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Labor and Employment LawThe newsletter of the ISBA’s Section on Labor & Employment Law

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Newsletter articles from 2002

Appellate Court does the unusual—reverses arbitrator By Michael R. Lied October 2002 Arbitration awards are fairly sacred, because the parties agree to let an arbitrator settle their dispute. However, in Anheuser-Busch, Inc. v. Teamsters, 280 F.3d 1133 (7th Cir. 2002), the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a district court's affirmance of an arbitrator's decision in favor of Teamsters Local 744.
Arbitration clauses in employment contracts: to do or not to do By Nile J. Williamson May 2002 A recent article in this newsletter by Alan Kaplan comprehensively discussed possible clauses to be used in employment contracts.
California trial adventure (or, How I spent my summer vacation) By Donald R. Tracy October 2002 This past summer, I had the unique experience of trying a jury case in California. The trial was in Modesto, Stanislaus County, the home of Chandra Levy's parents. Congressman Condit is from nearby Ceres.
Can your plaintiff-client afford to have the defendant pay her attorney fees? By Daniel S. Alcorn December 2002 Managing the tax aspects of success has always been a difficult yet important part of representing the plaintiff in employment litigation.
Circuit City v. Adams: the battle over arbitration agreements rages on By Glenn R. Gaffney and Justin Gaffney April 2002 In Circuit City Stores, Inc. v. Adams, 121 S.Ct. 1302 (2001), the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA), 9 USC § 1 et seq. is applicable to employment agreements.
Court decides NLRB awarded too much back pay to union salt By Michael R. Lied July 2002 Winston Cox was a full-time union organizer for the IBEW. He was refused employment with a non-union contractor and this was found to be an unfair labor practice.
D.C. Circuit upholds NLRB’s extension of Weingarten rights to nonunion workplace By Daniel S. Alcorn March 2002 Nonunion employers violate the National Labor Relations Act if they refuse an employee's request for the presence of a co-worker during an investigatory interview which the employee reasonably believes will result in disciplinary action.
Defendant sanctioned for failure to adequately participate in mediation By Michael R. Lied July 2002 It's always good to follow the judge's instructions. Nick v. Morgan's Foods, Inc., 270 F.3d 590 (8th Cir. 2001), is an example of why this is true.
Defendant sanctioned for failure to adequately participate in mediation By Michael R. Lied April 2002 It's always good to follow the judge's instructions. Nick v. Morgan's Foods, Inc., 270 F.3d 590 (8th Cir. 2001) is an example of why this is true.
District court issues permanent injunction against Illinois Department of Human Rights By Glenn R. Gaffney May 2002 In Cooper v. Salazar, 2001 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17952 (N.D. Ill. Nov. 01), U.S. District Court Judge Milton Shadur issued a permanent injunction against the Illinois Department of Human Rights, with terms including:
Double breasting: how not to run afoul of the law By Alan M. Kaplan March 2002 Many companies want to split their operations into two halves--one company with union contracts and one company without union contracts.
Drafting an effective release under the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act By Bruce C. Beal May 2002 The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (29 USC 621) ("ADEA") was amended by the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act ("Act") in 1990 in response to the Supreme Court decision in Public Employee's Retirement System of Ohio v. Betts, 109 S. Ct. 256 (1989).
Employee drug-testing: Constructing effective programs that avoid the legal pitfalls By Donald R. Tracy April 2002 On the job drug-use by employees can dramatically affect workplace attitudes and performance.
Employer sues union for defamation related to picketing By Michael R. Lied December 2002 In Lowe Excavating Co. v. International Union of Operating Engineer's Local 150, 327 Ill. App. 3d 711 (2d Dist. 2002), the union picketed a non-union employer with signs stating:
Employers giving guarantees in job offers are promising more than they think By Matthew L. Alden April 2002 This article discusses when offers of employment can change an at-will employment relationship to a contract of employment for a specific term, such as years or months.
Employer’s state law claims relating to labor dispute barred by filing of unfair labor practice charge By Michael R. Lied December 2002 In Overnite Transportation Co. v. International Brotherhood Teamsters, et al, _____ Ill. App. 3d _____, 773 N.E.2d 26, 265 Ill. Dec. 664 (1st Dist. 2002), the Complaint alleged that defendants conspired to commit various tortuous and criminal acts to force the employer to accept the union representation as well as a union contract.
FMLA does not permit employee to keep employer “in the dark” about return date By Michael R. Lied July 2002 In Lewis v. Holsum of Fort Wayne, Inc., 278 F.3d 706 (7th Cir. 2002), the plaintiff suffered an asthma attack at work on December 17, 1997.
A general guide to employment agreements By Alan M. Kaplan March 2002 An employment agreement, like other agreements, creates what every business person wants--certainty. Under American law, parties in a relationship may create their own rules to govern a specific business relationship, as long as the parties meet certain requirements.
Impaired sleep leading to claimed inability to work overtime is not a disability By Michael R. Lied October 2002 In Boerst v. General Mills Operations, Inc., 2002 U.S. App. LEXIS 813 (6th Cir. 2002), the employee claimed he suffered from anxiety, fatigue, difficulty sleeping and inability to concentrate.
ISBA sets ADR program for Midyear meeting December 2002 The CLE Committee of the ISBA has approved a fantastic program on mediation sponsored jointly by the Alternative Dispute Resolution Section Council, the Bench-Bar Section Council, the Civil Practice Section Council, and the Family Law Section Council set for Thursday, December 12, 2002 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Chicago Sheridan Hotel during the midyear meeting.
Minutes of the Labor and Employment Section Council March 2002 Section Council Chairperson, Trisha Crowley, called the meeting to order at 2:00 p.m.
Minutes—Labor and Employment Law Section Council July 2002 Section Council Chairperson, Trisha Crowley, called the meeting to order at 2:00 p.m.
Review of selected 2002 FMLA cases By Alisa B. Arnoff December 2002 Scamihorn v. General Truck Drivers, Office, Food & Warehouse Union, 282 F.3d 1078 (9th Cir. 3/4): Summary judgment for employer denied where genuine issues of material fact existed concerning whether employee's father was capable of self-care and of doing his essential job functions.
Section council resolves to support right-to-sue legislative amendment to Illinois Human Rights Act By Glenn R. Gaffney March 2002 The ISBA's Labor and Employment Law Section Council has resolved to support the concept of proposed legislation which would amend the Illinois Human Rights Act so as to allow complainants the right to file suit in circuit court.
Seventh Circuit clarifies standards for the grant or denial of summary judgment in retaliation cases By Michael R. Lied May 2002 In Stone v. City of Indianapolis Public Utilities Division, 2002 U.S. App. LEXIS 2523 (7th Cir. 2002), the court of appeals set forth standards for the grant or denial of summary judgment in cases alleging retaliation for filing a discrimination charge or engaging in some other protected activity.
Seventh Circuit voids arbitration agreement requiring plaintiff to pay his own costs and attorney fees By Glenn R. Gaffney July 2002 On April 4, 2002, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in the case of McCaskill v. SCI Management Corp., 285 F. 3d 623 ( 7th Cir. 2002) struck as unenforceable an arbitration agreement which required the plaintiff to pay her own costs and attorney fees in a Title VII action.
Seventh Circuit—still paramour-friendly By Alisa B. Arnoff December 2002 The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, in mid-September, affirmed its practice of refusing to recognize "paramour claims" in the context of Title VII sexual discrimination lawsuits.
Supreme Court clarifies Americans With Disabilities Act By Michael R. Lied July 2002 A Toyota Motor Company employee claimed to be disabled from performing assembly line duties by virtue of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and other impairments.
Supreme Court extends reach of hostile environment claims By Jill P. O’Brien and David Manjarres October 2002 Earlier this year the Supreme Court issued an important decision limiting the period of time in which a plaintiff may complain of discrete acts of discrimination, but extends the time period in which a plaintiff may complain of a hostile environment.
Union management negotiations may create custom or practice for purposes of Fair Labor Standards Act By Michael R. Lied October 2002 In Bejil et al. v. Ethicon, Inc., 269 F.3d 477 (5th Cir. 2001), plaintiffs worked at a plant which manufactured surgical sutures and needles.