Illinois Bar Journal


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Articles on Employment Law

Departing Executives and the Wage Payment Act By Richard L. Miller and John Haarlow, Jr. March 2008 Article, Page 138 The Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act can be a powerful tool for departing executives who haven t been properly compensated.
No psych-record access for “garden variety” employee emotional distress claims By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2008 LawPulse, Page 66 A recent ruling explains when employer-defendants can and cannot get access to employee-plaintiffs' medical and psychological records when employees sue for emotional distress cause by illegal discrimination.
The perils for employers of hiring private investigators By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2008 LawPulse, Page 66 Employers who retain companies to investigate employee malingering or misconduct need to hire carefully and monitor appropriately.
Employer’s unilateral revisions to handbook did not convert plaintiff to at-will employee January 2008 Illinois Law Update, Page 16 On November 13, 2007, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, reversed the order of the Circuit Court of Cook County by holding that an employer’s unilateral offer of new benefits did not effectively modify an employee’s contract to convert him to an at-will employee. 
The New Illinois Right-to-Sue Law for Employment Discrimination By Stephen E. Balogh, Randall D. Schmidt, and Lindsey Marcus January 2008 Article, Page 30 The Illinois Human Rights Act now provides for a right to a jury in the Illinois circuit court in employment discrimination cases.
Assembly restricts federal government employment verification systems. PA 095-0138 December 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 632 Section 12 has been added to the Right to Privacy in the Workplace Act, prohibiting employers from using employment verification systems, including the Basic Pilot program. 820 ILCS 55/12. 
Disciplining Attorneys and Other FLSA-Exempt Employees for Attendance Problems By Jon D. McLaughlin November 2007 Article, Page 600 Suppose your associate or paralegal shows up late for work. Can you dock her pay without transforming her fram an exempt to a nonexempt employee under the Fair Labor Standards Act?
Guidelines passed for distinguishing employees and independent contractors. PA 095-0026 October 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 516 The Illinois General Assembly has passed the Employee Classification Act in an attempt to prevent the improper identification of employees as independent contractors.
Sexual Harassment: No More “Welcomeness” Defense Against Minors By Eugene H. Hollander September 2007 Article, Page 486 A recent case eliminates the defense that an underage sexual-harassment plaintiff welcomed the sexual contact.
Whistleblower Act does not preempt common law action for retaliatory discharge September 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 460 On July 3, 2007, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, reversed the order of the Circuit Court of Cook County dismissing Melissa Callahan's complaint for common law retaliatory discharge.
Employers win pay-disparity case in Supreme Court By Helen W. Gunnarsson August 2007 LawPulse, Page 398 In Ledbetter, the Supreme Court rules that Title VII's filing deadline bars employment discrimination claims based on decisions that occurred outside the limitations period, even if the employee's current pay is lower because of the decisions.
Local public entity immune from retaliatory discharge claim August 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 404 On June 6, 2007, the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District, affirmed the order of the Circuit Court of Lake County dismissing Gregory Smith's retaliatory discharge complaint against the Waukegan Park District. 
Melena and Mandatory Arbitration Agreements in Employment Contracts By Andrew Harris August 2007 Article, Page 418 A look at the Illinois Supreme Court's arbitration-friendly decision in Melena, complete with pointers for drafting or challenging arbitration clauses in its wake.
A Primer on Qualified Pension and Profit-Sharing Plans By Stephen M. Margolin and Harvey S. Shifrin July 2007 Article, Page 376 Pension and profit-sharing plans are more valuable than ever. Here's an overview for business advisors.
Arbitration panel exceeded its authority by ignoring plain language of contract June 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 292 On March 29, 2007, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, reversed the decision of the Circuit Court of Cook County confirming an arbitration award in favor of the plaintiffs on the plaintiffs' claim that defendants had improperly terminated their management agreement for several apartment complexes. 
Day laborers protected under Minimum Wage Law -PA 094-1102 May 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 236 The Illinois General Assembly (Assembly) has amended the Minimum Wage Law in order to protect the interests of day laborers and other short term employees. 
Liquidated Damages: The Forgotten Remedy in Noncompete Disputes By Kenneth J. Vanko May 2007 Article, Page 254 Damages are often difficult to prove in unfair competition cases. Liquidated damages clauses can provide an effective - and efficient - remedy.
Litigating Noncompetition Agreements: The Employee’s Perspective By Patrick M. Kinnally May 2007 Article, Page 250 Your client's former employer goes to court seeking a TRO to enforce a noncompete agreement against him. What do you do?
A new, stricter test for independent contractor status? By Helen W. Gunnarsson May 2007 LawPulse, Page 230 Has the Illinois Supreme Court embraced a test that makes it harder for employers to classify workers as independent contractors rather than employees and thus avoid employee-related taxes and other expenses?
New incentives to promote jobs in the film and bioscience industries March 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 124 56 Ill Adm Code 2650 has been amended by the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (Department). 
The Search for Illegal Workers: When Homeland Security Comes Knocking By Minnie Fu and Neil H. Dishman March 2007 Article, Page 132 DHS is stepping up enforcement against companies suspected of employing unauthorized workers. Here's how to survive a DHS investigation.
State Law Tort Claims - A New Weapon in Employment Discrimination Cases? By Eugene K. Hollander March 2007 Article, Page 146 A recent seventh circuit case bucked convention and allowed a state tort claim in an employment discrimination action.
The Supreme Court Widens the Opening for Title VII Retaliation Claims By Adam C. Wit January 2007 Article, Page 36 In Burlington Northern, the Court resolved in favor of employees a lower-court dispute about what constitutes forbidden retaliation.
New rules for work-at-home solicitations - PA094-0999 December 2006 Illinois Law Update, Page 650 The Illinois General Assembly has added Section 2XX to the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act (Act), adopting new rules to govern the solicitation of work-at-home employees. 815 ILCS 505/2XX. 
No breach of fiduciary duty in planning a new, competing business December 2006 Illinois Law Update, Page 650 On September 27, 2006, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, upheld the Circuit Court of Cook County's findings that the appellees, Hallman and McQueen, did not violate their fiduciary duties as former employees of Cooper Linse Hallman Capitol Management, Inc (Cooper).
Employers’ Tort Liability for Employees’ Injuries: A Primer By Jennifer E. Simms November 2006 Article, Page 602 An overview of the interplay between the workers' comp and contribution statutes and the cases interpreting them.
Harsher new penalties under the Minimum Wage Act - PA 094-1025 November 2006 Illinois Law Update, Page 584 The Illinois General Assembly has amended section 12 of the Minimum Wage Act (Act) to create more severe penalties for employers who fail to meet the requirements of the Act. 820 ILCS 105/12. 
Employers not responsible for employee fatigue October 2006 Illinois Law Update, Page 526 On July 14, 2006, the Illinois Appellate Court, Third District, affirmed the decision of the Circuit Court of La Salle County, dismissing plaintiff Behrens' complaint against Harrah's for failure to state a claim. 
Employees granted leave time to donate blood September 2006 Illinois Law Update, Page 464 The Illinois Department of Public Health has added new sections to part 985 of title 77, 77 Ill Adm Code 985. 
Employer sues ex-employee under computer fraud law for deleting data - and wins By Helen W. Gunnarsson September 2006 LawPulse, Page 458 A company used civil provisions of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act against a departing employee who irrevocably deleted business information from his laptop.