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Chemist’s circumstantial evidence too basic to prove ADA claim

DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION - It’s rare for an employer to announce that it is illegally discriminating against someone. An employee who is a victim of illegal discrimination most often is left with only circum­stantial...more

Stone walls (and policies) do a prison make: UDC bound by its rules

PERSONNEL POLICIES - While sitting in prison in 1642, the English poet Richard Lovelace penned his most famous lines: “Stone walls do not a prison make, nor iron bars a cage.” While Lovelace’s words about the nature and...more

How Utah evaluates a worker’s entitlement to PTD benefits

Have you ever thought about how the word “limit” de­fines our perceptions of and interactions with the world around us? The concept of a “limit” engenders thoughts of a bound­ary, an edge, or an end. When we say something is...more

Avoiding an explosive situation: fireworks in the workplace

OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY - Boom! The sky is filled with glimmering light in all colors of the rainbow, and the crowd “Oohs” and “Aahs.” It’s that time of year, when roadside fireworks stands start popping up on every street...more

Utah Legislature’s amendments to two wage statutes now in effect

Although the origin of the phrase “jumping through hoops” is uncertain, it is generally accepted that it probably was a reference to circus animals jumping through hoops to please their trainers. The phrase is often used to...more

Stage is set for SCOTUS to rule on Title VII and sexual orientation

DISCRIMINATION - Since the civil rights movement of the 1960s, state and fed­eral laws have been enacted to prohibit employment discrimi­nation against individuals on the basis of their race, ethnicity, age, disability,...more

Shifting sands: the changing landscape of transgender discrimination

Laws related to transgender discrimination are in a state of rapid flux. In the past couple of years, courts’ views on the law, particularly federal ones, have swung back and forth like a pendulum. Indeed, the interpretation...more

Unclear crystal ball: What might 2017 hold for employers?

In 2016, employers were confronted with many new laws, regulations, and issues. Companies geared up for a substantial change in the overtime rule, which ultimately didn’t take effect after a federal judge in Texas issued an...more

U.S. Supreme Court to consider transgender restroom lawsuit

Society’s view of gender has evolved significantly since then. The rigid dichotomy of a two-gender world view is frequently challenged and, in some cases, rejected outright. As society’s views on gender morph, the law is...more

Court blocks DOL’s new overtime rule from taking effect

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) generally requires employers to pay employees at least the federal minimum wage (currently $7.25 per hour). The FLSA also requires employers to pay employees overtime compensation for all...more

Federal Court Blocks New Overtime Rule from Taking Effect

The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) generally requires that most employers pay nonexempt employees overtime compensation for all hours worked over 40 during a workweek. Overtime compensation must be at least one and...more

Merger does not invalidate noncompete, nonsolicitation covenants

When corporate mergers and acquisitions take place, the parties frequently ask, “What is the effect on the acquired company’s contracts?” That was the issue in a case involving noncompetition and nonsolicitation covenants in...more

DOL's final rule increases minimum salary for overtime exemptions

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) generally requires employers to pay employees at least the federal minimum wage and overtime compensation for all hours worked over 40 in a workweek. Overtime pay must be at least 1½ times...more

DOL Issues Final Rule Increasing the Salary Threshold for the Overtime Exemptions

The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) generally requires employers to pay non-exempt employees overtime compensation for all hours worked over 40 in a workweek. Overtime compensation must be at least one and one-half times...more

Sharing is caring: Are Uber, Lyft drivers independent contractors?

Whether workers are properly classified as employees or independent contractors has been an increasingly hot topic in discussions about the American labor market. Independent contractors are deemed to own their own business,...more

Utah Passes New Law Placing Restrictions on Noncompetition Agreements

On March 9th, 2016, the Utah Legislature passed a bill, which the governor signed, substantially limiting an employer's ability to use noncompetition covenants to prevent former employees from competing against them. The new...more

New Utah law limits use of noncompetition agreements

Many employers are confronted by the problem of former employees using company information or relationships they had access to or developed during their employment. Employers have sought protection by having employees agree...more

Employee terminated despite manual’s assurances against retaliation

It is often said that “a promise is a promise,” but what does that adage mean? A promise is a statement or declaration that a person will or will not do something. In most cases, a promise is not enforceable under the law...more

Why do employers need employee handbooks?

Our company CEO told me not to worry about drafting an employee handbook. What can I say to change his mind and convince him it’s a good idea to have a handbook? There are many reasons why you should have an employee...more

Employers: Check the law before checking an applicant's background

A new hire is always a risk. There is concern that a new employee may not be a good fit or as qualified for the job as expected. Worse, the new hire could be a significant safety or liability risk. A poor hiring decision can...more

Conducting a pay-to-play fantasy sports league may be gambling with the law

Participation in fantasy sports has exploded in the United States in the past few years. Anyone listening to sports radio or watching ESPN will be overwhelmed by advertisements from fantasy football organizations soliciting...more

Is it legal to ask for a social security number on an application?

Q. Our current job application asks for the applicant’s SSN. Is that legal? I feel it might not be a good idea with all the high-profile news of identity theft. Originally published in the Utah Legal Law Letter....more

Do I need to display E-Verify posters?

Q. Are employers that use E-Verify required to post anything special or communicate anything differently to candidates or employees?...more

Withholding an employee’s wages does not pay

Q. Is it legal to establish a policy stating that if an employee doesn’t turn in a time card at the specified time, he won’t get paid? A. The simple answer is "no." You certainly can establish a policy requiring...more

Can I ask an employee to stop talking about a harassment claim at work?

One of our employees filed a sexual harassment claim with HR. We conducted an investigation but found no evidence to support her claim. The employee continues to discuss the situation with coworkers, and it’s becoming...more

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