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Obesity as a Disability Under the ADA

Posted on July 8, 2014 by

Recent court actions continue to support a claim that obesity is a covered disability. America’s Car-Mart (Car-Mart) reached a mutual agreement to settle a claim brought by a former employee alleging that Car-Mart discharged him from his General Manager position because of his severe obesity and because his employer regarded him as being substantially limited […]

Contracted Employees: Will You Become a New Employer?

Posted on July 7, 2014 by

Many companies use contracted employees to avoid the cost of human resources services and benefits. Under these arrangements, a company will hire another company to provide the employees that will do all or a portion of the production work for the business. This has become a popular way to manage human resources costs and benefits. […]

Most Recent Final ACA Rules Address 90-Day Waiting Period: Getting Your “Orientation”

Posted on July 7, 2014 by

Recently, the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Treasury, published final rules concerning the so-called “orientation” periods, which implicate the Affordable Care Act’s ban on waiting periods exceeding 90 days. The final rules go into effect on August 25, 2014, and are applicable for plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2015. […]

When Was the Last Time You Dusted Off Your Non-Solicitation and Distribution Policy?

Posted on June 18, 2014 by

Many employers, in an effort to improve workplace productivity, efficiency and safety, implement so-called “Solicitation and Distribution of Materials” policies. These policies generally prohibit non-work-related communications by employees during work time, as well as distribution of non-work-related materials in work areas [or distribution in non-work areas by employees during work time]. These policies may also […]

Are Employment Application Questions About Convictions and Arrests Taboo?

Posted on June 16, 2014 by

Recently, several businesses have asked me to carefully scrutinize their employment application forms for compliance with state and federal law. Interestingly, one question that consistently arises is whether employers in Wisconsin are permitted to ask questions about convictions and arrests within employment application forms. I have found that there is a great deal of confusion […]

Stop Talking About Your Compensation – Not

Posted on June 10, 2014 by

Many companies have a policy that prohibits employees from talking about their salary or benefits in order to avoid morale issues in the workplace. It is sometimes hard to enforce a policy like this, but companies believe it is important to make it clear that a discussion of salary that an employee receives is not […]

Is Six Months Enough?

Posted on June 6, 2014 by

A recent decision from the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals has addressed the question whether a six-month leave of absence for a disabled employee is sufficient to satisfy the reasonable accommodation requirement. The Court of Appeals found that Kansas State University satisfied the reasonable accommodation requirements under the Rehabilitation Act when terminating an assistant professor […]

Watch Out – Protections Against Swearing at Boss

Posted on June 4, 2014 by

The National Labor Relations Board continues to reach out to provide protection to employees. In a recent decision, the Board concluded that an outburst in the workplace by an employee was considered protected speech, because the employee did not explicitly threaten violence and did not act in a violent fashion. The employee did, in a […]

Mixed Motive For Discrimination Decision – Be Careful

Posted on June 3, 2014 by

A recent Wisconsin Court of Appeals decision highlighted the importance of employers being very careful when making employment decisions to ensure that part of the rationale for a decision is not discriminatory in nature. In this decision, Milwaukee County terminated a manager for violation of County policies on use of technology. During the discussion with […]

Off-Duty Conduct – Taking Adverse Employment Action

Posted on May 29, 2014 by

There is a lot of controversy today about the right of an employer to take adverse employment action (i.e. firing someone) for off-duty conduct. Employers have more access to things happening outside the workplace and are very concerned about their overall reputation in the community. Unfortunately, there are various laws that protect an employee from […]