Willful Misconduct

News & Analysis as of

Definition of “Deliberate and Willful” Misconduct Under the Illinois Unemployment Insurance Act Revised and Expanded

Governor Rauner recently signed legislation that revised and expanded the definition of “deliberate and willful” misconduct under the Illinois Unemployment Insurance Act (820 ILCS 405/602). Under the prior definition, the...more

Court of Appeals Overturns Defense Verdict In Medical Malpractice Conditional Consent Case: Carter v. The Pain Center of Arizona

After a fall, Carter met with Dr. Towns, who recommended a sacrococcygeal ligament injection for her pain. When Carter expressed anxiety about the injection, Towns offered to sedate her for the procedure. When Carter returned...more

Federal Appeals Court Decision Offers Practical Guidance To Both HR Executives And Their Employers

A federal appeals court issued a decision on January 5, 2016 that provides valuable lessons to both human resources executives and the businesses they work for. The court upheld the termination of an HR Director after his...more

VW Scandal Bears Out Emphasis on “Culture of Compliance”

Last week, VW blamed its “culture” for allowing “individual misconduct” that lead to the emissions-testing-evasion scandal engulfing the company. It reminded me of a couple of corporate-compliance mantras and of DOJ’s recent...more

“I guess I’d have to kill you” remark could not reasonably have been interpreted as a “viable threat”: fired worker entitled to...

A worker’s comment that “I guess I’d have to kill you” was clearly inappropriate but did not constitute wilful misconduct under the Ontario Employment Standards Act, the Ontario Labour Relations Board has held. The case...more

Canadian Employment News Series: Ontario Human Rights Tribunal awards record-setting damages against employer for workplace sexual...

Earlier this year, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal (“HRTO”) awarded record damages for sexual misconduct in favour of two female temporary foreign workers in the O.P.T. v Presteve Foods Ltd. decision (the “Presteve...more

The Second Appellate District Finds UCLA Not Liable For Third Party Criminal Acts of a Student With a Known Mental Illness

The Regents of the University of California, et al. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County Katherine Rosen, Real Party in Interest - Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District(October 7, 2015) - The issue in this...more

The Appropriate Punishment for Actual and Perceived Threats in the Workplace-Take Two; the Appellate Court (Sensibly) Speaks

Last year, I wrote about an unsuccessful attempt to vacate a puzzling arbitration award that overturned the termination of a school custodian who made threats of violence. In a decision that was officially issued on October...more

PCAOB Announces First Settled Order with Admissions

Last week, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) joined the list of regulators who will, in certain circumstances, seek admissions of liability from audit firms and individuals in settlements. Although the...more

Deflategate: Four Games and Four Lessons for Unionized Employers

This week would have marked the return of Tom Brady, had his four game suspension not been reversed by the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Much ink has been spilled over Brady’s suspension...more

The Chill is Gone: SEC Wants Unfettered Whistleblowers

The SEC continues its efforts to support whistleblowers. The whistleblower program promulgated by the Commission under the Dodd-Frank Act offers rewards to individuals who report securities law violations. As we have...more

SEC Commissioners Making a “Noisy Exit”

Securities and Exchange Commission members Daniel M. Gallagher and Luis A. Aguilar will soon leave the SEC, but neither is keeping quiet about the SEC’s treatment of chief compliance officers (CCOs). Gallagher recently...more

DOJ Reaffirms Commitment to Prosecuting Individuals, Toughens Expectation for Corporate Response

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recently issued a memorandum ("The Yates memo") on September 9, 2015 by Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, reaffirming the Government's commitment to prosecuting individuals. Say...more

Accidentally On Purpose: Washington Court Finds Coverage For Contempt Of Court Based On “Misunderstanding”

Professional liability policies cover claims based on the insured’s alleged negligent acts, errors or omissions, and not claims for “sanctions or penalties” for “willful” professional misconduct. But the insurer’s duty to...more

New Jersey Supreme Court Holds That Economic Loss is Not Needed To Recoup a Former Employee’s Salary for Breach of the Duty of...

On September 22, the New Jersey Supreme Court unanimously gave the green light to awards of the remedy of equitable disgorgement, even in the absence of economic loss, as a fair and practical response to an employee’s...more

DOJ Unveils New Policy on Individual Liability in White-Collar Prosecutions

On September 9, the Department of Justice (DOJ), issued a policy memorandum concerning DOJ’s goal of holding individuals accountable for corporate fraud or other misconduct. While some of the guidelines set forth in the...more

The DOJ’s New Policy of Prosecuting Individuals

On September 9, 2015, Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates of the United States Department of Justice (“DOJ” or the “Department”) issued a new policy memorandum (the “Yates Memo”) entitled “Individual Accountability for...more

Securities Litigation and Enforcement Newsletter

A CD or not a CD, That is the Question… That the Auditors Should Have Answered - A headline-grabbing SEC enforcement action last week against BDO USA and several of its national partners may lead audit firms to insist on...more

Pointing the Finger The New Price of Corporate Cooperation

On September 9, 2015, Sally Quillian Yates, the Deputy Attorney General, issued a memorandum announcing the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) new guidelines regarding its intensifying focus on individual wrongdoers in the context...more

Department of Justice Focuses on Individual Accountability

In a move certain to attract the attention of corporate executives, the Department of Justice, on September 9, 2015, issued a new policy memorandum regarding the prosecution of individuals in corporate fraud cases. Titled...more

Corporate Wrongdoing: More Civil and Criminal Liability for Individuals?

The US Department of Justice has issued a memorandum to all of its prosecuting Divisions, directing changes to the principles applied by DOJ in prosecuting civilly or criminally individuals who engage in corporate misconduct....more

DOJ Guidance Prioritizes Individuals in Criminal and Civil Corporate Enforcement Actions

A serious shift of focus to individual accountability may impact traditional corporate defense and settlement tactics. On September 9, 2015, the Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a set of guidelines that formally revise...more

"Department of Justice Issues Guidance to Criminal and Civil Prosecutors to Facilitate Individual Prosecutions in Corporate...

On September 9, 2015, the Department of Justice (the Department) publicly announced that it had issued guidance to its criminal and civil prosecutors that purports to change, at least in part, the Department’s approach to...more

OSHA Violations: Managers and Others May Have Personal Civil and/or Criminal Liability

Historically, there are few criminal convictions for violations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, and the majority of those violations were related to dishonesty during OSHA inspections and interviews. Though...more

Bridging the Week - September 2015

Alleged Flash Crasher's Formal Indictment Provides More Details Regarding His Purported Spoofing - The US Department of Justice filed a formal indictment against Navinder Singh Sarao in a US federal court in Chicago on...more

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