Category Archives: Policies

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Happy Thanksgiving and the Many Things for Which We Are Thankful

Before everyone gets out of the office to their various homes and families to celebrate the holiday, we wanted to review the year and count our blessings. Not only are we thankful that our families and colleagues in our Houston and Tampa offices weathered the storms safely, we are also thankful for the following legal … Continue Reading

Why the Harvey Weinstein Scandal Should Scare the Pants Off Employers

Unless you have been living in a cave for the last month, you have heard about the sexual misconduct allegations against Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein. The story has all of the makings of a Hollywood blockbuster, except this time it’s not a movie. Here’s why it should also raise the curtain for employers outside of … Continue Reading

Trick or Treat? Employee Claims Discrimination After Attending Office Halloween Party

Before you send out that next office-wide invite to a “holiday” party, think twice. Carmelite Lofton has sued her employer, BSN Sports, LLC—a Texas uniform and equipment retailer—when things turned sour after she was forced to attend an office Halloween party. Lofton—an African American and a Christian, says the party was contrary to her religious … Continue Reading

Changing of the Leaves: EEOC Again Pushes for Additional Leave as ADA Accommodation

We have said it before — the EEOC believes that leave is a reasonable accommodation and automatic termination when FMLA leave runs out violates the Americans with Disabilities Act. Even though at least one federal court has made clear it disagrees, the EEOC continues to press the point and has recently filed a lawsuit against … Continue Reading

Sad Dad Wants Paid Leave to Care for Newborn Lad; Employer’s Leave Policy Is Not So Rad; ACLU Gets Mad

Can an employer distinguish between moms and dads when granting paid parental leave for care for a newborn? Bank JP Morgan appears to believe so. Derek Rotondo requested parental leave when his wife was expecting their second child. Under JP Morgan’s policies, mothers are by default considered primary caregivers and are automatically entitled to 16 weeks of paid … Continue Reading

“But My Doctor Said It Was Cool”: Florida’s New Medical Marijuana Bill and Employment Considerations

Last month, Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed into law a medical marijuana use bill. This was the result of the overwhelming vote (71 percent) in favor of amending the Florida Constitution to allow medical marijuana use as prescribed by a licensed Florida physician. Florida now joins 27 other states that have legalized at least some … Continue Reading

EEOC To Employers: Requiring Employees to Return to Work with “No Restrictions” Could Get You Sued

Before the Americans with Disabilities Act (and there was a time before the ADA), it was not uncommon to require employees to have a doctor’s note returning them to work “with no restrictions.” That won’t work in today’s ADA world, and the EEOC’s recent complaint against M&T Bank Corporation in New York provides a clear reminder. … Continue Reading

Another Facially Neutral Employment Policy Bites the Dust

About a year ago, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) struck down another neutral employer workplace rule – this one against making unauthorized recordings in the workplace. The NLRB’s decision just was affirmed by the federal appeals court in New York this month. It seems that yet another common sense rule bites the … Continue Reading

Employers Hold Up on the Hand Out Policies: 11th Circuit Classifies Company Non-Solicitation Policy as Overbroad

You know that short non-solicitation policy in your handbook that says don’t handout stuff at work that doesn’t have to do with work that you think is clearly legal? Think again. A recent Eleventh Circuit decision agreed with a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) opinion that found a one line non-solicitation policy to violate employees’ … Continue Reading

Bend Don’t Break: The EEOC Says Inflexible Attendance Policies Violate the ADA

In managing employee attendance, be careful about policies that suggest automatic termination after a certain number of absences as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) believes such policies violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The EEOC has filed suit against Wayne Farms, a poultry plant, alleging the company’s attendance policy, which allegedly required the … Continue Reading

Check Your Neutral Policies: The EEOC Joins the ACLU’s Challenge to Dignity Health’s Exclusion of All Care Related to Sex Transitions as Sex Discrimination

The ACLU filed a complaint against Dignity Health, claiming that the total exclusion of care related to “sex transformation surgery” in Dignity’s employee health insurance plan is unlawful sex discrimination. Now the EEOC wants a piece of the action and is seeking permission to file an amicus brief urging the California federal court not to … Continue Reading

United States Supreme Court Upholds University of Texas Affirmative Action Policy

In a 4-3 decision released today, in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, the United States Supreme Court affirmed that the University’s race-conscious admissions policy meets strict judicial scrutiny and is lawful under the Equal Protection Clause. Fisher, who is white, claimed that the University’s consideration of race as one factor in a “holistic review” … Continue Reading
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