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Mindy Chapman, Esq., Mindy Chapman & Associates

Since when is a manager’s mere “concern” over a disabled employee’s ability to do the job enough justification to terminate? Try never. In the dictionary, “concern” is synonymous with “worry” and “fear.” So, a manager who is wringing his hands with potential concerns about an ADA-protected employee’s performance may soon have bigger things to be concerned with … like a federal lawsuit.

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A court mandated the former CEO of a Nevada company and others to restore over $4.775 million, including interest, to two pension plans.

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How should a company welcome back a member of the military and say “thank you”…? Within a few hours of returning from military training to his job at Target Corp., an employee was demoted. Then, after he complained that the demotion violated the Uniform Service Employment and Reemployment Act (USERRA), Target fired him. He was willing to take a bullet for our country, so how did he end up becoming a target in the workplace?…

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Do you have to tell your customers you are sexual harassers? Yup, you might have to. Shocking, right? In a startling court order, a judge required a company to inform their customers about their sexual harassment verdict against them for over $1 million

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“Tr*mp.” “F*ck.” “Sl*t.” “B*tch.” “B*be.” That was the everyday vocabulary for one of the bosses at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama. Sounds like a real loser, right? Not in this case. The official loser was the employee who failed to report the manager’s conduct promtly and, therefore, lost her case in court …

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Question: Open mouth. Insert foot. Taste a lawsuit? The district manager at the Foot Locker did. In a surprising court ruling, a judge decided that only “one comment” made by the district manager about the store manager’s age was enough to hand him his walking papers — into court that is.

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Question: How would you like to work for this guy? ’Joe’ allegedly simulated acts of masturbation and went around sticking his finger in employees’ ears. He also engaged in unwanted touching, sexual jokes and offensive remarks about employees’ bodies. He went so far as to share intimate details about sex with his wife. One employee claims he kissed her on the lips and offered her a promotion in exchange for sex. Those employee, of course, sued for sexual harassment. Seems like a slam dunk, right? Not so …

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Why does testing bring about that sledgehammer-in-the-stomach feeling? Maybe because, as students, we never knew quite what to expect. Now, the same is true when it comes to a recent trend in employment-law cases: applicants and employees making phone calls to secretly test whether your organization is discriminating. While the U.S. Supreme Court has long acknowledged the importance and legality of such testers in civil-rights claims, two new court cases offer critical lessons for employers …

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