Employment & Labor

Synopsis: IL Appellate Court, WC Division Awards WC Death Benefits From Passing in year 2006 in Odd Dispute.  Editor’s comment: In Cronk v. IWCC, the IL Appellate Court awarded IL WC Death Benefits to the son of a construction manager who passed 18 years ago!! The facts indicate Decedent Cronk worked for Kimball Hill Homes as a construction manager. He complained of difficulty breathing shoveling snow at a build site in December 2006. Co-workers summoned paramedics, and Cronk went into cardiac arrest in front of them while they were at work. Decedent was taken to the hospital and passed there. The coroner
Continue Reading May 2024; Odd IL WC Death Claim–Still Pending Decades after Passing of Decedent; Another Anti-Lawyer Ruling from our Appellate Court, WC Division and more

Join Sara Zorich, Karen Tobin and Alice Lin on June 11 at 10 AM as they discuss certain employment, corporate and tax considerations employers need to know about in order to effectively manage workers in multiple locations without exposing themselves to liability.
Continue Reading REGISTER NOW – Managing New Legal Mandates for Multi-State Employers –
Webcast on June 11

The first—and a significant—amendment to the Illinois Biometric Privacy Act (BIPA) has just passed both chambers of the Illinois legislature and is headed to Governor Pritzker for approval. SB2979 amends BIPA to address the troubling trend of litigants seeking per-scan damages under BIPA, where a handful of enterprising attorneys have, and continue to file, single-plaintiff cases seeking damages on a per-scan basis that exceed six-figures for a single individual.
Continue Reading BIPA Reform on the Horizon: Illinois Legislature Passes SignificantLegislation Eliminating Per-Scan Damages

Durante una jornada laboral puede ocurrir cualquier accidente que deje daños importantes a uno o varios trabajadores. Existen un sinfín de posibles situaciones que traen consigo afectaciones a la salud como consecuencia de un empleo. Ya sea por una caída repentina, defectos en alguna herramienta, manejo de sustancias peligrosas, o incluso una molestia que se fue generando con el tiempo, las lesiones derivadas del trabajo son una realidad.
Uno de los problemas más graves ocurre cuando el trabajador sufre una enfermedad o lesión crónica como resultado de su trabajo. Es decir, requiere tratamiento médico y hospitalario a largo plazo, o
Continue Reading ¿La compensación por accidente de trabajo cubre tratamientos de larga duración?

As I anticipated, it was not possible for me to get a blog entry up last week with all the traveling I was doing. However, I am back now. Recently, HHS came out with their final 504 regulations, which we previously blogged on the proposed regulations here. There were a few changes that are worth noting but for the most part, the rule is pretty close to the proposed rule. Accordingly, the blog entry is divided into categories and they are: what stayed the same (with a few modifications, you can find a very similar list in the final
Continue Reading HHS Final §504 Regulations

For decades, employers have applied the usual FMLA rules for an employee who cannot work because of limitations due to pregnancy. When these limitations render a pregnant employee unable to work, the employer has always had the right to obtain medical certification to confirm the limitation and the employee’s need for leave from work.

When the FMLA became law in 1993, there was no such thing as the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA), which as of last year requires employers to provide accommodations to individuals limited by pregnancy-related conditions (unless undue hardship exists).

In its final rules implementing the PWFA,
Continue Reading In a PWFA World, Can an Employer Safely Request FMLA Medical Certification for an Absence Due to Pregnancy?

A common question for schools assessing how to comply with the new overtime exemption rule published by the U.S. DOL is what to do about coaches and athletic trainers in light of the new minimum salary requirement for the executive, administrative and professional exemptions.

For coaches, two exemptions may still apply even if the coach’s salary falls below the new thresholds of $884 per week (starting July 1, 2024) or $1,128 per week (starting January 1, 2025). A coach whose primary job duties are instructing student athletes on topics such as athletic performance, physical health, team concepts, and safety, or
Continue Reading Coaches and Athletic Trainers Under the New FLSA Exemption Rules

On April 22, 2024, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) finalized minimum staffing requirements for nursing homes that participate in Medicare and Medicaid. As we noted previously, the rule was announced on September 1, 2023 and was open for public comment until November 6, 2023. The rule was officially published on May 10, 2024. Although the rule becomes effective on June 21, 2024, implementation is phased in over the next five years. 
Continue Reading CMS’s Final Minimum Staffing Standard for Nursing Homes to Go into Effect
on June 21

On May 6, 2024, California’s Supreme Court, in a rare and surprising “employer friendly” decision, held that an employer can avoid penalties under California’s wage statement law, Cal. Lab. Code § 226, if it reasonably and in good faith believed it was providing a complete and accurate wage statement in compliance with the requirements of Cal. Lab. Code § 226(a).
Continue Reading California’s Supreme Court Makes It Harder For Employees to Recover
Penalties In Wage Statement Claims

On April 29, 2024, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued new Enforcement Guidance on Harassment in the Workplace, which goes into effect immediately. For the past five years, over one-third of the charges of employment discrimination received by the EEOC included an allegation of unlawful harassment based on race, sex, disability, or another statutorily protected characteristic. Employers need to be aware of the EEOC’s new enforcement guidance because it expands the scope of conduct that constitutes unlawful “harassment” in the workplace which violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII).
Continue Reading Proper Pronouns, Bathrooms & Misgendering: What HR Needs to Know

In the latest round of state employment law updates family leave and religious accommodations are in the spotlight. We also highlight wage and hour laws relating to compensable time. Read the full article to see if any of these updates apply to you.
Continue Reading State and Local Employment Law Update – Family Leave, Fair Labor Standards
Act, Religious Accommodations and More

Captive audience meetings are on-the-clock meetings (employee attendance is often mandatory) where employers express an opinion on “religious or political matters” – including whether or not employees should join or support any labor organization.
Continue Reading State Bans of On-The-Clock “Captive Audience Speeches” Restrict Employers’First Amendment Rights

Before getting started on the blog entry of the day, I will be out of town not this week, but the week after this week. So, I am not sure if I will get a blog entry up for the next week. I would have to do it next Sunday, but I will also be out of town the end of this week as well. So, don’t be surprised if there is no blog entry for next week.
 
Turning to the blog entry for this week, it is a published decision from the Ninth Circuit decided on April 22,
Continue Reading Hostile Environment Claims are Viable Under Both the Rehabilitation Act as well as the ADA

Non-Competes Now a Nonstarter
This is really big news!
Businesses that have entered into non-compete agreements with current or recently departed employees will need to come up with other ways of achieving the investment-protecting goals those non-competes were designed to accomplish. That’s because the Federal Trade Commission has issued a final rule, which will take after 120 days after publication in the Federal Register, that invalidates current non-competes for most workers and bans new ones for all employees.
Continue reading
Continue Reading Non-Competes Now a Nonstarter

Employees presented with a severance agreement should be aware of a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) decision with significant implications. In a February 2023 ruling, the Board deemed confidentiality and non-disparagement provisions in severance agreements unlawful when presented to employees protected by Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).

The NLRB reasoned that these provisions stifle employees’ exercise of their rights under Section 7, which guarantees workers the right to self-organize, form labor unions, bargain collectively, engage in concerted activities for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection, and refrain from any or all of such
Continue Reading NLRB Throws Shade on Confidentiality, Non-disparagement Clauses in Severance Agreements

Is AI Washing Dirty?
Many people have become familiar with the term “greenwashing,” referring to attempts by a company to cast its products as more environmentally friendly than they are through public relations and marketing “spin” efforts.
Now comes the concept of “AI-washing,” in which companies exaggerate the degree to which or ways in which their products and services are powered by artificial intelligence, in order to gain a real or perceived competitive advantage. In addition to potentially misleading consumers and harming investors, this can break U.S. securities law, according to Gary Gensler, chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Continue Reading Don’t Dirty Your Business’ Reputation by ‘AI-Washing’