When Must Employers Comply with New FMLA Leave Requirements?

February 01, 2008 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

Update: New FMLA regulations issued by DOL on November 14, 2008

The recently enacted military family leave grants two new types of Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave to the relatives of military personnel. In short, the law requires employers to provide:

  • 12 weeks of leave to employees who have a spouse, parent, or child who is on or has been called to active duty in the Armed Forces when they experience “any qualifying exigency,” and
  • up to 26 weeks of leave to employees who are the spouse, parent, child, or next of kin of a servicemember who incurred a serious injury or illness on active duty in the Armed Forces.

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Categories: FMLA

Employers Can Restrict Union Use of Company E-mail

December 28, 2007 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has ruled that employers can prohibit employees from using company e-mail to send union-related messages while allowing some personal use of e-mail.

In a 3-2 decision dated December 16 but released December 21, the NLRB majority ruled that the e-mail policy of Eugene, Oregon, newspaper The Register-Guard wasn’t a violation of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The company’s written policy prohibited the use of e-mail for “non-job-related solicitations.” But in practice, it allowed a number of nonwork-related employee e-mails. There was no evidence, however, that it permitted e-mails urging support for groups or organizations.

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Categories: NLRB Decisions

Supreme Court Hands Down Retaliation Decision

June 30, 2006 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

by Peter Panken

On June 22, the U.S. Supreme Court decided an employment retaliation case in which it held that any action by an employer against an employee, applicant, or even a former employee constitutes unlawful retaliation if the action would deter a reasonable employee from filing a discrimination charge against an employer.

Retaliation cases now make up 30 percent of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s docket and will increase substantially as a result of this decision. Moreover, employees now will want to get their cases before juries because they hope jurors will be so mad at the employer that they’ll award compensatory and punitive damages.

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U.S. Supreme Court Scrutinizes Racial Bias Ruling

March 03, 2006 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

After several years of employees being required to meet a very high standard to have their cases heard by a jury, that may be changing in the long term. The U.S. Supreme Court recently cautioned federal judges to be careful in the rules of evidence and legal standards for employment discrimination. The Court’s opinion offers employers guidance on the amount of evidence needed to prove racial bias and pretextual reasons for decisions.

The case, Ash v. Tyson Foods, Inc., involved two African-American employees passed over for promotion in favor of two Caucasian employees. Part of their proof of racial bias was evidence that the manager who made the promotion decision had referred to them as “boy.” The Eleventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected their argument, saying that use of the word “boy” by itself, with no racial adjectives modifying it, wasn’t evidence of discriminatory intent.

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