Law and the Workplace

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Eighth Circuit Holds That Obesity That Is Not Caused By an Underlying Physiological Condition Is Not a Covered “Impairment” Under the ADA

In Morriss v. BNSF Railway Company, the Eighth Circuit recently held that obesity that is not caused by an underlying physiological condition is not a covered “impairment” for purposes of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), even following the 2008 amendments to the ADA that broadened the definition of what is considered a protected disability. … Continue Reading

Comment Letter Requests SEC Require Public Companies To Furnish Gender Pay Ratio Data To Investors

In a February 1, 2016 comment letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), Pax Ellevate Management LLC Chair Sallie Krawcheck and Chief Executive Officer Joseph F. Keefe requested that the SEC take steps to require companies to annually disclose gender pay ratio information to investors.  In the alternative, Krawcheck and Keefe requested that the … Continue Reading

New Overtime Rules Move to Final Review Stage

On Monday the U.S. Department of Labor released its final overtime exemption rule to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB).  The OMB will now conduct its concluding review of the regulation, which, once approved, will be published in the Federal Register.  The OMB has up to 90 days to complete its review, … Continue Reading

Proposed EEO-1 Revisions Requiring Production Of Pay Data Published In Federal Register

EEOC sealOn February 1, 2016, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (“EEOC’s”) proposed revisions to the Employer Information Report (“EEO-1”) were published in the Federal Register.  Our original post on the anticipated release of this publication can be found here.  With the publication, the EEOC also released a proposed revised version of the EEO-1 report, which … Continue Reading

President Obama Expected To Announce New EEO-1 Pay Equity Reporting Requirements

EEOC sealToday, President Obama is expected to announce new pay equity reporting requirements that would require employers to disclose information concerning compensation and hours worked with their annual EEO-1 reports. According to an EEOC publication in the Federal Register, starting in 2017, employers with more than 100 employees will be required to report “W-2 earnings and … Continue Reading

Federal Court Decision Highlights Complexities of Laws Applicable to Pregnant Employees

As the laws governing the treatment of pregnant employees and new mothers continues to evolve, one recent decision from the United States District Court for the Northern District Alabama highlights the complexities that arise from the patchwork of federal laws that apply to employees during and after pregnancy. Facts The plaintiff in Hicks v. City … Continue Reading

DOJ Announces Postponement of the Release of Proposed Web Accessibility Regulations for Public Accommodations Until 2018

Man using smartphoneBusinesses awaiting guidance from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) on accessibility of online content for places of public accommodation under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) were once again disappointed when the DOJ recently announced that it is pushing back the release of its proposed regulations until fiscal year 2018. As … Continue Reading

Women in the Workplace

Employers interested in attracting and retaining women and promoting greater gender diversity in their executive ranks will be interested in the Wall Street Journal’s Special Report on Women in the Workplace.  The Report contains a number of interesting articles including: An article summarizing the results of a new study conducted by LeanIn.Org and McKinsey & … Continue Reading

Second Circuit Decision Resuscitates EEOC’s Gender Discrimination Suit Against Sterling Jewelers

This week, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit sharply limited employers’ ability to challenge the adequacy of the EEOC’s pre-suit investigations. The Court issued an opinion vacating a district court decision granting summary judgment to Sterling Jewelers Inc. (“Sterling”) on sex discrimination claims filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”). … Continue Reading

Second Circuit: FAA Mandates Stay of Claims Pending Arbitration

The Second Circuit recently held in Katz v. Cellco P’Ship d/b/a/ Verizon Wireless, Nos. 14-138, 14-291, 2015 WL 4528658 (2d Cir. July 28, 2015) that, under the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”), district courts must stay all proceedings upon a finding that the claims before the court are subject to arbitration if a stay is requested. … Continue Reading

U.S. Access Board Releases the Latest in a Series of Guidance on Accessible Design Requirements Under the Americans with Disabilities Act

Retail stores, restaurants, event venues, and other places of public accommodation seeking guidance on accessible design requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) should be aware of the latest installment of technical bulletins recently released by the U.S. Access Board, the federal agency tasked with developing accessible design criteria for individuals with disabilities. The … Continue Reading

The Americans with Disabilities Act at 25 Years: A Look Back and What’s Ahead

This Sunday marked the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), which was signed into law by President George H.W. Bush on July 26, 1990. The enactment of the ADA represented a bipartisan commitment to fight discrimination against individuals with disabilities in many aspects of everyday life, including in the workplace and in … Continue Reading

US Department of Labor Issues Administrator’s Interpretation Aimed At Limiting Independent Contractor Classification

As forecast in our June 12, 2015 blog post David Weil, Administrator of the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) has released Administrator’s Interpretation (AI) No. 2015-1, entitled “The Application of the Fair Labor Standards Act’s ‘Suffer or Permit’ Standard in the Identification of Employees Who Are Misclassified as Independent Contractors.”  The AI provides … Continue Reading

DOJ Releases Supplemental Guidance on Service Animals Under the Americans with Disabilities Act

With the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) just two weeks away, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) has released a new technical assistance document addressing frequently asked questions regarding service animals and the ADA.   This additional guidance is intended to be read in conjunction with the DOJ’s previous July 2011 technical … Continue Reading

Second Circuit Adopts The “Highly Individualized” Primary Beneficiary Test In Unpaid Intern Lawsuits

On July 2nd, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued its decisions in Glatt et al. v. Fox Searchlight Pictures, Inc. et al. and Wang et al.  v. The Hearst Corp., the two unpaid intern lawsuits heard in tandem by the court on January 30, 2015.  The court’s opinion in Glatt, … Continue Reading

EEOC Updates Pregnancy Discrimination Guidance

Last week, the EEOC announced an update to its Enforcement Guidance on Pregnancy Discrimination and Related Issues (“Enforcement Guidance”) to reflect the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Young v. UPS. As we blogged about in March, the Court in Young articulated a new standard applicable to claims brought under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (“PDA”), when … Continue Reading

Highly Anticipated Proposed Changes to FLSA White Collar Exemptions Released

Today the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) unveiled its long anticipated proposed rule that will, if enacted, raise the minimum salary threshold required to qualify for exemption from the Fair Labor Standards Act’s (“FLSA”) minimum wage and overtime requirements.  The proposal seeks to increase the current minimum salary requirement for the executive, administrative, professional, and … Continue Reading

Proposed Web Accessibility Regulations for Public Accommodations Delayed Yet Again

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has once again pushed back the anticipated issue date for proposed regulations governing accessibility of online content for places of public accommodation governed by Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act. According to the recently released Spring 2015 Unified Agenda, the proposed regulations, which had last been slated … Continue Reading

Campus SaVE Regulations Take Effect July 1, 2015: Are You Ready?

The Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (“VAWA”) amended the Clery Act by imposing new obligations on institutions of higher education under VAWA’s Campus Sexual Violence Act (“Campus SaVE”) provision. The regulations take effect on July 1, 2015 and impose a variety of obligations on colleges and universities. Each institution should examine its existing … Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Holds Failure to Accommodate Religion May Be Evidence of Intentional Discrimination

Today the U.S. Supreme Court held in favor of the EEOC in EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Store Stores, Inc. The EEOC claimed that Abercrombie violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) by refusing to hire a Muslim applicant who wears a headscarf for religious reasons.  The decision, penned by … Continue Reading

EEOC Releases Proposed Rule on Employee Wellness Plans

Yesterday, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released a long awaited proposed rule on employee wellness programs. The rule is designed to help companies structure such programs to meet their obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA prohibits medical exams that are not job related and consistent with business necessity but permits … Continue Reading

Hiring Tests in the News

A front page article in today’s Wall Street Journal highlights the growing use of pre-employment personality and psychological testing to screen job candidates.  These tests are designed to evaluate technical skills, ability to multitask, friendliness, customer service orientation, communication skills and the like.  New test designs are based on the traits of employers’ most successful … Continue Reading

U.S. Supreme Court Announces New Standard for Pregnancy Discrimination Claims

On Wednesday the U.S. Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision in Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc. (UPS), which involves a claim of pregnancy discrimination under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA). Young, a UPS driver, claimed that UPS intentionally discriminated against her by refusing to accommodate her pregnancy-related lifting restriction by transferring her to a … Continue Reading

EEOC Background Check Litigation Strategy Criticized

Readers who have been following the EEOC’s efforts to prosecute employers who conduct background checks will be interested in the Wall Street Journal’s editorial, “Hit Us Again, Harder.”  The paper praises Freeman Co. for standing up to the EEOC and defending its background check processes, pointing out the EEOC’s repeated failure to present credible evidence … Continue Reading
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