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Keeping You Posted

Recent developments in employment and labor law


Howard Kastrinsky


Chris Barrett

Keeping You Posted provides you with the latest updates in employment and labor law. As a supplement to Employment Law Comment, Keeping You Posted supplies you with a review of current federal and state cases, as well as legislative and regulatory changes, from your perspective as an employer.

Some of the many topics we discuss in Keeping You Posted include federal discrimination laws, the National Labor Relations Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act, and the Occupation Safety and Health act. Other topics include immigration and workplace privacy, including emerging trends in social media in the workplace. Add the RSS feed above to your favorites, and stay up-to-date on the issues that affect your Company.
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If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck...

Friday, 31 May 2013 00:00


Employees may be protected against discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) even though they are not actually a part of a protected class.  It may be enough for the employee to be “perceived as” part of a protected class in order to be afforded protection under Title VII.  Mary Leigh Pirtle explains this expanded approach to discrimination claims.


Legally Blind Individuals May Be Allowed to Play Paint-Ball

Wednesday, 29 May 2013 08:12


Blind paint-ballers sounds like an oxymoron at first glance.  The risk of allowing blind patron to run around a traditionally outdoor area with automatic assault weapons being fired at them and others, would probably ring “100% chance of lawsuit” in the minds of the facility owners.  However, for one paintball manager, the lawsuit occurred when he denied a group of blind individuals from participating in the mini version of WWIII.

Inaccessibly has become a hot bed of legal action for the plaintiff’s bar in recent years.  The Americans with Disabilities Act, Title II & III, requires equal access to not only the physical aspects of facilities open to the public, but the programs and services which theses facilities provide.  The scope of the ADA is much broader than your stereotypical individual confided to a wheelchair.  In this recent federal case, Doug Hanson writes about how one company narrowly avoided liability under the ADA’s broad reach covering the seeing impaired.


Employers May Soon Have More Leeway to Require Medical Examinations of Employees

Friday, 24 May 2013 10:07


The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was cited as having been violated by employers within 26% of all EEOC Charges filed in 2012 - over 26,300 Charges.  Typically, when we talk about the ADA we are referring to an employee who is claiming to be disabled and whose employer has failed to accommodate this alleged disability.  However, did you know that the ADA protects non-disabled individuals as well?  Yes, the ADA generally prohibits an employer from asking any employee medically related questions and/or requiring employees to undergo medical treatment/evaluations which are not business related.

In a recent case, Robert Crump writes about how crucial one major U.S. corporation’s well-drafted job description can be when attempting to prove that medically related questions and mandated evaluations are in fact business related.


ERISA contract terms unfair? Tough Luck

Tuesday, 21 May 2013 08:29


Judges may not rewrite an Employee Retirement Income Security (ERISA) health plan document just because it’s unfair, according to the U. S. Supreme Court.  In a case generally applicable to all employee benefit plan contracts, Mary Leigh Pirtle writes about the Court’s instruction and advice for employers to draft around commonplace doctrines which would otherwise limit employer’s rights and potentially expand their liability.  


Single Employer Status under NLRA

Monday, 20 May 2013 08:00


The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) has recently been in the news, not for what it has decided, but for how it made its decisions.  With two federal appeals courts ruling that President Obama unconstitutionally made recess appointments to the Board, the legality of NLRB decisions dating back to 2011 will have to be determined by the Supreme Court.  In the meantime, the NLRB continues to pump out decisions, in many cases overturning or expanding the reach of prior decisions.  Courts of appeals continue to review those Board decisions.  In one recent case, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit considered application of the Board’s single employer doctrine.  Sean McLean explains in this article.


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