Employment & Labor

Synopsis: Can Employers Require Workers to Vaccinate? And What Happens If Your Workers Refuse the New Vaccine?   Editors Comment: To my understanding, there are two ways the Great Pandemic of 2020 is going to end—“Herd Immunity” or an effective and new vaccine.   “Herd Immunity” is simple and sporadic—right now, 12,637,714 people have such immunity, as they got the disease and should be immune (or no longer with us—not to be rude), going forward. When enough people have the disease and recover from it they have the antibodies needed to fend off future re-infections; around 12.3M U.S. citizens should…
COVID Rules for Residential Evictions The COVID-19 Pandemic has drastically altered the Rules for Residential Evictions affecting both landlords and tenants. The Federal Government and the State of Illinois have enacted rules to protect many individuals from eviction and landlords must be aware of the rules to protect their interests.   The recent Stay-At-Home recommendations and the slowdown in the economy have created pressures on both landlord and tenants. Continue reading
First came Pfizer. Then Moderna. The COVID-19 vaccine is coming. By the time you read this article, even more COVID-19 vaccines may very well be in the mix. But is a COVID-19 vaccine the antidote that brings much needed relief to workplaces across America? Naturally, employers want to know: as employees return to work (whether from a leave of absence or as part of the transition from working from home), can they be required to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine before returning? Or can an employee legitimately object to taking the vaccine? Yes, but with Some Caveats Generally speaking, employers can…
November 23, 2020: Thalia Pacheco and David Fish are conducting a workshop in conjunction with the Warehouse Workers for Justice.  They will cover sexual harassment and discrimination in the workplace.  Click here for the link to watch at 11:00 am via Facebook live. A copy of the handout is available here:   Discrimination and Harassment Presentation Handouts   Topics include: I. What is discrimination? II. What is sexual harassment? III. Is all workplace discrimination and harassment illegal? IV. What type of workplace discrimination and harassment is illegal? V. Examples of discrimination and harassment in the workplace. VI. What should workers…
Contributed by Carlos Arévalo, November 18, 2020 New COVID-19 cases are surging in Illinois, and Illinois is ramping up more restrictions by instituting additional measures throughout the state. Generally, these measures have the objective of limiting gatherings and encouraging people to stay at home, but do not rise to the level of a stay-at-home order. Illinois’ Phase 4 remains in place with the following new restrictions: State of Illinois Manufacturing (Implementation of safety guidelines):  Additional COVID-19 training for all employees (even if previous training occurred) Employers to coordinate with IDPH to implement testing protocols and contact tracing Face coverings…
Chicago Commission on Human Relations Cook County Commission on Human Rights Illinois Department of Human Rights Equal Employ Opp. Comm National Labor Relations Board Race Color Religion Sex (including sexual harassment and pregnancy) National Origin Ancestry Age Disability Sexual Orientation Gender Identity Marital Status Parental Status Source of Income Military Status Credit History Criminal History Retaliation Race Color Religion Sex (including sexual harassment) National Origin Ancestry Age Disability Sexual Orientation Gender Identity Marital Status Parental Status Source of Income Retaliation   Race Color Religion Sex (including sexual harassment) National Origin Ancestry Age Disability Sexual Orientation (includes gender identity) Marital Status…
Contributed by Suzannah Wilson Overholt, November 12, 2020 With the prospect of an FDA approved COVID-19 vaccine on the horizon, employers are already wondering whether they will be able to require their employees to get the vaccine. Because the pandemic has caused changes in other workplace rules, the answer to this question is not clear. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) generally prohibits employers from mandating that employees receive any vaccinations unless they are job-related, consistent with business necessity, and no more intrusive than necessary. This is ordinarily a difficult standard to meet unless the employer is part of…
           Crypto economy has arrived. An actual physical bank will soon be providing the full slate of deposit-taking, custody and fiduciary services for cryptocurrency such as bitcoin. The Cheyenne, Wyoming-based Kraken Financial on September 16 became the first digital asset firm in the U.S. to obtain a federal- and state-recognized bank charter and thus will be regulated very similarly to other American banks. Although the institution will have a physical office in Cheyenne, the plan is to emphasize online and mobile banking, with customer support on call 24/7/365. Continue reading
Synopsis: Biden Wins; Pritzker Loses His Tax Hike; What Does It Mean for Work Comp?   Editor’s comment: I congratulate President-to-be Joseph Biden and forward condolences to the supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump. It is our strong hope our country will continue to thrive and survive. From incoming President Biden, I feel certain we are going to see:   Ramped up efforts to stomp out the Great Pandemic of 2020;   Trillions more in government borrowing for “stimulus” packages to hopefully get us past the economic crisis brought on by the Great Pandemic but continue to steep our country…
Contributed by Jeff Risch, November 6, 2020 As new information unfolds surrounding our understanding of COVID-19, and seeing that the odds appear to be increasing on who may actually get the virus, employers need to be vigilant in examining whether or not an employee contracts the virus at work or in the course of their employment.  In order to assist employers in this exercise and help them possibly defend against legal challenges later (including workers compensation claims), the following updated questionnaire and HR checklist may be useful. The questionnaire and checklist should be kept confidential and used only by…
Contributed by Brian Wacker, November 5, 2020   20420214 – 3d business persons at a workshop. presentation. isolated white background. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued additional guidance to employers as to the compensability of time employees spend attending voluntary training programs under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  In other words, if an employee attends a training program related to work, on his or her own volition and not under compulsion by the employer, must he or she be compensated? The answer, according to the DOL: it depends. Stepping back, the FLSA generally requires that non-exempt employees…
The Securities and Exchange Commission has adopted amendments to the “accredited investor” definition contained in Rule 501(a) of Regulation D which is one of the principal tests for determining who is eligible to invest in private capital raising transactions.  Historically, individual investors who did not meet specific income or net worth tests, regardless of financial sophistication, have been denied the opportunity to participate in such investments. In announcing the changes, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton said: “For the first time, individuals will be permitted to participate in our private capital markets not only based on their income or net worth, but…
Employers Need to Mask Up Against Lawsuits Small businesses face a dizzying swirl of regulations from different levels of government about whether patrons and employees are required to wear masks during the pandemic, as well as whether employers are required to either purchase masks for employees or reimburse them for reasonable costs. The scenario becomes more fraught given the emergence of class-action litigation even when businesses are complying with the mandates and guidelines from the federal, state and local authorities. Going forward, small businesses need to strike a delicate balance between accommodating customers in their public spaces while doing right…
Here at G & G Law, one of our core values is “highest ethics.” As lawyers licensed in Illinois, we’re obviously bound by the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct (“Illinois Rules”), and we take that responsibility seriously.  Our “highest ethics” core value goes even further, though. In everything we do, we consider whether it is the right thing to do: for our clients, for our society, for our country, for our globe, for ourselves.  Tuesday, November 3rd is Election Day. It’s a big one.  The Illinois Rules require that lawyers:  “[F]urther the public’s understanding of and confidence in the rule…
Businesses must follow certain standards and procedures in order to remain open. A class action lawsuit is a legal claim made by employees who are seeking to collectively receive compensation from an employer for the same problem. This type of case can be in response to a faulty or defective product. A collective action is a slightly different procedure used in cases under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Equal Pay Act, and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 1938 is a comprehensive U.S. labor law that creates the right to a minimum…