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Employment

  • Federal Court Decision Supports Strict Call-In Procedures

    Posted on August 15, 2013, Authored by Kevin J.T. Terry, Filed under Employment

    Many employers maintain no-fault attendance policies requiring advanced notice of absences and a voluntary quit provision when an employee fails to report to work for two days without providing notice. These policies assist companies in meeting client deadlines and properly monitoring employee performance. The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recentl…   

  • Fox Searchlight Decision Brings Risks of Using Unpaid Interns Out of the Dark

    Posted on August 13, 2013, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Recently, a federal court in New York concluded that a group of workers (production workers who worked on production of the film Black Swan) classified as "unpaid interns" by a motion picture distribution company should have been classified as employees for purposes of federal wage and overtime laws. The case is Glatt v. Fox Searchlight Pictures, I…   

  • Employee Requests for Accommodations for Non-Traditional Religious Observances - Practice What You PREACH

    Posted on August 9, 2013, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Most employers are at least remotely familiar with the requirement under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to provide reasonable accommodations in response to employee requests to participate in religious observances or practices, if doing so does not cause demonstrable (not hypothetical or speculative) undue hardship to the employer's busi…   

  • Management Comments can Create a Smoking Gun for Discrimination Claims

    Posted on August 7, 2013, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    A recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit gives a prime example of how comments by an employer-representative can support a claim of discrimination. A sales manager in his late fifties showed a potential basis for a claim of age discrimination because of the comments made by a younger supervisor. The record of comments ca…   

  • Wisconsin Insurance Commissioner Announces Insurers Participating in Marketplace

    Posted on August 7, 2013, Authored by Mary Ellen Schill, Filed under Employment

    On August 6 the Wisconsin Office of Commissioner of Insurance released the names of the insurers who have applied to participate in Wisconsin's federally facilitated Exchange (the Wisconsin Marketplace). Thirteen insurers have applied to participate in the individual Marketplace (marketing qualified health plans to individuals only), while nine ins…   

  • Partially Deaf Worker May Require Accommodation

    Posted on August 2, 2013, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    I wrote several blogs about potential areas of new disability claims relating to the use of caffeine and a new mental health disorder that may affect non-productive employees. A recent federal court case held that a partially deaf retail store pharmacy technician was entitled to file a disability claim when her employer placed the employee on indef…   

  • Waiting For The Affordable Care Act Marketplace To Open

    Posted on July 25, 2013, Authored by Mary Ellen Schill, Filed under Employment

    Late last month I returned to the scene of an earlier crime (October 2012) and once again met with employer-members of the Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce to talk about the Affordable Care Act and the October 1 opening of the Marketplace (formerly known as the Exchange). I think it is safe to say that both me and my audience had grown a little …   

  • One-Year Delay for Pay or Play Does Not Affect October 1 Opening of the Marketplace (Maybe)!

    Posted on July 22, 2013, Authored by Mary Ellen Schill, Filed under Employment

    The Obama Administration's announcement of the one year delay for the employer shared responsibility requirements (the "pay or play" mandate) did not directly impact the October 1 opening of the health insurance exchanges (now known as the Marketplace). Last month I had the opportunity to sit on a panel at a public forum here in Wausau which discus…   

  • Must You Accommodate the Bored Worker?

    Posted on July 3, 2013, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    I wrote several weeks ago about the changes made to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) and the suggestion that caffeine withdrawal was now a disability that required some level of accommodation from an employer. Another change is the recognition of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) as a new disability. This diagnosis inc…   

  • Treasury Department Postpones ACA Employer Mandate To 2015

    Posted on July 2, 2013, Authored by Mary Ellen Schill, Filed under Employment

    The Treasury Department announced late Tuesday afternoon that it was delaying until 2015 the employer "shared responsibility" mandate, the Affordable Care Act mandate for large employers, until 2015. This means that employers with more than 50 full time equivalents will NOT be subject to penalties in 2014 for failing to offer coverage, or failing t…   

  • Is the NLRB Alive? Supreme Court Will Decide

    Posted on June 27, 2013, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    On Monday, the United State Supreme Court granted certiorari (meaning they have agreed to hear a case) on whether the appointments by President Obama in January 2012 to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) are valid appointments or improper application of the "between" session presidential appointment process. President Obama appointed two mem…   

  • How the DOMA Decision Affects Employee Benefit Plan Sponsors

    Posted on June 26, 2013, Authored by Mary Ellen Schill, Filed under Employment

    This morning, in a 5-4 decision, the United States Supreme Court ruled in United States v. Windsor that the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. On equal protection grounds, the Court held that if a state has recognized same sex marriages, then the federal government must honor those marriages with respect to federal benefits…   

  • Supreme Court Hands Employers Victory: Court Adopts Narrow Definition of "Supervisor" in Sex Harassment Cases

    Posted on June 25, 2013, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its long-awaited opinion in the Vance v. Ball State case (find a copy of the opinion here). The Court established the proper definition of "supervisor" under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (which governs, among other things, sexual harassment under federal law). The Court espoused …   

  • Walk-Off Home Run Beats Employer in the Bottom of the Ninth

    Posted on June 20, 2013, Authored by Kevin J.T. Terry, Filed under Employment

    All sports fans know that in baseball, it is a critical advantage to be the home team. This is because the home team bats last in the ninth inning and has the last crack at hitting the game winning home run. A recent case in New York (Allen v. Chanel, Inc.) illustrated why it is just as important to for an employer to be the "home" team when dealin…   

  • Sorting Out the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace - Forum Provides Answers (and More Questions!)

    Posted on June 17, 2013, Authored by Mary Ellen Schill, Filed under Employment

    On Thursday evening June 13, I had the pleasure of participating in a public forum sponsored by the Wisconsin Institute for Public Policy and Service entitled, "Preparing for the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace: A View from Wisconsin." As one of three panelists, I was asked to talk about how employers large and small are preparing for the Mark…