SCOTUS Makes Discrimination, Retaliation Lawsuits a Bit Tougher

On Monday, the Supreme Court issued two rulings that led Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to beg Congress to overturn with written legislation. In one case, a 5-4 decision ruled that retaliation claims must be won on a "but-for" basis, and in another case, the same 5-4 majority established that discrimination must originate from a […]

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Supreme Court Finally Agrees to Hear White House Recess Appointments Appeal

The Supreme Court today agreed to take up the issue of whether appointments made by President Obama on Jan. 4, 2012, to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) were legally done under the Constitution's recess-appointment clause. Earlier this year, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the appointments were […]

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NLRB to Petition Supreme Court to Overturn Recess Appointment Decision

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced today that it has determined not to seek en banc rehearing in Noel Canning v. NLRB, in which the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit held that the Jan. 4, 2012 recess appointments of three members to the Board were invalid. The board, in consultation with […]

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Supreme Court to Hear Donning and Doffing Case

The Supreme Court has opted to consider an appeal of a 7th Circuit Court decision that donning and doffing personal protective equipment (PPE) is not a "principal activity" that triggers the start of the workday, and time so spent thus does not have to be compensated. The case, Sandifer, et al. v. U.S. Steel Corp., […]

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Supreme Courts Lets Ruling Stand on Private FLSA Settlements

The Supreme Court has refused to hear an appeal on a 5th Circuit Court's ruling that allowed a private settlement of an overtime dispute. Previously, claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) could only be resolved by a court or the Department of Labor (DOL). The Supreme Court's declining to rule on the private […]

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PPACA Back in Court, This Time on the Constitutionality of the Employer Mandate

A lawsuit challenging Obamacare by Liberty University was originally dismissed by the Supreme Court when it issued its historic decision on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) in June 2012, but under petition, the court has now mandated the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals to reopen the case and examine the constitutionality of […]

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Supreme Court Considering the Definition of Supervisor

Federal civil rights laws protect employees from harassment and discrimination by their employers and their agents, and "agents" are generally interpreted to mean supervisors. Aggrieved employees and their attorneys have long sought to expand the definition of supervisor beyond someone with the power to hire, fire, demote and discipline to enlarge the pool of those […]

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7th Circuit Says Disabled Not Automatically Entitled to Vacant Jobs

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which holds jurisdiction over courts in Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin, has upheld a 2000 decision in which it ruled that the disabled are not automatically entitled to vacant job openings as a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The case under review involved a United Airlines' […]

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Supreme Court Upholds PPACA’s Individual Mandate

The U.S. Supreme Court announced today (June 28, 2012) that it has upheld the individual health insurance mandate (buy insurance or pay a penalty) portion of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) as constitutional under Congress's taxing authority. The victory for the Obama administration was sealed when Chief Justice John Roberts in a […]

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Supreme Court Strikes Down DOL Interpretation of Pharma Reps’ Overtime Status

The U.S. Supreme Court today rejected an interpretation by the Department of Labor (DOL) that pharmaceutical sales representatives are hourly employees subject to overtime day. The 5-4 decision, in Michael Shane Christopher, et al., Petitioners v. SmithKline Beecham Corp. dba GlaxoSmithKline, restores the DOL's position on the issue that existed for decades prior to 2009, […]

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