ADA Accommodations: “100% Healed” Return-To-Work Policies Ruled Illegal

If you require a disabled employee to be completely recovered before returning to work, it’s important to reconsider that policy in light of the Ninth Circuit’s recent ruling involving Amtrak (see above). In the case, a disabled ticket agent who could no longer perform her job claimed that her supervisor wouldn’t allow her to bid […]

Reassigning Disabled Employees: New Cases Highlight When You’re Obligated-And When You’re Not; A Road Map To Follow

What if an employee becomes disabled and there’s no reasonable accommodation that would enable the person to keep working in their existing position? In this relatively common situation, according to two recent Americans with Disabilities Act cases, you may have to find the worker a new job. We’ll look at these decisions and give you […]

Investigating Harassment Complaints: Sample Questions To Ask

The new EEOC guidelines on liability for harassment by supervisors emphasize the importance of thoroughly and impartially investigating harassment complaints. Your inquiry should include interviews of the victim, the alleged harasser and other witnesses who might have relevant information. The goal is to find out who was involved, what happened, and when, where and how […]

Sexual Harassment By Supervisors: New EEOC Guidelines On Employer Liability

The federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has released new guidelines interpreting and expanding on last year’s Supreme Court rulings on automatic employer liability for sexual harassment by supervisors. The new guidelines are a helpful benchmark for measuring whether your anti-harassment policies and practices make the grade.

Wage And Hour: Correcting Docking Mistakes Can Salvage Exempt Status

Even if you’ve correctly classified an employee as exempt from overtime, you can jeopardize the person’s status by improperly docking their pay or otherwise treating the worker as an hourly employee. And mistakes can be costly, requiring you to pay past and future overtime. But there is a little-known special provision in federal law that […]

Exempt Workers: How To Tell When You Have To Pay Overtime To Outside Sales Employees; New Decision Clarifies The Rules

After selling and delivering bottled water for more than three years, Peter Ramirez quit his job and sued his employer, Yosemite Water Company, for back overtime. His lawsuit, which went all the way to the California Supreme Court, highlights how difficult it can be to determine whether or not outside sales personnel qualify as exempt […]

Temps And Contingent Workers: Fallout From Microsoft Ruling Continues-New Lawsuits And Legislation May Force Employers To Pay Benefits

When a federal appeals court ruled recently that software giant Microsoft Corp. will have to pay retroactive employee benefits, including stock options, to temporary employees hired through staffing agencies, it sent a shudder through the growing number of employers who use temps in addition to regular workers. Since the court’s ruling, employees and lawmakers have […]

Responding To Harassment: United Airlines Ordered To Pay $3 Million To Muslim Employee

Although most employers are well aware that sexual harassment is a serious issue, supervisors sometimes don’t take other types of workplace harassment as seriously – even though the risks can be just as great. In one recent case, for example, United Airlines found itself on the hook for nearly $3 million in damages after a […]

News Notes: Recruiter Wins Big In Bias Case

An Orange County jury has ordered Hyundai Electronics America Inc. to pay nearly $10 million to an executive recruiter who claimed his rights were violated. Technical Resources owner Jeffrey Abraham claimed that Hyundai told him not to refer black or female candidates to the company’s Oregon semiconductor plant because Korean managers there didn’t want to […]

News Notes: Whats A Sexual Harassment Claim Worth?

A mediator charged with dividing up a $10 million settlement among 120 female sales representatives for drug maker Astra USA Inc. has come up with the novel approach of placing a dollar value on different types of sexual harassment. Fondling or requests for sex by high-level managers drew $250,000; frequent touching by low-level supervisors was […]