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Newsletter articles from 2003
Civil [war] trial
Hagerstown is the county seat of Washington County, Maryland. Hagerstown is in Civil War country.
Court finds assignment to harder job is not an adverse employment action
In White v. Burlington Northern & Santa Fe Railway Company, 310 F.3d 443 (6th Cir. 2002), White was a track maintenance worker who primarily operated a fork lift. White complained the employer treated her differently because of her sex and said her foreman had twice made inappropriate remarks
High court sets limits on punitive damages
On April 7, 2003, the United States Supreme Court decided a significant case which seems to, for the first time, establish some constitutional limits on awards of punitive damages.
Illinois Whistleblower Act becomes effective January 1, 2004
This summer, the Illinois legislature passed the Whistleblower Act. The Act applies to employers in Illinois, including individuals, sole proprietorships, partnerships, firms, corporations, associations and any other entity having one or more employees in Illinois
Minimum wage changes
The Illinois minimum wage rate increases to $5.50 per hour on January 1, 2004. It next rises to $6.50 per hour January 1, 2005.
New leave rights for victims of domestic violence
The Illinois Victims Economic Security and Safety Act ("VESSA") became effective August 25, 2003. VESSA has similarities to both the Family and Medical Leave Act as well as the Americans With Disabilities Act.
Public sector employers and the FLSA’s salary test
The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals has recently issued an opinion with the most comprehensive discussion to date on the Department of Labor's regulation of the FLSA's salary test concerning deductions for partial-day absences for sickness or personal reasons.
SB 1492-Right to sue legislation fails in the House
The ISBA Labor & Employment Law Section Council previously 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 for an employment action (Article 2) under the Illinois Human Rights Act.
SB 266 modifies Unemployment Insurance Act attorney fee provision
Section 1200 of the Illinois Employment Insurance Act (820 ILCS 405/1200), entitled "compensation of attorneys," provides that an individual claiming benefits in a proceeding before the IDES or the Board of Review can be represented by counsel but that the fee charged can be no more than an amount approved by the Board of Review or by the Director.