Tag: Foulston Siefkin

Same-Sex Marriages Legally Recognized: How Do Healthcare Benefits Change?

With the DOMA ban on same-sex marriage being ruled unconstitutional, what does this mean for healthcare benefits—will a same-sex marriage be recognized in the same way as other marriages, thus allowing the same-sex partner to receive spousal healthcare benefits paid for at the pre-tax rate? This is just one of the many questions employers are […]

OSHA Says Employers Must Ban Texting while Driving

by Boyd Byers Recently, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced an initiative to combat work-related distracted driving. OSHA’s first point of focus is texting while driving. Audio Conference: Monitoring Employee E-Mail, Texting and Facebook: What’s Off Limits Safety concerns prompt new laws Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of worker fatalities, and […]

Supreme Court Affirms Arbitration for Union Member Discrimination Claims

A sharply divided U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled that provisions of a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that clearly and unmistakably require union members to arbitrate age discrimination claims are enforceable. While the decision is unlikely to affect many employers, the ruling is the latest in a series of Supreme Court decisions finding arbitration to be […]

Employee Free Choice Act: What Employers Should Do Now

by Donald D. Berner and Forrest T. Rhodes The election of Barack Obama as the next president, coupled with the Democratic Party’s increased majority in both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, is certain to bring changes. The Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), which President-elect Obama and Democratic congressional leaders vow to pass in […]

Economy, Political Changes Could Create Perfect Storm for Employment Lawsuits

(Updated April 2009) by Boyd Byers Writer Sebastian Junger coined the phrase “perfect storm” to describe the simultaneous occurrence of different weather phenomena that combine to create a powerful nor’easter (a storm blowing from the northeast). Is a confluence of cultural, economic, and political events whipping up a perfect storm for employment law claims? Many […]

Where Is the Line on Retaliation after Supreme Court Rulings?

In 2006, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion expanding the range of employer conduct that employees could use to support a retaliation claim. But as with anything new, questions immediately arose. Is a dirty look now considered retaliatory? An off-putting e-mail? What about a humiliating public censure? This uncertainty left employers understandably concerned. But […]

What Motivates an Employee’s Lawyer?

by Jeff DeGraffenreid Recently, I met a plaintiff’s lawyer during a particularly expansive mediation. He was on the opposing side, and after we were through, I had the chance to sit down with him over a beer and pick his brain. I’d gone in with the notion that he was “in it for the money.” […]

Playing at Work and Working at Play

by Boyd Byers Every office has at least one. The guy who stockpiles Star Wars action figures in his cubicle. Or the gal with the Hello Kitty screen saver who jams to the same music as her teenage daughter. Twenty years ago, they would have been considered immature and unprofessional. Today, they’re more likely to […]