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Employment

  • The DOL Has Had a Busy Summer!

    Posted on July 28, 2015, Authored by Sara J. Ackermann, Filed under Employment

    The DOL has had a busy summer!  From proposed overtime rules to independent misclassification warnings, the prudent employer should take notice.  For more information, see my two recent legal updates: Hey Employers! The DOL is Watching - Are Your Workers Properly Classified?, and What is the Overtime Proposal and Why Should I Care?   

  • Warning: Independent Contractors May Be Employees

    Posted on July 22, 2015, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    The Administrator of the US Department of Labor has issued guidance on determining whether an individual is an independent contractor or an employee of a company.  This Interpretive Guidance goes a long way to declaring that the Department of Labor will be aggressively reviewing determinations of independent contractor status by a company and will …   

  • Fairly Debatable IME Report Defeats Bad Faith Claim in Worker’s Compensation

    Posted on July 6, 2015, Authored by Russell W. Wilson, Filed under Employment

    This scenario in worker’s compensation is familiar.  A worker has a pre-existing, degenerating, and progressively deteriorating condition, in this case an old injury to his knee.  Later, there’s an accident at work, shortly after which, knee surgery is required.  The treating physician believes the work-injury necessitated the surgery and permanent…   

  • Cucumber Farm in a Pickle: Farm’s Classification of Migrant Workers as Independent Contractors Violates Wage and Hour Law

    Posted on June 29, 2015, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    Recently, a federal appeals court determined that a cucumber farm violated the Fair Labor Standards Act when it classified its migrant laborers as independent contractors instead of employees, and failed to pay them the applicable minimum wage.  The case is Perez v. D. Howes, LLC, No. 14-2026, --- F.3d ----, 2015 WL 3833529 (6th Cir. 2015).  Throug…   

  • U.S. Supreme Court Rules in King v. Burwell – Subsidies Available in All States

    Posted on June 25, 2015, Authored by Mary Ellen Schill, Filed under Employment

    The United States Supreme Court just held in the King v. Burwell case that taxpayers in states that have not established their own exchange are still entitled to the premium assistance subsidies. Read more about the decision here.   

  • I Hate my Boss - Disability?

    Posted on June 9, 2015, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    A recent decision by an appellate court in California held that the inability of an employee to work with a particular supervisor because of anxiety and stress caused by oversight from the supervisor was not a disability under California Disability Discrimination Law.  As a result, the company did not discriminate against an employee who was termin…   

  • Quickie Election Rules Increase Union Activity

    Posted on June 5, 2015, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    The NLRB “quickie election” rules have been in effect for the past six weeks.  As predicted, the implementation of these new rules has resulted in a significant increase in union election petitions.  Under these new rules, the procedure to move from the filing of a petition to an actual election amongst employees takes approximately three weeks and…   

  • Accommodating Religious Practices – Use Your “Best Guess”

    Posted on June 3, 2015, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    The United States Supreme Court, in the recent Abercrombie & Fitch decision, has said employers must use their best guess to determine whether or not an employee (or applicant) wants or needs an accommodation for a legitimate religious belief.  In this decision, the Supreme Court held that the clothing company violated the religious discriminat…   

  • Arbitration Clauses and the Impact of Their Terms

    Posted on May 27, 2015, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    The Wisconsin Supreme Court recently addressed the authority of circuit courts to assess and adjudge arbitration matters. In First Weber Group, Inc. v. Synergy Real Estate Group, LLC, 2015 WI 34 (March 24, 2015) determinations and rulings regarding multiple issues were made. In pertinent part, the parties ultimately disputed over an arbitration cla…   

  • Seventh Circuit Affirms “Willful” OSHA Violation

    Posted on May 18, 2015, Authored by Russell W. Wilson, Filed under Employment

    The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals has issued a decision that is interesting for its discussion and analysis of what a “willful” OSHA violation means. A worker for a precast concrete manufacturer fell into a sand bin in which he became engulfed up to his neck. Fortunately, he survived, but the complicated five hour rescue caused serious injuries.…   

  • Employer Waived the Exclusive Remedy Protection of Worker’s Compensation

    Posted on May 11, 2015, Authored by Russell W. Wilson, Filed under Employment

    The important protection that employers have under Wisconsin’s Worker’s Compensation Act is the exclusive remedy against employees for work-related accidents, conditions, or illnesses. While the employer enjoys near immunity from a civil suit, that protection can be waived. The Wisconsin Court of Appeals recently held that an employer had waived it…   

  • The Wide Expanse of the ADA

    Posted on May 8, 2015, Authored by Ruder Ware Attorneys, Filed under Employment

    A recent lawsuit filed in the federal district court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania alleges that an employer violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by terminating an employee who had a doctor-diagnosed sleep disorder. According to the filing, the disorder limits the hours of the day and night during which the employee is able …   

  • IRS Announces HSA Cost of Living Adjustments

    Posted on May 4, 2015, Authored by Mary Ellen Schill, Filed under Employment

    Each spring (or late winter for those of us lucky enough to be living in Wisconsin), the IRS adjusts the various maximums (and minimums) for health savings accounts for the upcoming calendar year. The tax code (Code Section 223 if you want to play along at home) provides for annual “cost of living” adjustments for some of the HSA limits. Interestin…   

  • Federal Court Applies Worker’s Compensation Exclusive Remedy to Asbestos Secondary Exposure Lawsuit

    Posted on April 20, 2015, Authored by Russell W. Wilson, Filed under Employment

    Plaintiffs in asbestos personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits often attempt to circumvent the exclusive remedy of worker’s compensation. The federal district court for the Western District of Wisconsin has recently applied Wisconsin’s exclusive remedy provision to dismiss a Wisconsin employer from an asbestos lawsuit brought by an employee. Th…   

  • Federal Court Says Working From Home is Not Automatic Accommodation

    Posted on April 15, 2015, Authored by Dean R. Dietrich, Filed under Employment

    A recent decision by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals held that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission failed in its claim that Ford Motor Company violated the Americans With Disabilities Act by failing to accommodate an employee with irritable bowel syndrome when the employee requested to work from home on four days of the work week.  The …