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President Obama Poised to Sign Executive Order Barring Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation

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The White House has announced that President Obama will sign an executive order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating against individuals on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, a move the White House hopes will pressure Congress into passing legislation banning employment discrimination against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community.  The Senate… Continue Reading

Release Language Hazards and How to Fix Them

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The EEOC has been challenging the legality of releases, attacking certain language that some employers consider standard.  The EEOC responds that it is merely acting consistently with its 1997 Enforcement Guidance on what it considers “non-waivable rights.”  So, what has drawn the EEOC’s adverse attention? 

Proper Tone In Performance Management – Be an Andy, Not a Barney

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To Andy Griffith Show aficionados, Andy was a true leader. Barney? Well, not so much. Why? Barney thought his job was to enforce rules, that any infraction had to be punished, that only then could appropriate respect for the rules and for authority be engendered. These sound like good things. So why did Barney seem to get it so wrong? 

President Presses Department of Labor to Redefine FLSA Exemptions for the “Modern Economy”

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Employer costs for meeting the overtime exemptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) will be increasing but not imminently. The process for that increase surely has begun. On March 13, 2014, President Obama instructed the Department of Labor (DOL) to review the “white collar” exemptions from the FLSA.  As readers know, an employer is not… Continue Reading

Employers Cautioned to Review Disclosures for FCRA Compliance

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Employers have long been under an obligation to provide employees and prospective employees with prior written notice that a credit report – a “consumer report” in the language of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) – may be obtained about them.  The FCRA specifically requires this notice to be “in a document that consists solely… Continue Reading

OFCCP Revises Disability Disclosure Rules for Federal Contractors

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The Office of Federal Contract Compliance (OFCCP) has revised the rules implementing Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act, which applies to certain federal contractors.  The revised rules, which are effective on March 24, 2014 require covered federal contractors to invite each job applicant to voluntarily disclose (“self-identify”) whether he or she has a disability as… Continue Reading

Religious Accommodation ruling Confirms Employment Law Trend Toward Candid Interactive Discussion

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A federal circuit court’s recent ruling provides more evidence of a prevalent employment law trend that has developed in the last few decades. The trend? Candid interactive communication about an employee’s rights and an employer’s responsibilities. Over the past few decades, attentive employers have seen courts favor those who communicate forthrightly concerns or issues and… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Says a Class Action Waiver in Arbitration Agreement is Enforceable

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The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that a class action waiver in an arbitration agreement is enforceable. Although not an employment case, the decision likely signals that an employee’s waiver of the right to bring a class action will be enforceable if included in an employment agreement that requires arbitration to settle any employment-related dispute…. Continue Reading

Requiring Employee to Seek Counseling May Violate ADA

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The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits a covered employer from requiring an employee to undergo a “medical examination,” unless the examination is shown to be job-related and consistent with business necessity. The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that an employer’s demand that an employee seek psychological counseling as a condition of continued… Continue Reading