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Seventh Circuit Affirms $175,000.00 Award for Emotional Distress in Title VII Claim Despite Employee’s Lack of Medical Evidence

Posted on September 22, 2005 by

On September 7, 2005, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a district court decision that had awarded $175,000 to a Hispanic woman who claimed she was wrongfully denied a promotion by the City of Chicago. Deloughery v. City of Chicago, No. 02 C 2722 (7th Cir. Sept. 7, 2005). Delores […]

Wisconsin Labor and Industry Review Commission Rejects Faragher/Ellerth Defense

Posted on June 9, 2005 by

In a recent decision, the Wisconsin Labor and Industry Review Commission (LIRC) expressly rejected the Faragher/Ellerth defense that the Supreme Court articulated for employers in its infamous 1998 decisions.   In Faragher v. City of Boca Raton, 524 U.S. 775 (1998) and Burlington Industries, Inc. v. Ellerth, 524 U.S. 742 (1998), the United States Supreme […]

Important IRS Guidance Allows a Second Chance for Flexible Spending Account Participants Before Application of “Use It or Lose It” to Unspent Funds

Posted on May 19, 2005 by

On May 18, 2005, the IRS issued a notice which provides significant relief from the “use it or lose it” rule which applies to amounts set aside in flexible spending accounts. Prior to this new guidance, only expenses incurred during the plan year could be reimbursed from dependent care and medical reimbursement flexible spending accounts […]

Government Employee’s First Amendment Right to Free Speech Involving Their Employment Must Give Rise to a “Public Concern” in Order to be Protected

Posted on May 19, 2005 by

The First Amendment of the United States Constitution provides that “Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom of speech.” Inherent in the right of free speech is the right to criticize the government for the actions that effect its citizens. But what if you work for the government? Is public criticism of a […]

Seventh Circuit Finds Sexual Comments Are “Inappropriate” But Not “Harassment”

Posted on May 12, 2005 by

Rhonda Moser sued her employer for sexual harassment. In her claim, she alleged a male co-worker “harassed” her, and she cited several specific examples of his behavior. Specifically, she alleged that her co-worker: talked “down to her;” made reference to her “tits;” told other male co-workers to “watch out because Ms. Moser likes good-looking men;” […]

The U.S. Supreme Court Permits Claims Under Title IX for Retaliation Against Employee Based On Complaints of Sex Discrimination

Posted on April 4, 2005 by

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court recently held in Jackson v. Birmingham Board of Education that Title IX’s private right of action encompasses claims of retaliation against an individual that complained about sex discrimination. Roderick Jackson (“Jackson”), a teacher and girls basketball coach in the Birmingham, Alabama Public Schools, complained to his supervisors […]

U.S. Supreme Court Makes It Easier For Employees To Bring Age Discrimination Claims

Posted on April 1, 2005 by

Consider the following scenario: due to a recent decline in sales, your company is forced to layoff several of its employees. Two of the older employees affected by the layoff, John Jones and Jane Smith, threaten to sue your company for discrimination in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”). Both employees are […]

New Department of Labor Military Leave Posting Requirement

Posted on March 24, 2005 by

On March 10,2005 the Department of Labor issued a new regulation that requires employers to post a notice describing an employee’s rights, benefits and obligations under the Uniformed Services Employment and Re-employment Rights Act or “USERRA.” USSERRA is the federal law that provides employment and re-employment rights to employees who leave their jobs, voluntarily or […]

Employer Violates NLRA by Attempting to Defeat Union Election by Promise of Improved Benefits

Posted on March 24, 2005 by

In NLRB and Graphic Communication Union v. Curwood, Inc., the employer, Curwood, was alleged to have violated the NLRA when it attempted to counter a union campaign by promising improvements in its pension benefits to employees in the voting unit. As a result of the promised increased benefits, the Union lost their election. It then […]

Employer Must Give 60 Days Notice Where Layoff is Reasonably Foreseeable

Posted on March 24, 2005 by

The WARN Act requires that an employer give 60 days notice to employees before laying them off. An exception to this rule is where the business faces “unforeseen business circumstances.” A business circumstance may be reasonably unforeseeable if it was caused by some sudden, drastic, and unexpected action, or by conditions outside of the employer’s […]