News & Analysis as of

Business Litigation Alert: U.S. Supreme Court Set to Decide High Profile Whistleblower Case

On November 4, the U.S. Supreme Court heard the case Department of Homeland Security v. MacLean - a whistleblower protection case that is being closely watched. At issue is whether an employee can be terminated for...more

The Importance of Timing in Employment Terminations

There is a saying that “timing is everything,” and in some instances of employment termination, the timing, if not everything, may still be an important consideration....more

Eighth Circuit: Doctor Is Unable to Maintain Employment Claims Due to Determination of Independent Contractor Status

From 1991 until 2011, Larry Alexander worked as a pathologist for Avera St. Luke's Hospital in South Dakota. Under the terms of his contract, Alexander was an independent contractor free from control of Avera. Alexander paid...more

Marijuana Users in Michigan Eligible for Unemployment

Medicinal marijuana users in Michigan who are lawfully terminated by their employer for failing a drug test are, according to the Michigan Court of Appeals, entitled to receive unemployment benefits....more

Payment of Final Wages - A Costly Rule if Overlooked by Payroll

We recently had the privilege of presenting to the West Virginia Association of School Human Resource Officials (WVASHRO) on the topic of “Employee Discipline: Step-by-Step for the Personnel Office.” One of the topics of...more

Employer Permitted to Use “After-Acquired” Evidence at Discrimination Trial

In Weber v. Fujifilm Medical Systems USA Inc., et al., case numbers 13-4891 and 14-0206, decided on October 9, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that a former executive’s employer could use...more

EEOC Sues Two Employers for Terminating Transgendered Employees

Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed two potentially landmark lawsuits against employers accused of terminating employees undergoing gender reassignment procedures. The EEOC alleges that the...more

Federal Court Dismisses EEOC Lawsuit Challenging CVS Severance Agreement and Release

Employers can begin to breathe a sigh of relief after a federal judge last week dismissed a lawsuit brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against the CVS drug store chain. In the lawsuit, the EEOC took an...more

Major changes in store for Tennessee wrongful discharge law

Last month, Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam signed into law legislation (Public Chapter 995) that will significantly amend the Tennessee Human Rights Act (“THRA”), the Tennessee Public Protection Act (“TPPA”), and the...more

FMLA FAQ: Can We Terminate an Employee for Working a Second Job While on FMLA Leave?

If the employer has a uniformly-applied policy governing outside or supplemental employment, such a policy may continue to apply to an employee while on FMLA leave. An employer which does not have such a policy may not deny...more

“Discipline” included “dismissal”: employer did not breach safety-reprisal settlement when it dismissed employee after harassment...

An employer that dismissed an employee after a harassment investigation did not breach a previous safety-reprisal settlement with the employee, the Ontario Labour Relations Board has held. In effect, the employer never...more

Social Media Defies Traditional Evidence Collection and Review Techniques

Traditional e-discovery collection tools are not designed to work with social media, and manual techniques are too time consuming to be workable, as a plaintiff learned in a recent wrongful termination case, Stallings v. City...more

How Should an Employer Respond to an Employee’s False EEOC Charge?

Some employers have the urge to immediately terminate an employee who has made an unfounded discrimination complaint. In other situations, an employer may gather more information but decide not to discipline. ...more

Lies and Unemployment Compensation Proceedings – You Cannot Get Sued Again

A typical part of a contentious employment termination matter is the inevitable unemployment compensation claim. While a multiplicity of claims may emanate from the ugliness of job separation, the Connecticut courts...more

Employers, Don’t Commit These 5 Firing Faux Pas!

Do you think you have that employee termination all buttoned up, and no one will be able to challenge you? Defending that EEOC charge will be a slam dunk? No plaintiff’s lawyer in his right mind would represent your...more

NLRB “Unfriends” Employer Over Facebook “Like”

On August 25, the National Labor Relations Board found in Three D, LLC, d/b/a Triple Play Sports Bar and Grille v. Sanzone, Case No. 34-CA-012915, and Three D, LLC, d/b/a Triple Play Sports Bar and Grille v. Spinella, Case...more

Fires, Rehires and Non-Competition Agreements: Termination of Employment, No Matter How Brief, May Start the Clock to Run

An Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled that an employer cannot enforce a two year non-compete agreement against an employee who was fired for just 10 days and then rehired because the termination was treated as permanent and...more

Federal Court in District of Columbia Dismisses Whistleblower Claims of Former Fannie Mae Employee

On August 25, 2014, the District Court for the District of Columbia dismissed a claim brought by a former employee of Fannie Mae alleging violations of the anti-retaliation provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the...more

Washington Court of Appeals Expands "Jeopardy" Element of Claim for Wrongful Discharge in Violation of Public Policy

This month the Washington State Court of Appeals, Division III issued a ruling in Becker v. Community Health Systems, Inc. that expands protections in a wrongful termination action based on violation of a public policy....more

Think Before You “Snail Mail” Those FMLA Notices

When I conduct employment trainings, I often caution executives and managers to think before they email. In my experience, people tend to be more casual and to use poorer judgment when they email than when they write a memo...more

Food Lion Sued by EEOC for Religious Discrimination

Grocer Refused Accommodation for Jehovah's Witness's Worship Services, Federal Agency Charged - WINSTON SALEM, N.C. - Supermarket chain Food Lion, LLC violated federal law when it refused to provide a religious...more

EEOC Lawsuit Challenges Orion Energy Wellness Program and Related Firing of Employee

Steep Penalties for Not Participating Said to Make Program Involuntary and Violate Disabilities Act - MILWAUKEE -- Manitowoc, Wis.-based Orion Energy Systems violated federal law by requiring an employee to submit to...more

Termination of Police Officer Whose ADHD Limits Ability to Get Along With Others Does Not Violate ADA, Ninth Circuit Says

In Weaving v. City of Hillsboro (--- F.3d ----, C.A.9 (Or.), August 15, 2014), the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals was asked to decide whether, consistent with the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), the city...more

Lesser Known DOL Regulations: "Bona Fide" Terminations for H-1B Workers

Last week, we discussed whether you might be running a construction business. As I explained then, you have to look beyond the FLSA to comply with your wage and hour obligations, and that’s doubly true for employers who rely...more

West Virginia Supreme Court Upholds the Enforceability of Employer's Alternative Dispute Resolution Program

Employers in West Virginia who want to avoid litigating employment disputes in the courts received a significant victory. The West Virginia Supreme Court recently upheld a company's alternative dispute resolution (ADR)...more

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