Employment & Labor

The client calls are a regular part of my everyday, increasingly so during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Stress. Anxiety. Depression.
The causes are as numerous as the stars in the sky.
Simply put, a growing number of our employees are dealing with serious mental health issues that render them unable to come to work. It’s our new reality, and as employers, we need to know how to manage and support our employee during these difficult times.
Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Labor issued guidance reminding us that the FMLA covers situations when an employee’s mental health condition inhibits them from working.
The
Continue Reading A Key to FMLA Success: Supporting our Employees as Mental Health Issues Arise


The City of Chicago’s newly amended sexual harassment ordinance, which takes effect July 1, will bring an enhanced definition of the term, new written policy and notice requirements, new training requirements for employers, additional safety measures, a longer statute of limitations—and heftier penalties for those found guilty.
Every Chicago business must comply with these new laws.   And the new laws should be words-to-the-wise to all Illinois Businesses in ensuring compliance with state law, which we’ve detailed in this earlier post.
The City’s definition of sexual harassment starts with the notion that people of all gender identities can be
Continue Reading Chicago Adds Specifics—and Teeth—to Sexual Harassment Law

Being suddenly unemployed is a stressful time. For some people, getting fired from their jobs comes as a surprise, and they’re left with questions, especially if they didn’t feel the termination was justified. 

Today, you’ll learn answers to common questions people have after losing their job, such as, “What is wrongful termination in Illinois?” and “What are my options if I’ve been wrongfully terminated in Illinois?”

What constitutes wrongful termination in Illinois?

Illinois is an at-will employment state, which means that both workers and employers may end their employment agreement at any time, or “at-will.” 

For the most part, since
Continue Reading Filing a Wrongful Termination Lawsuit: What to Expect in Illinois

Perhaps flying under the radar of everyone except antitrust lawyers (and the employers who have been targeted), the Department of Justice (DOJ) has made a concerted push recently to use federal anti-trust laws as a tool to bolster workers’ rights, even going so far as to prosecute employers for alleged anticompetitive practices in labor markets. 
Continue Reading Are the Federal Antitrust Laws Now a Weapon for Employee Rights?

If you’ve been injured on the job and received workers’ compensation benefits, you may be wondering, “Will my workman’s compensation claim affect my future employment?” You’re protected under the law if you’ve been involved in a workers’ comp case, and potential employers cannot hold that against you as a condition of hire.

In fact, Illinois law strictly regulates what employers can and cannot ask you regarding past jobs, and workers’ compensation claims are largely protected.

Laws About Workman’s Compensation

According to the Social Security Administration, each state regulates its own workman’s compensation programs. In Illinois, employees are protected from wrongful termination
Continue Reading Can a Workers’ Comp Case Affect Future Employment Opportunities?

Synopsis: The “buried” IL WC IME report… what happens at trial?

Editor’s comment: While Respondents may technically keep an IME report from the trial record on hearsay grounds, doing so often places the defense posture on tenuous ground.

In Kelly Stork v. Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital, 19 WC 27240, 21 IWCC 0032 (2021) Petitioner worked for Respondent as an Obstetrics Technician, assisting doctors during child birth. At the time of accident, Petitioner was holding a woman’s leg during childbirth and alleged she injured her back and hip.

Respondent obtained two IME’s. However, there was a strong suspicion these were less than
Continue Reading 5-15-2022; The "Buried" IME Report–What happens at hearing in IL WC?; UR given proper respect by IL WC Commission; Please don’t hit me.. it may not be covered by IL WC Insurance and more

Many—if not most—employment discrimination and retaliation lawsuits involve a company’s decision (a) to terminate or otherwise discipline an employee or (b) not to hire a particular applicant. And the reason why the company made its decision is quite possibly the most important fact in the majority—if not all—of these cases.
Continue Reading Putting Your Business In A Strong Position To Defend Against Employment
Discrimination Claims

Subchapter V for Small Business Owners
For the past two years, small businesses whose bottom lines were impacted by the onset of COVID-19 enjoyed greater protections while going through Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganizations in the form of higher debt limits under the Small Business Reorganization Act.
That act, passed in August 2019 and enacted as of February 2020, established what came to be called “Subchapter V” of the SBRA, aimed at providing a simpler, less costly and ultimately more beneficial Chapter 11 process for small business debtors who would struggle to afford administrative and other costs.
Continue reading
Continue Reading Small Business Debt Relief

Synopsis: What Am I Missing in IL WC School Bus Driver Claim?Editor’s comment: Every hand is a winner and some hands are losers. When do you stop appealing a ruling to keep losing before every hearing/appeal officer?An IL school bus driver had work that involved picking up children/students in the morning and driving them to school and then returning and picking up students from school in the afternoon and driving them home.The driver began driving a bus with a manual door opener that required the use of a door handle to open/close the bus door at each and every stop.
Continue Reading 4-28-2022; What Am I Missing in IL WC School Bus Driver Claim? and more

Employers with 100 or more employees in Illinois have begun receiving notice that it is time for their business to comply with obtaining their Equal Pay Act Registration Certificate (“EPRC”). In order to obtain the EPRC from the Illinois Department of Labor (“IDOL”) a business must complete an EPRC Compliance Statement, submit their Federal EEO-1 disclosure and provide pay data regarding their Illinois employees. 
Continue Reading Illinois Department of Labor Posts Equal Pay Act Registration Certificate
Compliance Statement Sample and FAQ’s

Contributed by Jeff Risch and Sara Zorich, April 27, 2022

Employers with 100 or more employees in Illinois have begun receiving notice that it is time for their business to comply with obtaining their Equal Pay Act Registration Certificate (“EPRC”). In order to obtain the EPRC from the Illinois Department of Labor (“IDOL”) a business must complete an EPRC Compliance Statement, submit their Federal EEO-1 disclosure and provide pay data regarding their Illinois employees.  Recently, the IDOL, updated its website to provide employers with additional guidance on compliance and samples.

The new FAQ’s have provided clarity for employers
Continue Reading Illinois Department of Labor Posts Equal Pay Act Registration Certificate Compliance Statement Sample and FAQ’s

Contributed by Sara M. Rose on April 22, 2022

Below are some of the latest state updates –

INDIANA

Indiana Code 24-4.9-3-3, which addresses “reasonable” delays in reporting data security breaches, was amended by H.B. 1351 to impose a forty-five (45) day limit on reporting breaches of certain personal information.  Effective July 1, 2022, employers must notify Indiana residents, including employees and applicants, no later than forty-five (45) days after discovering a breach of certain personal information.

MASSACHUSETTS

The COVID-19 Massachusetts Emergency Paid Sick Leave Program ended on March 15, 2022.  However, employers may continue to seek reimbursement for qualifying
Continue Reading Local and State Employment Law Update: COVID-19, Wage Transparency and Criminal Records