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Wessels Sherman Labor and Employment Law Blog

Extended Medical Leaves and the ADA: Court Provides Much-Needed, Long-Awaited Clarity

"The ADA is an antidiscrimination statute, not a medical-leave entitlement." These are the words employers have been waiting more than 25 years to hear, since the date the ADA first became effective, and even more so after the passage of the Family Medical Leave Act in 1993. They address an issue that has vexed employers since day one; that is, whether the duty to accommodate requires an employer to provide an extended medical leave after an employee has exhausted all of the medical leave available to him under the FMLA. The EEOC has vigorously contended that it does, particularly where the proposed leave is of a definite, time limited duration; requested in advance; and, likely to enable the employee to perform the essential functions of his job upon his return. On September 20, 2017, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals flatly rejected the EEOC's contention.

The Holidays Are A'Comin

Over the past few years, the author has written a "Holiday Article" to provide some guidance/legal insight into the somewhat complicated "Business Holiday Party". I have received numerous suggestions and/or recommendations (and some good natured kidding), but I am not detoured! It is never too early to begin planning for the Holiday Season of Calendar 2017!

New Exemptions to the ACA's Contraception Mandate & Final Versions of the 2017 Forms 1094-C and 1095-C

On October 6, 2017, the Trump administration issued new rules exempting both religious and non-religious employers that object to the ACA's contraceptive mandate, which requires most employers to provide contraceptive services at no out-of-pocket cost, based on sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions. Predictably, multiple organizations and attorneys general announced that they will challenge and/or sue the Trump administration over the new rules (and several already have); however, until the outcome of those challenges and lawsuits are decided, the new rules govern.

Illinois Privacy Issues

A Chicago law firm, Edelson P.C., that bills itself as the "Plaintiff Class Action Powerhouse" has launched three (3) separate class action lawsuits in the Cook County court system for what is alleged as violations of the Illinois Biometric Privacy Act (740 ILCS 14/1 et seq.).

Slash All Unnecessary Promises In Your Employee Handbook!

The Golden Rule about Promises in an Employee Handbook...When you consider what to promise your employees, hold back on any and all promises unless you really feel a certain promise is absolutely essential and you are 100% certain you can always deliver on the promise. If you can't, delete it from your Employee Handbook unless it is required by law.

Harvey and Irma - Employer's Dilemma

The effects of Harvey and Irma will have longstanding impact on the expenditure of federal resources and the everyday life of Texas and Florida citizens. They are also a reminder to all businesses of the impact of natural events and the importance of disaster recovery planning. A business' first concern should always be the safety and protection of its employees and its physical property. However, a natural disaster can destroy a business' information and assets that are critical to its success and continuity. There are key steps to prepare and respond to a natural disaster and to minimize the disruption. Here are a few steps to conduct for an effective disaster recovery plan:

Common Risky Employer Mistakes in a Workplace Investigation

The need for workplace investigations usually arises suddenly and without warning. Company management receives a complaint (most commonly a sex harassment complaint or a complaint of discrimination) and often does not know how to proceed.

State of Unions

With the passage of another Labor Day, which was surprisingly quiet in regard to demonstrations and parades supporting organized labor, it is time to take a "quick look" across the landscape to see what the current status of organized labor truly is.

Great News For Businesses: Federal Judge Strikes Down Department Of Labor Overtime Rule!

A Federal Judge invalidated the $47,476 salary threshold that the U.S. DOL attempted to implement last year. A Texas Judge who last year temporarily enjoined the D.O.L. from implementing its highly controversial overtime regulations in December, as planned, has issued a final decision declaring them invalid and unenforceable. District Court Judge Amos L. Mazzant, III ruled that the Obama D.O.L. exceeded its authority when it more than doubled the minimum salary level for white collar overtime exemptions. The ruling impacts millions of employees and their employers.

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