision is motivated by religion – even if the employer does not actually know the religious need of the individual – then the...more

Lack of Actual Knowledge of a Need for a Religious Accommodation is Not a Defense to a Religious Bias Suit

On June 1, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in a religious bias suit involving an unsuccessful Muslim job applicant who was rejected because her headscarf did...more

Supreme Court Opens The Door To More Religious Accommodation Claims

In a near-unanimous 7-page opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court held that employers need not have “actual knowledge” that an employee is requesting a modification of his position for religious purposes in order to be required to...more

Confounding the equality paradigm: accommodating religious practice after EEOC v. Abercrombie - 3 steps for employers

There is a traditional defense to claims of unequal treatment: lack of knowledge. In Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc., 575 U.S. ____ (June 1, 2015), that too was the employer’s...more

Accommodation of Sincerely Held Religious Beliefs

Several years ago a young woman wearing a black hijab applied for a retail job at a national chain in a Tulsa mall. The retailer, which caters to the young and fashionable, has a strict dress code which prohibits, among other...more

Asking about religion accommodations

An employer’s obligation to raise the issue of potential accommodations for religious discrimination under Title VII will soon receive clarification, as the U.S. Supreme Court is set to hear E.E.O.C. v. Abercrombie & Fitch...more

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