Employment Law

Need employment law advice? Your employee’s hungry attorney knows the latest on employment at will, reasonable accommodations, and more.

Minimize employer liability, optimize labor relations, bullet-proof your employee handbook and update your knowledge of ADA guidelines with our employment law advice.

It’s hard to create binding and en­­forceable arbitration agreements in California. Some courts considering California arbitration agreements have held that actions brought by em­­ployees under the California Private Attor­­ney General Act of 2004 (PAGA) can’t be blocked by arbitration agreements.

Public employees don’t lose their rights to free speech just because they work for a government agency. They retain the right to speak out on matters of public importance, and they can’t be punished for exercising that right. That’s why, if you work for the gov­­ern­ment, you should warn super­visors against any action that smacks of punishing employees for speaking out.

Texas employers have long been frustrated with the expense of defending against frivolous claims. Even when employers win a lawsuit, litigation can cost thousands in legal fees and lost productivity. Now at least some help is on the way. The Texas Legislature has passed the much-hyped “Loser Pays Law.”

Some disabled employees never tell employers about their con­­ditions—even if their disability could affect performance. And of course you know you shouldn’t treat employees as disabled unless they claim a disability. But what if you fire someone for poor performance?

A horrific accident that killed a worker in March 2011 has led to $186,300 in fines for Refuse Recycling, based in Marietta. Inspectors from OSHA were called to the plant after an employee was found dead inside a rotating drum that screens recyclables from other refuse.

Businesses come and go, especially during tough economic times. But sometimes companies just change names and corporate status, while essentially remaining the same entity. That doesn’t mean their legal obligations just disappear.
When disgruntled applicants or former employees file frivolous lawsuits, they often act as their own lawyers in court. So-called pro se litigants can’t go far unless the court agrees to waive their court fees. To stop meritless cases from clogging up appeals dockets, more and more federal judges are refusing to waive court fees.
Q. A few employees have complained that we use their Social Security numbers (SSNs) as their ID numbers. They’re concerned about identity theft. Is it legal to use Social Security numbers for ID purposes?

While legal problems can crop up during an employee’s tenure, the two events that carry the most legal risk for employers are the hiring and the departure of an employee. Hiring discrimination lawsuits are particularly dangerous. To stay out of court, managers should build their hiring process around these principles:

While in your employ, an employee has an absolute duty to act in your best interests, and not to act in the interests of anyone else in a way that is contrary to yours. The "duty of loyalty" prohibits employees from taking certain competitive actions while still working for you. Here's how to limit the damage from an employee-turned-competitor: