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Employment

  • Texting While Driving - Illegal But Paid

    Posted on May 21, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Many municipalities and states have adopted a law that prohibits texting while someone is driving. Individuals are prohibited from texting or even dialing the phone while driving. This prohibition is probably violated much more than it is complied with, but regardless of what the prohibitions may be, employers may still be "on the hook" for paying …   

  • Access to Company Property During Off-Duty Time - No Restrictions

    Posted on May 21, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    An employer would normally think that it could pass a work rule that says an employee does not have access to company property when the employee is off-duty and not working. This makes sense, because there is no reason for the employee to be on company property if they are not there to perform work. We now have to think twice, because the National …   

  • Employers Should Take Required FMLA Notices Seriously - But All Hope is Not Lost if Mistakes are Made

    Posted on May 13, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    When an employee requests a leave of absence that may be for an FMLA-qualifying reason, his or her employer is required to provide notice to the employee of eligibility for leave under the FMLA (as most employers are aware, the Department of Labor has created a handy-dandy form to accomplish this purpose - WH-381). The purpose of the eligibility …   

  • Denying Unemployment Benefits is Starting to Work

    Posted on May 9, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    The definition of misconduct under the Wisconsin Unemployment Compensation Law was changed as of the first of the year. We are now starting to see decisions under this new standard that limit employees from receiving unemployment benefits when being terminated from employment due to inappropriate conduct. For many years, an employer was not able to…   

  • Are Employer-Mandated Anger-Management Counseling Sessions Considered Compensable Time?

    Posted on May 6, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Are employer-mandated anger-management counseling sessions considered compensable "hours worked" for purposes of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act? What if the employee attends anger-management counseling outside of his or her normal working hours? These questions came up recently during a roundtable meeting of an HR group of which I'm fortunate…   

  • Door Open to Working at Home

    Posted on May 2, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    A recent decision from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati has opened the door to the argument that an employer must provide a reasonable accommodation of allowing an employee to work from home instead of being at the office. In this decision, the Court of Appeals held that an employer cannot automatically require that actual presence …   

  • Perfectly Clear Successor - Be Careful

    Posted on April 30, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Two recent events have refocused a concern about becoming a successor owner of a company in a setting where the company is being acquired/purchased. Situations arise on a regular basis where a company will purchase another business with the intention of operating the business as it has been previously operated and simply becoming the new owner of t…   

  • No More Record Keeping for Professionals

    Posted on April 25, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Wisconsin has always been a little different because it required employers to keep a record of the hours worked by a professional employee who was exempt from the overtime pay requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act. This requirement also applied to other exempt employees such as administrative or executive employees that were considered exemp…   

  • Age Discrimination Cases Can be Easy to Prove

    Posted on April 15, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Several recent stories have talked about huge layoffs because of a loss of federal contracts and a decline in available work. Companies are looking at large layoffs to reduce costs and survive the cutbacks in revenue from the loss of contracts. A reduction in the workforce can open the door for age discrimination claims if older employees are selec…   

  • "Quickie Election" Rule Under Attack

    Posted on April 1, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    The National Labor Relations Board will be holding public hearings on April 10 and April 11 regarding the proposed "quickie election" rule that would expedite the election process and reduce the ability of an employer to campaign against a union representation election. Several prior blogs have addressed some of the elements of the proposed rule, b…   

  • First Quarter Touchdown for Student Athletes

    Posted on March 28, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Football players under scholarship at Northwestern University can unionize based upon a decision from the Regional Director of the National Labor Relations Board. This is a touchdown in the first quarter for the student athletes as this is the first stage in a litigation that will likely run for several years. The Regional Director held that the st…   

  • Obesity is a Disability?

    Posted on March 21, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    A number of activities over the past several months have suggested that obesity is on its way to being considered a disability and therefore protected under federal discrimination laws and possibly the Wisconsin Fair Employment Act. No decision has been made holding that obesity is a disability under Wisconsin law, but several things at the federal…   

  • A New Game - Who is Exempt and Who Receives Overtime Pay?

    Posted on March 13, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    As you may have seen in several news reports, President Obama is today directing the Department of Labor to re-write the regulations that identify who is exempt from overtime pay requirements under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The Fair Labor Standards Act does not apply to executive, administrative and professional employees. There are certain min…   

  • "Quickie Election" has First Hearing

    Posted on March 10, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    We have written about the proposed NLRB rules that would allow for a "quickie election" process. The first hearing on these rules was held by a House committee even though this is an NLRB rule and not proposed legislation. The committee wanted to air some of the concerns that employers have expressed about this proposed rule. One presenter noted t…   

  • Is a Policy of 12 Months and You're Out, Out?

    Posted on February 28, 2014, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    The United Parcel Service, Inc.'s (UPS) motion to dismiss a claim filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) challenging the company's leave policy was denied last week by the U.S. District Court in Illinois. EEOC v. United Parcel Service, Inc., N.D. Ill, No. 09C5291, February 11, 2014. For over a decade UPS has maintained a 12-mo…