Employment Law

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Sure it’s frustrating when an employee gripes about general workplace problems. Don’t let that frustration spill over into retaliation. If the worker is making a good-faith complaint about alleged discrimination or harassment, he’s protected from retaliation.
Does your organization have more than $1 million in federal contracts? If so, you may have to change any arbitration agreements you have in place covering certain claims.
It’s been a busy summer for the beleaguered lawyers at the U.S. Department of Labor. On Aug. 19, the DOL filed briefs in three separate cases filed against it in federal courts, covering everything from benefits advice to safety records to resisting unionization.

A federal court in Texas on June 27 ruled that the Department of Labor’s controversial “persuader rule” could not go into effect July 1. An injunction issued by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas means employers have at least a temporary reprieve from having to disclose who advises them on ways to discourage union organizing.

In some situations, you may be able to get a court to issue a “no more lawsuits” order. It’s not easy, though.
If you use an arbitration clause to cut down on expensive litigation, make sure your attorneys know as soon as an employee sues. Otherwise, you may end up waiving your right to compel arbitration.
When employers consider the possibility that an employee may sue under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (an investor protection law sometimes called SOX), they naturally think in terms of financial damages. But courts are now saying that SOX allows wronged employees to collect emotional distress damages, too.
Public employees don’t lose their First Amendment free speech rights when they take a government job. Their employer can’t punish them for speaking out on matters of public importance.

OSHA inspectors staging a spot inspection at K-T Galvanizing Co. in the Dallas-Fort Worth-area town of Venus found 13 serious violations of workplace safety and health regulations.

The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act decision based on a worker-friendly interpretation of the terms “sale of assets” and “going concern.” The decision makes it easier for workers to challenge lack of a WARN notice when their employer claims to have sold company assets to another firm.

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