Publications

Illinois Bar Journal
Articles on Employment Law

Can Employers Prevent Former Workers from Hiring Current Employees? By David F. Rolewick January 2006 Article, Page 34 For years, most Illinois courts have held that an employer can't stop departed employees from recruiting the employer's current workers. But that might be changing.
Corporate officers not personally liable for employee vacation, severance pay By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2005 Lawpulse, Page 614 The Illinois Supreme Court ruled that officers and directors aren't liable under the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act for employees' unpaid vacation time and severance pay.
Tax Issues in Employment Discrimination Settlements By Ralph A. Morris and Heather R.M. Becker December 2005 Article, Page 638 Every lawyer who negotiates an employment discrimination settlement should understand the implications of these tax issues.
TaxNet: Online tax filing for employers By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2005 Lawpulse, Page 558 Now Illinois employers can pay state taxes and file documents online.
Wages and sin By Helen W. Gunnarsson June 2005 Lawpulse, Page 274 Can an employee who considers homosexuality a sin openly oppose his employer's workplace diversity effort? What are the limits of religious practice and expression in the workplace?
Allowing Disparate Impact Claims Under the ADEA By Lori D. Ecker and Joseph M. Gagliardo April 2005 Article, Page 198 Will the U.S. Supreme Court allow older employees to prove age discrimination based on employers' facially neutral practices?
Subcontractors beware By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2005 Lawpulse, Page 110 Many businesses struggle with how to classify the people who work for them – are they employees or independent contractors? This case won't make it easier.
Raising an Affirmative Defense to Constructive-Discharge in Hostile-Work-Environment Cases By Athena Papachronis Herman February 2005 Article, Page 84 The Supreme Court recently established when an employer can assert an affirmative defense to a claim of supervisor–created hostile work environment that leads to constructive discharge.
Volunteer firefighters shielded from wrongful termination of employment and offered civil relief for employer violations PA 093-1027 January 2005 Illinois Law Update, Page 14 The Volunteer Firefighter Job Protection Act, which applies to municipalities with populations of 3,500 or less, stipulates when volunteer firefighters may not be discharged from their employment, as well as the appropriateness of civil actions in response to wrongful termination. 
When Johnny and Jenny come marching home By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2005 Lawpulse, Page 8 Their jobs had better be awaitin' and the accompanying job rights preserved, or their employers may be guilty of violating federal law.
When Are Supervisors Personally Liable for Employment Law Violations? By Jane M. McFetridge and Grace Hwang Lee December 2004 Article, Page 628 Can employees recover from a misbehaving supervisor in addition to the company? Sometimes yes, sometimes no.
Illinois’ new WARN law By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2004 Lawpulse, Page 562 There's already a federal law requiring employers to notify workers about layoffs and closing; effective January 1, there'll be a state law to go with it.
Helping Employers Respond to Social Security Number “No-Match” Letters By Alisa B. Arnoff August 2004 Article, Page 429 Here's how lawyers can help employer clients protect themselves from actions by the feds and employees.
All civil rights claims, whether based on federal or state law, shall be prosecuted in an administrative forum, as required by the Illinois Human Rights Act July 2004 Illinois Law Update, Page 340 On April 12, 2004, the Fifth District Appellate Court held that the Circuit Court of St. Clair County did not have subject matter jurisdiction over an employee's Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) claim.
Background Checks Required for Euthanasia Technicians P.A. 093-0626 May 2004 Illinois Law Update, Page 242 Effective immediately, each applicant for certification as a euthanasia technician must have his or her fingerprints submitted to the Department of State Police in an electronic format that complies with the form.
Undocumented Workers’ Remedies for Employment-Law Violations in Illinois By Michael K. Fridkin May 2004 Article, Page 256 Despite a Supreme Court decision restricting their remedies under the NLRA, undocumented workers can still get relief under other employment laws, this author opines.
VESSA: unpaid leave for domestic violence victims By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2004 Lawpulse, Page 118 Find out about this newly effective law that, like the Family and Medical Leave Act, grants unpaid leave to covered workers.
Constructive discharge can lead to strict Title VII liability for employers By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2004 Lawpulse, Page 62 The seventh circuit ruled recently that constructive discharge can be a "tangible employment action" in a Title VII suit, in which case employers may not invoke affirmative defenses. And the employer in this case was an Illinois circuit court.
Illinois OKs speaking in (native) tongues in the workplace By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2004 Lawpulse, Page 10 Habla Espanol in the workplace? You can now with impunity, as long as it's your native language and you're talking about non-work-related matters.
New law makes it easier to investigate workplace misconduct By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2004 Lawpulse, Page 10 Employers are no longer required to get an alleged wrongdoer's consent to hire an outside firm to conduct an investigation of alleged misconduct on the job.
Employees Entitled to Take Leave Due to Domestic or Sexual Violence P.A. 93-0591 December 2003 Illinois Law Update, Page 600 An employee who is a victim of domestic or sexual violence, or has a family or household member who is a victim, may take 12 weeks per year of unpaid leave from work to address domestic or sexual violence issues, pursuant to the Victims' Economic Security and Safety Act.
Legislature Protects Whistleblowers Against Retaliation and Provides for Recovery of Damages P.A. 93-0544 November 2003 Illinois Law Update, Page 550 Employers (excluding governmental entities) are now prohibited from making, adopting or enforcing any rule, regulation or policy that prevents an employee from disclosing information to a government or law enforcement agency if that employee reasonably believes the information discloses a violation of a state or federal law.
Overtime Overview: A Look at the Proposed Overtime Rules By Joseph E. Gumina and Michael J. Pulcanio October 2003 Article, Page 521 A thumbnail sketch of the Department of Labor proposal, with a look at how the proposed regulations might affect lawyer-employers.
Small firms, big cases By Helen W. Gunnarsson October 2003 Lawpulse, Page 486 How three lawyers from small-practice settings and different parts of Illinois teamed up to bring a high-stakes whistleblower lawsuit.
State Lawsuit Immunity Act opens Illinois to lawsuits from state employees By Helen W. Gunnarsson October 2003 Lawpulse, Page 486 The new law, which allows state employees to bring race, age, and other discrimination suits, has claimants' lawyers cheering.
Coming Home: Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Job Reinstatement Rights By Joanna G. DuPriest August 2003 Article, Page 407 A guide to state and federal job-reinstatement laws.
Hospital Employment of Physicians After Berlin and Carter-Shields By Saul J. Morse and Robert John Kane August 2003 Article, Page 402 Recent developments in Illinois law governing employment of physicians by hospitals and hospital affiliates.
Workin’ overtime By Helen W. Gunnarsson August 2003 Lawpulse, Page 374 Proposed federal regs would redefine exemptions from overtime laws, particularly for managerial employees.
Bankrupt employees; no firing after filing? By Helen W. Gunnarsson July 2003 Lawpulse, Page 326 Employers may not "discriminat[e] or retaliat[e] against" employees who have filed for bankruptcy. But what does that mean?
Retaliatory discharge protection extends to employees testifying in other employees’ workers’ compensation actions; scope of employment approach proper test for hearsay June 2003 Illinois Law Update, Page 280 On March 25, 2003, the Appellate Court of Illinois, First District, reversed and remanded the order of the circuit court of Cook County granting summary judgment for the defendant corporation.