Susan King was hired in 2001 by Acosta Sales and Marketing, a food broker. King was a business manager, and Acosta also employed men in the same job classification, doing the same work, and under the same conditions. But the men received more than twice King’s pay. In fact, all of the men were paid more than all but one of the women in the business manager position. And it took that woman six years to achieve her $60,000 salary. The male employees exceeded the $60,000 salary faster. (more…)
Employment Law Blog
Bamberger Seminar – What Employers Want to Know About Responding to EEOC Charges and Unemployment ClaimsThursday, April 19th, 2012
We are listening to your feedback and addressing your questions regarding employment law and how it affects business decision makers. Join the attorneys at Bamberger on Wednesday, May 16th at 11:30 am – 1:00 pm as we present an in-depth review of a couple of hot topics in human resources — responding to Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and state agency charges, and unemployment compensation claims. (more…)
Introducing “E-RACE” – The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s Initiative to Eradicate Racism and ColorismThursday, April 12th, 2012
The EEOC’s E-RACE Initiative is a program dedicated to “Eradicating Racism and Colorism from Employment.” More specifically, the EEOC’s goal for the E-RACE initiative is to address what it describes as “21st Century manifestations of discrimination.” And the EEOC identifies these 21st Century Manifestations as including arrest and conviction records, as well as other pre-employment hiring practices. But the emphasis is on arrest and conviction records, since the EEOC maintains that an employers’ reliance on those records results in a disparate impact on African-American and Hispanic minorities. The EEOC has shown renewed interest in background check policies and has used “systemic investigations” in the E-RACE initiative. (more…)
Effective April 3, 2012, employers covered by Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) will be subject to the same recordkeeping requirements imposed under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act (T VII) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The new requirement comes from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), which recently published its final rule on the subject. (more…)
The top court in Illinois recently reinforced that restrictive covenants in employment agreements are enforceable as long as adequate consideration exists and the restraints in question are reasonable. The court noted that the question of reasonableness requires a three-prong test: (1) the restraint must be necessary to protect the legitimate business interest of the employer; (2) it must not impose an undue hardship on the employee or the public; and (3) the scope of the restraint must be otherwise reasonable. (more…)
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration—both part of the Department of Transportation—issued a new rule effective January 3, 2012 restricting the use of hand-held mobile telephones and devices by drivers of commercial motor vehicles (CMV). The rule amends Federal Motor Carrier Safety regulations and Hazardous Materials regulations. It restricts CMV drivers from reaching for or holding mobile telephones while operating their vehicles, or pushing more than one button to operate the
Last week, the United States Supreme Court announced its unanimous decision in Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC. This case concerns the “ministerial exception” to an employment discrimination claim. Here, a teacher at a Lutheran school was terminated and then filed a discrimination complaint under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The church and its affiliated school defended the claim by arguing, in part, that the teachers’ duties were “ministerial” and that the First Amendment prohibited the Court from hearing a suit by a minster against her church claiming a violation of employment
discrimination laws. The Supreme Court had not previously addressed the existence of this “ministerial exception.” But this ruling holds that the First Amendment prohibits such claims. The decision does not provide a “bright-line test” concerning the limitations of who is to be considered a “minister.” But it found that this teacher (with her formal title, the substance of that title, her own use of the title, and the important religious functions she performed for the Church) was within the meaning of a “minister.” Accordingly, the church and school were protected from suit by the First Amendment. (more…)
The U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) has developed a new application for employees. It’s a free application for smartphones—currently it’s only available for iPhone® and iPod Touch®—but DOL
may expand it to other platforms such as Android® and BlackBerry®. The app is free and enables employees to record their own work hours. Employees without smartphones can print time sheets from the DOL site.
Both the app and the time sheets can be downloaded from www.do.gov/whd or from traditional app servers like iTunes. The employee is able to enter the employer’s name, the employee’s hourly rate, and the day the employee’s workweek begins. Once saved, that data will allow the employee to tap in the employer’s name for a prompt to “Start Work,” “Stop Work,” “Start Break,” etc. DOL claims it is preparing upgrades that will allow employees to track tips, commissions, bonuses, deductions, holiday pay, weekend pay, shift differentials, and more. The app will flash a warning if—based on the information the employee inputs—it appears the employee is not being paid the federal minimum wage.
The app and the printable versions contain a glossary of terms defining breaks, gross pay, and the workweek. The app provides contact information for the DOL Wage and Hour Division.
And it is the DOL’s hope that the app will aid in wage and hour investigations. (BEWARE—DOL has a larger budget and more investigators.)
The new app was developed, at least partially, as a result of the ease with which employees can work outside of the employers’ facilities. DOL is concerned that some of that work may be done unwillingly and without adequate compensation. And DOL has made it clear that if there is any reason to believe that an employer’s time records are inaccurate, DOL will rely on the employee’s records. So employers should ensure that their timekeeping and payroll mechanisms are reliable, and prepare to address any conflicting employee records.
Please contact Bamberger’s employment law attorneys for advice about what employers should do, now that the DOL app is here.
Back by popular demand, join the attorneys at Bamberger for the 3rd Annual Employment Law Horror Stories seminar presentation. This complimentary seminar will be held on Wednesday, October 26th from 7:45-9:00 am. (more…)
A new law in Indiana may open opportunity for job applicants with past indiscretions, while at the same time limiting information available to employers. Individuals who have been convicted of a misdemeanor or class D felony that did not result in injury to a person may petition a court to seal records of the conviction. If eight (8) years have passed since a person has satisfied the obligations of their sentence for the misdemeanor or class D felony and they have not been convicted of another felony during those eight years, a court shall order the record of the conviction sealed from access by a noncriminal justice agency. Law enforcement may still access the records for criminal justice purposes. However, a non-law enforcement request for a background check will not reveal the past records. (more…)