Undue Hardship

News & Analysis as of

Shop ‘til You Drop – But Take a Day to Pray

Retail stores cannot force an employee to work seven consecutive days without giving the employee one day off to worship or rest. Like the ADA, retail stores must also accommodate the religious beliefs of employees unless it...more

Employment Law 101: Worksite Lactation Breaks

According to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, all employers with more than 50 employees nationwide are required to comply. Employers with less than 50 employees may not comply if it would be an undue hardship....more

Discharging the Brunner Test: Student Loan Debt in Bankruptcy

Twenty-seven years ago the Second Circuit was faced with a debtor who proposed to use the Bankruptcy Code to avoid her student loan debt – only five months after graduation. The Second Circuit came down harshly on Ms. Brunner...more

Public School Advocacy Groups Seek Supreme Court Review of “Stay-Put” Placements in Private Schools

One of the most important due process protections afforded to disabled students under the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is the principle of “stay-put” or “pendency” placement....more

Dischargeability of Student Loan Debt in Bankruptcy

Title 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(8) of the United States Bankruptcy Code provides that, in order to obtain a discharge of an otherwise nondischargeable student loan, an individual in bankruptcy (the “debtor”) must establish that he...more

CMS Expands Hardship Exemption for Stage 2 Meaningful Use

CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner announced on March 11, 2014, an expansion of the hardship exemption available to eligible providers who were unable to attest to being meaningful users under the Stage 2 Meaningful Use Rule...more

New York City Pregnancy Accommodation Law Now in Effect

The most recent amendment to the New York City Human Rights Law takes effect January 30, 2014. It requires employers to reasonably accommodate employees based on pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions unless...more

EEOC’s Attempt to Revisit Undue Hardship Defense Rejected

Last year, we reported on EEOC v. JBS USA, LLC No. 8:10CV318 (D. NE.). The case includes the EEOC’s pattern or practice claim that JBS failed to accommodate its Muslim employees’ religious practices at its Grand Island,...more

Recent EEOC Religious Discrimination Cases Are Reminder of Undue Hardship Standard

Over the last few months, the EEOC has settled various religious discrimination lawsuits against employers across the U.S., including California....more

Fenwick Employment Brief - January 2014

EEOC Position Statement Comes Back to Bite Employer in Civil Lawsuit - In Kwan v. Andalex Group, LLC, the Second Circuit (covering New York, Connecticut and Vermont) considered the impact of prior inconsistent...more

Standard for a BZA to Grant a Variance Little Different Than Expressed In Cochran: Martin v. City of Alexandria

When the Virginia Supreme Court issued the opinion in Martin v. City of Alexandria on June 7, 2013, it gave some guidance of the current state of the legal standard for a Board of Zoning Appeals to grant a variance. This...more

Can An Indefinite Leave Of Absence Be A Reasonable Accommodation?

One of the most difficult issues an HR professional or in-house employment counsel faces is how to deal with an employee who cannot return to work after FMLA leave expires. Is additional leave required? ...more

New York's Highest Court: Indefinite Leave Not Reasonable Under State Law, But Could Be Under NYC Law

In a decision that is both favorable to and disadvantageous for New York State employers, the New York Court of Appeals has ruled that indefinite leave is not a reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities under the...more

Undue Hardship? Part II: The Eighth Circuit’s Totality-Of-Circumstances Test

In July, this blog explored the Second and Ninth Circuit’s application of the “undue hardship” test under 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(8), which states that student loan debt is presumptively non-dischargeable. To refresh, in those...more

Employer Must Prove Indefinite Leave Is Undue Hardship Under NYCHRL, Says New York’s Highest Court

Can an employee state a claim for a disability discrimination termination when he advises his employer that his return to work date "is indeterminate at this time" and the employer, without further discussion with the...more

New York City Employers Must Prove Indefinite Leave Request is Undue Hardship

The New York Court of Appeals ruled last Thursday that a disabled employee’s request for an indefinite leave of absence is not a per se unreasonable accommodation under the New York City Human Rights Law. Rather, the state’s...more

Act Now Advisory: Guidance for D.C. Employers from the Government Audit of the D.C. Accrued Sick and Safe Leave Act of 2008

The Accrued Sick and Safe Leave Act of 2008 ("Act") requires D.C. employers to provide employees with paid sick days to care for themselves or their family members and with access to paid leave for work absences associated...more

Three Questions Employers Should Ask About Religious Accommodation Requests

A recent survey by the Pew Research Center reports that 58% of Americans say that religion is very important in their lives and 76% of Americans say that prayer is an important part of their daily lives. The survey also...more

Quirky Question #209, Obesity as a Disability under MT Law

We are in Montana and a very obese woman recently applied for a manager position. The position is more physical than most in that there is significant walking between facilities, and the candidate must climb ladders to view...more

Bankruptcy Reaffirmation Agreements

As consumer bankruptcy filings remain an all-too-common occurrence, many lenders continue to find themselves in the often murky world of bankruptcy. As a result, on top of ensuring adherence to the numerous confusing...more

Fenwick Employment Brief - September 2013: New A & F’s Appearance Policy Violates Employee’s Religious Rights

In EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc. dba Hollister Co California, LLC, a federal district court in California recently held that Abercrombie & Fitch’s “Look Policy” violated a part-time associate’s religious rights...more

Accommodating religious beliefs in the workplace: What are the limits?

Sikiru Adeyeye requested approximately four weeks of leave from work to participate in his father’s funeral ceremony in Nigeria. In his request, Adeyeye explained that he had to attend the “funeral rite” and that it was “very...more

EEOC Sues Star Transport, Inc. for Religious Discrimination

Agency Charges Trucking Company Failed to Accommodate and Wrongfully Terminated Two Muslim Employees For Refusal to Deliver Alcohol Due to Religious Beliefs - PEORIA, Ill. - Star Transport, Inc., a trucking company...more

The Duty to Accommodate Family Status (and Potentially Lifestyle Choices Too)

In an update last October (Accommodating Family Status – Needs vs. Preferences) we advised you that the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal established a new test for an employer’s duty to accommodate on the basis of family status...more

Employer Beware - Automatic termination policies are illegal. Just ask Sears.

Qualified employees with a disability are entitled to a reasonable accommodation from their employer to enable them to perform the essential functions of their job. One of the most difficult issues employers face is...more

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