Employment Law

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When James Telb was sheriff of Lucas County, he faced federal charges relating to an inmate’s death in the county jail. He was acquitted in December 2010, but claims the process left him saddled with $200,000 in legal fees. Now he is suing the county to recover the money.

In April, the Cali­­for­­nia Supreme Court finally issued its opinion in Brinker v. Superior Court. In a major victory for California employers, the court issued clear rules on how and when employee meal and rest periods must be provided.
In a case that tested the limits of an employer’s attendance policy, a nurse who had requested an accommodation that would have excused her from her employer’s five un­­planned absences limit has lost her appeal and won’t have her case reinstated. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the dismissal of the nurse’s lawsuit.
A state Court of Appeals has ruled that Cal/OSHA does not have to produce 2,200 files covering several years in a lawsuit over enforcement of California’s regulations designed to safeguard workers from work-related heat illness.
Summertime is when employers can capitalize on an influx of eager school-age workers looking for seasonal jobs. Summer jobs can be great for both young workers and employers, but you should be mindful of federal and state child labor laws.

Earlier this year, the EEOC published Veterans and the Ameri­­cans with Disabilities Act (ADA): A Guide for Employers. In the guide, the EEOC asks the following question: May a private employer give preference in hiring to a veteran with a disability over other applicants?

Finally! A court has figured it out. When disabled employees take leave under the ADA, it’s not always an open-ended ticket to calling in absent. If regular attendance is an essential element of the job, then calling in absent is not a “reasonable” accommodation …

The ADA requires employers to reasonably accommodate applicants or employees with mental or physical disabilities who are qualified to perform the job’s essential functions with or without a reasonable accommodation. Still, it’s a tricky issue. Five questions and answers from recent court cases and EEOC guidance:

The federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) doesn’t grant employers any legal recourse if an employee misuses information obtained from company computers, according to a recent federal court ruling.
The DOl  and IRS continue to aggressively enforce laws against misclassifying employees as independent contractors. But a major shift has taken hold in the past two years, with state legislatures and regulators actively taking a greater role in cracking down on companies that classify workers as contractors without properly documenting or structuring their relationships with those individuals.