Willful Misconduct

News & Analysis as of

When Reviewing a Reinstatement Decision by an Arbitrator, Consider Over a Dozen Factors

If you like getting lost on roads with your head spinning on which way to go, this is your post. (Everyone else, well, try to keep up.) I recap a case for companies with unions to pay attention to....more

Data Shows Spike In Patent Attorney Fee Motions And Awards After Octane

Prior to last year’s Supreme Court decisions in Octane Fitness LLC v. Icon Health & Fitness, Inc, 134 S. Ct. 1749 (2014) and Highmark, Inc. v. Allcare Health Mgmt. Sys., 134 S. Ct. 1744 (2014), district courts awarded...more

See You In Court - April 2015

The almost-interminable winter was finally over, and Peter Principal saw a significant uptick in the number of suspensions for offenses ranging from horseplay to assault. To make things worse, many of the students had their...more

Insubordination Can Disqualify an Employee From Unemployment Compensation Benefits

Unemployment compensation is a form of social insurance. Workers who lose their jobs receive benefits – which are less than they earned when employed – to provide a level of income while transitioning to the next job. ...more

Naming Names: Washington Supreme Court Holds That Public Employers Must Disclose the Names of Employees Being Investigated for...

On April 2, 2015, the Washington Supreme Court held that public employees under investigation for workplace misconduct cannot prevent their identities from being disclosed in response to a request for public records. The...more

International Arbitration Newsletter - Q1 2015

Use it or lose it: French courts reject procedural objections not raised at the earliest opportunity - The Paris Court of Appeal has issued a stark warning to litigants who fail to raise procedural objections at the...more

ICSID tribunals address allegations of investor misconduct

Assertions of investor misconduct, ranging from allegations of abusive restructuring to outright corruption in procuring an investment, are evolving into an important part of the catalog of state defenses in investment...more

Common Sense Prevails: Arbitration Award OK’ing On-Duty Drug Usage Overturned

In the world of labor arbitration, common sense sometimes takes a holiday. Fortunately, a Superior Court judge recently overturned an arbitrator’s attempt at second guessing an employer’s response to serious misconduct...more

Sending Pornographic Images was Gross Misconduct Even Though Not Discovered For Several Years

In Williams v Leeds United Football Club [2015] EWHC 376 (QB), the High Court considered whether sending pornographic images from a work e-mail amounted to gross misconduct which would justify termination without notice, even...more

Seventh Circuit Says Finding of Intent Must Be Explicit for Preclusive Effect in Non-Dischargeability Action

The Bankruptcy Code exempts from discharge those debts arising from willful and malicious injuries caused by the debtor. 11 U.S.C. § 523(a)(6). Because debtors have a habit of filing bankruptcy soon after a judgment for such...more

DOJ Warns Against Wrongful Use of Streamline Procedures

The U.S. Department of Justice is considering actions against taxpayers who wrongfully used the Streamlined Procedures to assert non-willful conduct. As quoted in Tax Notes Today...more

Should An Employer Fight Unemployment? The Debate Continues . . .

You may remember that I stirred up some contentiousness a few weeks ago when I suggested that employers should not challenge unemployment claims except in the worst cases. ...more

Illinois Supreme Court Agrees to Decide Breadth of Misconduct Exception for Unemployment Benefits

In the closing days of its January term, the Illinois Supreme Court agreed to hear a case from Division 5 of the First District, Petrovic v. The Department of Employment Security. Petrovic presents an interesting issue on the...more

NLRB Subpoena Benchslap

A Circuit Court has un-tipped the NLRB’s scales in a refusal-to-bargain case. Ozark Auto. Distribs., Inc. v. NLRB, No. 11-1320 (D.C. Cir. February 10, 2015). An employer lost a tight union election and contested the election...more

Successful Appeal Against Dismissal Automatically Revives Employment Contract

In Salmon v Castlebeck Care (Teeside) Ltd & Anor UKEAT/0304/14, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) considered whether a successful appeal against a decision to dismiss needed to be communicated to the employee in order to...more

11th Circuit Addresses Coverage for Alleged Knowing FACTA Violations

In its recent decision in Travelers Prop. Cas. Co. of America v. Kansas City Landsmen, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 453 (11th Cir. Jan. 12, 2015), the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, in a matter of first...more

Judge Will Allow Dow Whistleblower to File Wrongful Termination Suit

A federal judge is allowing an ex-fraud investigator for Dow Chemical Co. to pursue a wrongful termination claim. Kimberly Wood, who had worked for 25 years at Dow before the company fired her in October, alleges that the...more

Keeping Students In Line – Without Repercussions

In 1958, a Brown University senior was expelled because he had the temerity to bring his girlfriend to his dorm room. He did not contemplate litigation. Instead, Ted Turner moved back home to Atlanta to work at his family...more

The Second Circuit Sets New Hurdles for Insider Trading Convictions

Under the Second Circuit’s new ruling, prosecutors have two large hurdles they must clear to convict under securities laws. First, they must prove that a defendant knew that the source of inside information disclosed tips in...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

Persistent mockery, intimidation of supervisor was “juvenile and unworthy of a 12 year old”, warranted 6-month suspension of...

An employee’s persistent mockery and intimidating conduct towards a supervisor warranted a 6-month suspension, an arbitrator has held. The employee’s conduct included the following...more

Judge Scheindlin finds that numerous acts of litigation misconduct constitute an “exceptional case.”

TNS Media Research, LLC, et al. v. Tivo Research and Analytics, Inc. Case Number: 1:11-cv-04039-SAS - Plaintiff Kantar Media (“Kantar”) brought a suit against defendant Tivo Research and Analytics, Inc. (“TRA”)...more

Practitioner Guilty of Inequitable Conduct: Considerations and Takeaways From the American Calcar v. Honda Decision

In its 2011 Therasense, Inc. v. Becton Dickinson & Co. decision, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit set forth a more forgiving "but-for" causality standard for determining whether a patent is unenforceable due to...more

Judge Barbier BP Attempt to Limit Clean Water Act Fines

On September 4, 2014, District Court Judge Carl Barbier issued his “Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law – Phase One Trial” in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill litigation. In his 153 page opinion, Judge Barbier found BP...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

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