Employment Law

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Some schoolyard bullies grow into workplace bullies. In most cases, their behavior won’t lead to a lawsuit. But that’s not always the case.
The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has sent to arbitration a labor/management dispute over union representation following several lawsuits that accused employers of acting in bad faith by refusing to accept the union as em­­ployees’ bargaining representative.
The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that it’s not retaliation for a prospective employer to refuse to hire someone who sued another employer for wage-and-hour violations under the FLSA. Even so, tread carefully in this area, because the rules could change.
The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has sent to arbitration a labor/management dispute over union representation following several lawsuits that accused employers of acting in bad faith by refusing to accept the union as em­­ployees’ bargaining representative.

Soldiers who take military leave for active service or training are generally entitled to return to their jobs when they finish their military service. They even have protection from being terminated without cause if they served long enough. But USERRA does not protect employees who fail to follow existing company rules when they return or try to return.

With more veterans returning from active duty service in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, employers are facing more reemployment claims. Under USERRA, service members are entitled to reinstatement as if they never left for deployment. That right includes seniority and allowance for promotions that would have occurred if they had not been deployed.

Sometimes, employers have to stand their ground and refuse to try an un­­workable accommodation.
The Older Workers Benefit Protection Act forbids discrimination by employers based on age when providing employee benefits, like severance. The OWBPA also ensures that no employee is coerced or pressured into signing legal waivers of rights under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA).

Conducting job interviews is one of the most legally dangerous tasks performed by managers. One misguided question could cause an applicant to think he or she was re­­­­jected due to one of the federally pr­o­­tected categories. Take this hiring quiz to see if you know which questions are legal and which are not:  

Reductions-in-force have become standard employer strategies for trimming workforces in tough times. Employers must analyze such layoffs to avoid discrimination lawsuits based on age, sex, and race, as well as comply with the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN).
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