EEOC Clarifies When Employers May Offer Incentives to Employee's Spouses to Provide Genetic Information.

Earlier this year, this blog brought you a look at proposed rules by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that provided some guidance on how to administer a voluntary employee wellness program without running afoul of the Americans with Disabilities Act. 

Yet, one question remained open for years and was not clarified by those proposed rules—how the EEOC would handle employers offering incentives allowing them to collect certain genetic information of employees' spouses in connection with employer wellness programs. Recently proposed rules seek to clarify that issue. More ›

Amex Employment Arbitration Policy Held Unlawful by NLRB

Amex Card Services Company ("Amex") operates a call center in Phoenix, AZ.  Amex required all new hires to sign an acknowledgement form acknowledging receipt and understanding of its Arbitration Policy as a condition of employment.  The policy mandated final and binding arbitration to resolve all employment-related disputes.  The policy also mandated that all claims subject to arbitration be submitted on an individual basis.  More ›

The EEOC's Battlecry: Cracking Down Hard on Religious Discrimination

On the heels of the biggest religious discrimination case in years, and in line with the EEOC's "hottest litigation trend" (according to David Lopez, General Counsel of the EEOC, pictured right), the EEOC continued its charge against religious discrimination in the workplace in EEOC v. Star Transport Co., Inc..  Last week, a Northern District of Illinois jury awarded two Muslim truck drivers $240,000 finding Start Transport fired them for refusing to transport alcohol despite their religious beliefs. More ›

Facebook “Like” Protected Speech Under the NLRA

We all have them. Friends and family who overshare on Facebook. Their food choices (complete with pictures), exercise routine, and relationship drama, all solidified in the form of a status update. Annoying maybe, but mostly harmless, right? 

But what about status updates about work? Particularly those that criticize a company, supervisor, or work environment? Can your friend’s employer terminate or take recourse against him? Or does social media fall into a category of protected speech the employer cannot touch? More ›

NLRB's Marina Del Rey Decision Provides a Primer On Keeping Employees Out of the Workplace After Hours

In the day and age when employees are working longer hours than ever, would an employer want to ban employees from workplace premises after their shift is over?  Marina Del Rey Hospital did, and implemented a policy preventing employees from accessing the hospital "only as expressly authorized by this policy." The policy allowed "expressly authorized" entry only if the employee was visiting a patient, receiving medical treatment, or conducting hospital-related business, which included an employee's "normal duties" as directed by management.

But can the hospital lawfully do this? Yes and no. The NLRB recently said yes, an employer may prevent off-duty employees from accessing their worksite, but reprimanded the employer for doing so in an unlawful way. More ›

Hinshaw's Misclassification Webinar Series is Coming to Your Area! Sign Up Now!

With recent high-profile cases addressing worker classification issues and the Department of Labor’s issuance of guidance on proper classification, employers across the country are evaluating their independent contractor relationships to determine whether they would survive scrutiny under the many tests applicable to their workers.  Join Hinshaw’s Labor & Employment attorneys for an informative webinar series addressing classification issues that confound even the most sophisticated employers.  More ›

You Down with OPT? DHS Proposes Longer Post-Graduate Work Authorization for STEM Graduates, with a Catch

Last week, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a proposed rule that would amend its F-1 nonimmigrant student visa regulations regarding optional practical training (OPT) for students with higher education degrees in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (i.e., the STEM fields). The proposed rule is in response to a 2015 federal district court case that vacated the current OPT STEM regulations because of alleged procedural errors when those regulations were enacted.  The court stayed its ruling until January 2016, however, allowing the earlier regulations to remain in effect until then and giving DHS time to issue a new rule, which is exactly what they are doing. More ›

The Cat Fights Back: 7th Circuit Discusses Cat's Paw Theory Post-Staub

In 2011, the United States Supreme Court made the"cat's paw" theory of liability significantly easier for employees to prove. An employee can establish a cat's paw theory of liability in an employment discrimination suit when a biased person who lacks the ability to make employment decisions dupes the official decision-maker into committing a discriminatory employment action. The Supreme Court, in Staub v. Proctor Hospital, made it significantly easier for an employee to prove a cat's paw case when it held that a plaintiff need only show "proximate cause" between the biased person and the final decision.  Since then, lower courts have been pouncing on the chance to interpret ambiguities that the Supreme Court left open; last week, the 7th Circuit threw their hat in the ring.  More ›

Join Hinshaw for Its Annual Labor & Employment Seminar in Illinois on October 6, 2015

Hinshaw attorneys are hard at work preparing timely and interesting presentations for our 2015 Labor & Employment Law Seminar, set for Tuesday, October 6, 2015, in Hoffman Estates, Illinois. Have you been wondering...

      • ... what's going on at the NLRB, and how it impacts your company?  
      • ... how the impending changes in FLSA classifications will affect your bottom line?
      • ... how new gun laws, gay marriage, and medical marijuana will impact the workplace?
      • ... what the Supreme Court's bombshell decision in Young v. UPS means for your pregnant employees?
      • ... what your obligations and best practices are for employee retirement plans?
      • ... how on Earth to navigate the dangerous waters of FMLA, ADA and workers comp laws?

Hinshaw experts will be answering all of these questions, as well as providing an annual update of the year's biggest stories, giving you a unique behind-the-scenes look at how Hinshaw attorneys think through common employer questions, and—to end the day—the return of our ever-popular "Advice on Tap" session where Hinshaw attorneys will answer your toughest questions over beer, wine and snacks. 

This year's seminar is being held at the Stonegate Conference & Banquet Centre from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Click to view Hinshaw's 2015 Labor & Employment Seminar brochure for additional details. 

Space is limited, so REGISTER NOW!

DOL Delays Expansion of Home Health Care Worker Benefits

Last month, we highlighted a revival of Department of Labor (DOL) rules expanding overtime and minimum wage coverage to home health care workers. At the time, it appeared likely that the decision in Home Care Association of America v. Weil could lead to the DOL to immediately enforcing previously-blocked 2013 regulations that were effective on January 1, 2015.  More ›