Section Newsletter Articles on Employment Law

Putting employers between a rock and a hard place with respect to verifying employment eligibility By Cindy G. Buys International and Immigration Law, December 2007 Earlier this year, the Illinois legislature passed and Governor Blagojevich signed into law H.B. 1744, which puts employers in an even more difficult position with respect to verifying their employees’ eligibility to work. H.B. 1744 amends the Illinois Right to Privacy in the Workplace Act to prohibit employers “from enrolling in any Employment Eligibility Verification System, including the Basic Pilot Program, 8 U.S.C. 1324a, . . . until the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) databases are able to make a determination on 99 percent of the tentative nonconfirmation notices issued to employers within three days, unless otherwise required by federal law.”
Anti-Pretexting Statute By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, November 2007 Hewlett-Packard’s Chairman, Patricia Dunn, was allegedly upset about leaks to the media about the company’s long term strategic plans. Hewlett-Packard retained an outside firm to gain access to its directors’ phone records, believing that one or more directors were the source of the leak.
Does a manager have to express happiness that a subordinate is pregnant? By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, August 2007 Probably not. However, failure to do so was one issue considered significant in a pregnancy discrimination case. Asmo v. Keane, Inc., 471 F.3d 588 (6th Cir. 2006).
EEOC issues guidance on workers with caregiving responsibilities By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, August 2007 In May 2007, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued guidance on workers with caregiving responsibilities.
Accommodating the religious needs of employees By Mel Muskovitz Business Advice and Financial Planning, June 2007 Over the past several years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has received an increase in the number of charges alleging religious discrimination.
The complex world of calculating overtime By Jim McGrath Corporate Law Departments, June 2007 In January of this year, the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Dept. of Labor announced a settlement with a private employer that is the largest settlement in their history.
Failure to insure contraceptives was not sex discrimination By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, June 2007 Union Pacific Railroad provided health care benefits to its employees who were covered by collective bargaining agreements. While the health plans provided benefits for services such as routine physical exams, they excluded coverage for a number of things.
Mass flu outbreak: Employment implications By Michael R. Lied Labor and Employment Law, June 2007 Not “if” but “when.” According to the Director of the Centers for Disease Control (“CDC”), a pandemic, likely an influenza break- out, is inevitable. Some CDC recommendations have employment law implications. For example, if employees become ill, an obvious issue may be the need to satisfy Family and Medical Leave Act obligations.
Rights of veterans and duties of employers under federal and Illinois law By Joshua M. Grenard Corporate Law Departments, June 2007 As the Global War on Terror continues in both Iraq and Afghanistan, civilian-soldiers of the Reserve and National Guard are being deployed on a historic scale with the effects being felt not only by the soldiers themselves, but also family members and employers.
Sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace By James E. Snyder and Hon. Reva S. Bauch Labor and Employment Law, June 2007 Imagine being called into your employer’s boardroom and being told: “You’re a great employee, but you’re gay,’re fired!” Federal law does not prohibit this kind of conduct by the employer. And in 33 states it is not an unlawful employment practice.
Supreme Court finds patient privacy violation outside scope of employment By Hon. Kimberly L. Dahlen Civil Practice and Procedure, June 2007 The issue in Bagent v. Blessing Care Corp., was whether Illini Community Hospital could be held vicariously liable under a theory of respondeat superior for a phlebotomist’s disclosure of a patient’s confidential medical information to a third party at a tavern while off duty.
Recent cases relating to employment law By John H. Brechin Local Government Law, May 2007 Two cases involving employment law issues were recently decided. In Kelley v. Sheriffs Merritt Commission, the Second District Appellate Court considered the issue of the permissible use of polygraph examinations in investigation and whether the failure of an officer to submit to such an examination is cause for discipline.
Employers face liability for employee multitasking on the road By Sherrie Travis Corporate Law Departments, March 2007 A recent out-of-court settlement reinforces the need for employers to warn employees about the danger of electronic multitasking on the road.
Employer’s obligations under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act By John N. Maher Labor and Employment Law, March 2007   Some of the central issues that you, as an employer, may face when your employees are called to active duty are addressed in this article.
The need to accommodate workplace proselytization? By Keri A. Legg Labor and Employment Law, March 2007 There is an increase in the number of employees who desire to not only discuss their religious beliefs and practices at work, but who also hold religiously based needs to proselytize or affirmatively oppose “sin” in the workplace.
When are single-location bargaining units appropriate for health care employers? By Benjamin E. Gehrt Labor and Employment Law, March 2007 In County of Cook (Provident Hospital, the Illinois Court of Appeals was presented with the issue of what standard should be applied to determine if a single-location bargaining unit is appropriate for a health care employer with multiple facilities. 
Employees called to duty in the National Guard and Reserve—An overview of the applicable federal and Illinois laws By Brian Clauss, James Capparelli, and Lyndsey Kimber Labor and Employment Law, December 2006 The National Guard and Reserves have vital contributions to national security both at home and abroad and reliance upon the citizen soldier has only increased since September 11, 2001.
The Public Safety Employee and Employment Litigation: The effects of Police and Fire Commission proceedings on the federal case By Brian Clauss and Michelle Camden Labor and Employment Law, September 2006 When litigating Federal employment claims of public safety employees1 or proceeding in a discipline hearing before a municipal Board of Police and Fire Commissioners (the “Board”), there are special concerns that a practitioner should consider.
Supreme Court expands categories of conduct that rise to retaliation claim under Title VII By Peter LaSorsa Corporate Law Departments, August 2006 On June 22, 2006 the United States Supreme Court issued a decision that corporations should pay particular attention to regarding employment law.
2005 Illinois Human Rights Commission decisions By Alisa B. Arnoff Labor and Employment Law, March 2006 Recent cases of interest to labor & employment law practitioners.  
Employer liability for harassment by non-employees By Stephen E. Balogh Labor and Employment Law, March 2006 In 1998, the Supreme Court told us that an employer would be liable, pursuant to Title VII, for conduct of its employee which creates an actionable hostile work environment.
A discrimination lawsuit filed by an individual in a protected class who alleges adverse employment action may proceed even though the individual’s replacement is a person in the same protected class By Paul E. Freehling Labor and Employment Law, January 2006 Suppose P, a person in a protected class, alleges that an adverse employment action—such as discharge, failure to hire, demotion, or failure to promote—resulted from, for example, age, disability, gender, national origin, pregnancy, racial or religious bias.
Civil [war] trial By Donald R. Tracy Labor and Employment Law, August 2003 Hagerstown is the county seat of Washington County, Maryland. Hagerstown is in Civil War country.
Your employee files for bankruptcy—Can you terminate employment? By Michael R. Lied and Tyler D. Petersen Commercial Banking, Collections, and Bankruptcy, May 2003 Your bank operates in a small town, maybe even in a town that is not so small. One of your lending officers files for bankruptcy, and the filing is reported in the newspaper.
Arbitration clauses in employment contracts: To do or not to do By Nile J. Williamson Alternative Dispute Resolution, December 2002 A recent article in this newsletter by Alan Kaplan comprehensively discussed possible clauses to be used in employment contracts.
Arbitration clauses in employment contracts: to do or not to do By Nile J. Williamson Labor and Employment Law, May 2002 A recent article in this newsletter by Alan Kaplan comprehensively discussed possible clauses to be used in employment contracts.
Employee drug-testing: Constructing effective programs that avoid the legal pitfalls By Donald R. Tracy Labor and Employment Law, April 2002 On the job drug-use by employees can dramatically affect workplace attitudes and performance.
IDHR stakeholder survey By Nile J. Williamson Labor and Employment Law, June 2001 Because the Labor and Employment Section Council of the Illinois State Bar Association meets approximately four to five times a year it was not possible to respond to the IDHR stakeholder survey until now.
Viability of hostile work environment claims under the ADA in the Seventh Circuit By Nile J. Williamson Labor and Employment Law, April 2001 A viable but frequently overlooked cause of action for the plaintiff's bar in employment litigation concerns hostile work environment claims pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Use of a tape-recorded voice sampling as a basis for an employment termination may violate the Employee Polygraph Protection Act By Anthony J. Jacob Young Lawyers Division, January 2000 Courts have consistently held that lie detector tests are unreliable to find whether a person is innocent or guilty of committing a crime or unauthorized act that would lead to the termination of the person's employment.