Showing 115 posts from 2012.

Employer not Required to hire Independent Contractors to Accommodate Employee’s Religious Observance

The Fourth Circuit recently held that an employer did not have to hire independent contractors or take other action which would have been detrimental to other employees in order to accommodate the religious beliefs of one of its drivers. More ›

EEOC Announces Strategic Enforcement Plan

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently approved a Strategic Enforcement Plan. This Plan establishes national enforcement priorities and promotes more strategic use of agency resources, all with the goal of remedying unlawful discrimination.  More ›

Layoff Found to be Valid Position of Reemployment Under USERRA

The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that a layoff as a part of a workforce reduction is a valid "position of reemployment" for purposes of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA).  More ›

Illinois Court: Employee Handbook Created “Agreement” to Support Employees’ wage Claim, even Where Disclaimers Prevented “Contract”

A federal district court judge in Northern Illinois has ruled that an employee handbook, while not a “contract”, may still be an “agreement” upon which employees may rely — and sue. In this particular case, the judge denied the employer’s motion to dismiss a claim under the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act (IWPCA), finding that the handbook’s statements regarding compensation were an “agreement” upon which the employees’ could base their claim, despite the handbook’s numerous disclaimers stating that no legally enforceable promise was being made. The ruling, while narrowly applied in this case to support an IWPCA claim, could potentially raise major issues for Illinois employers that rely on such disclaimers to protect themselves against claims based on handbook provisions. More ›

Employer Successfully Defends Termination of Employee at Conclusion of FMLA Leave

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that an employer did not violate the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) by terminating an employee who failed to return to work after exhausting her leave. More ›

Virginia: Employees can sue Individual Supervisors for Wrongful Termination in Violation of Public Policy

A nurse who worked at an orthopedic spine center claimed that she was subjected to sexual harassment by her supervisor, a doctor who was the owner of the center. When she refused to leave her husband to be with the doctor, he allegedly fired her. She filed suit, claiming gender discrimination as well as wrongful discharge against both the center and the doctor. Both parties filed motions to dismiss, and the doctor prevailed on his motion because the district court found that wrongful discharge claims by an employee are cognizable only against the employer and not against supervisors in their individual capacity. The nurse appealed to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, which then certified the following question to the Virginia Supreme Court:  More ›

Seventh Circuit Orders Jury Trial Because Employer Couldn’t Prove date of Phone Call Triggering Title VII’s 300-Day Limitations Period

A Wisconsin employer is facing a federal jury trial, all because it failed to properly document a simple phone call. In a decision issued yesterday, Begolli v. Home Depot U.S.A., Inc. et al, No. 12-1875 (7th Cir. Nov. 29, 2012), the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals revived a plaintiff’s discrimination claim against the employer after a lower court had dismissed the suit, finding that a question of fact existed as to whether the plaintiff had filed within Title VII's 300-day limitations period. The trial was necessary because the employer could not prove when it had called the plaintiff to deny his employment application. More ›

Seventh Circuit Upholds Decision in Favor of Employer in Race Discrimination Case

Two African-American nurses filed a complaint against their hospital-employer alleging that the hospital had discriminated against them on the basis of race and retaliated against them for their complaints about racial discrimination in violation of Title VII. Throughout their employment, both nurses complained about their working conditions. They alleged their supervisors failed to make the changes that they recommended and treated them less favorably due to their race. The nurses also alleged that they were retaliated against due to their complaints of race discrimination. More ›

Christian Employee Lacks Religious Accommodation Claim

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently addressed the issue of accommodations of employees' religious practices. More ›

Hospital’s Challenge to NLRB Health care rule Denied

A hospital challenged the National Labor Relations Board's (NLRB) certification of the union as the representative of a "wall to wall" bargaining unit of the hospital's professional and non-professional employees. The hospital claimed that the Health Care Rule (which limited the number and type of bargaining units allowed in an acute care setting) violated the National Labor Relations Act, Section 9(c)(5) because it endorsed the extent of a union's organization as the controlling factor in determining bargaining units. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, however, rejected this argument, as well as the hospital's argument that the NLRB violated the Rule because the union was required to show, and the Board was required to find, extraordinary circumstances to join together a number of the Rule's designated units. The Court of Appeals, however, found that such a showing was not required under the Rule. More ›