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The HR Specialist: Ohio Employment Law

All employers with a unionized work force, take note: Just because someone has an age discrimination claim awaiting resolution under your collective bargaining agreement’s grievance procedures doesn’t mean the employee can’t prepare to file a lawsuit. In fact, the employee may have no choice but to go forward …

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In an interesting Supreme Court of Ohio case, the high court has ruled that a lawsuit by an employer against an employee who filed an employment discrimination lawsuit against it is not automatically retaliation. The court’s decision overturned a long-held view of the Ohio Civil Rights Commission …

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Barbara Sykes said it was “political back and forth” that led her to resign her post as appointed head of Ohio’s Civil Rights Commission (CRC) just before her confirmation hearing. Sykes locked horns with Gov. Ted Strickland over the commission’s proposal to expand Ohio’s maternity leave requirements …

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Christina Johnson, a police officer for Olmsted Township who was fired for crawling into a stranger’s car while highly intoxicated and then passing out, will have the chance to convince a jury that she suffered discrimination. Johnson was off duty during the episode, but was wearing her uniform sweater …

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Ohio is one of 29 states that have signed memoranda of understanding with the IRS to share enforcement information on employment tax collection matters. The move is part of the IRS’ Questionable Employment Tax Practices (QETP) initiative …

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In the fall of 2007, the Ohio Civil Rights Commission’s proposed revisions to the rules governing pregnancy discrimination became a hot political topic. Due to some unusual political wrangling, the future of the proposed rule revision is very much in question …

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No doubt about it, the workers’ compensation system is a headache for employers. It’s full of frustrations and surprises. Consider, for example, the fairly common scenario of a retired employee receiving workers’ comp payments. Seems like retiring would end workers’ compensation payments, right? Not necessarily, as the following case illustrates …

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Roger Lee Dillon, an employee of armored car company AT Systems International, allegedly coordinated a complicated heist from a company garage in Liberty late last year. Retail receipts from Thanksgiving weekend sales were the targets …

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Can an Ohio city force its employees to live within the city limits? Right now, that depends on the city. The 3rd District Court of Appeals recently ruled that towns in its jurisdiction can require employees to live where they work, overturning a 2006 state law that barred towns from imposing residency requirements …

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Federal employees who report alleged wrongdoing by the agencies they work for are entitled to special protections for their whistle-blowing actions. But they also have obligations—if they believe they have suffered retaliation, they must bring an administrative claim before the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board before filing a lawsuit in federal court …

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If, like many employers, you would rather avoid litigation by relying instead on arbitration to settle workplace disputes, you probably know that employees still may take their claims to the EEOC. That’s because the agency claims an interest in knowing whether employers are following the nation’s anti-discrimination laws. But it’s perfectly legal to force an employee into arbitration over those same claims …

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It may be a busy, hectic and crazy workplace, but that doesn’t excuse supervisors and managers from providing updated and accurate job descriptions and documenting job performances. Workplaces that neglect those essential duties face huge lawsuit risks …

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Although there is no blanket rule against transferring someone who has been involved in a romantic relationship with a co-worker, make sure the transfer benefits the transferred party and can’t be viewed as punishment. Otherwise, the transferred employee may claim retaliation …

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A woman who worked in DaimlerChrysler’s Toledo machining plant lost her sexual harassment case against the company partly because of a sound employment agreement—and partly because the company responded appropriately to her complaint …

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Cincinnati-based Cintas Corp. was hit with another $196,000 in fines for safety violations at its Mobile, AL, location, bringing its total OSHA fines to more than $3 million in just three months …

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A court has awarded $4.4 million to a Seattle woman who worked at a Goodyear store and endured harassment—and eventual retaliation—because she is gay …

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The Ohio Supreme Court has narrowed the scope of the public-policy wrongful discharge claim in Ohio. In Leininger v. Pioneer Nat’l Latex, the Ohio Supreme Court said employees couldn’t claim wrongful discharge after being fired for speaking out on alleged age discrimination. Here’s what the decision means …

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The United Steelworkers union filed a complaint against Meridian Automotive Systems Inc., claiming the company violated the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act when it permanently laid off workers at its Jackson, OH, plant in August of 2007 …

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AK Steel settled a lawsuit with a group of retirees from its Middletown Works by transferring their health care coverage to a voluntary employees’ beneficiary association (VEBA) trust. The 4,600 retirees sued in 2006 after the company moved to cut retiree health care costs to improve its competitiveness …

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The city of Akron will have to sell bonds to cover a $985,000 settlement with two former workers in the permits and plans division. The employees sued after the city destroyed a cache of the women’s time sheets showing comp time owed for extra hours they worked …

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