Retaliation Claims Can Drive You Nuts!

As many employers sadly know, those retaliation claims can be more problematic than a discrimination or harassment claim. Federal and state discrimination laws protect employees not only from discrimination or harassment, but also from retaliation for opposing discrimination/harassment, or making a charge/complaint, testifying, assisting, or participating in any way in a discrimination proceeding, such as…

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Jury Awards $450,000 for Employer’s Termination of Employee After Receiving Notice About Anxiety Disorder

On March 31, 2022, a Kentucky jury unanimously awarded $450,000 to an employee, who was terminated following two panic attacks the employee suffered at work. The jury concluded the employee’s anxiety disorder was a disability and that the employee suffered an adverse action because of his disability. Brief Background In Berling v. Gravity Diagnostics, LLC,…

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Timing Matters – Failure to Respond and Act Promptly Can Create Liability

A recent case emphasizes the importance of timing – both in terms of reacting to reports of employee misconduct and in imposing discipline (particularly termination). As the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit recently found, terminating an employee, based on conduct that occurred months earlier, shortly after they complain of discrimination certainly seems…

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Employers Paid $439M to Resolve EEOC Discrimination Claims in 2020

Employers paid more than $439 million to resolve U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) discrimination allegations. That number includes both private sector and state and local government workplaces during the agency’s 2020 fiscal year, according to a Feb. 26 statement. Retaliation claims constituted more than half of all charges filed with the agency last year, while disability-related claims and…

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Check Your Call-In Policies

A recent Third Circuit Court of Appeal decision provides great guidance on what a good call-in policy can look like. In this case the employer, Penn State Health, utilized a call-in policy that required employees to make twocalls when they wanted to request FMLA leave: First, an employee had to call to a designated “call-off” line,…

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Gender Stereotypes Undermine Sexual Harassment Investigations, Study Says

Women who do not conform to societal stereotypes of femininity may experience bias when seeking legal protections against sexual harassment, according to a study published Jan. 14 in the American Psychological Association’s Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. In recognizing the barriers to legal rights, it’s crucial to understand misperceptions about victims of sexual harassment, according to the…

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Senate Confirms 3 Commissioners, Maintaining EEOC’s Right-Leaning Quorum

The U.S. Senate this week confirmed the nominations by Republicans of three commissioners for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Keith E. Sonderling, deputy administrator of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division, was confirmed Sept. 22 with a term that expires July 1, 2024 with a vote of 52-41. Sonderling was nominated in July 2019,…

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