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Sixth Circuit Holds Telecommuting May Be a Reasonable Accommodation for Employee With IBS

Stressing that technology has made telecommuting easier, the Sixth Circuit yesterday revived the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's claims that Ford Motor Co. failed to accommodate a worker with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) by refusing her request to work from home most days. 

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NLRB Rules College Athletes Are Employees And Can Unionize

While the rest of us have been cheering on our favorite teams or sulking due to our busted March Madness brackets, Northwestern University has been fighting a different battle before the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”).  On March 26, 2014, a regional director for the NLRB ruled that football players at Northwestern qualify as “employees” and have the right to unionize, paving the way for athletes at private educational institutions throughout the country to unionize. 

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The Potentially Unintended Effect of the Unemployment Insurance Integrity Act on Employment Settlement Agreements

The amendments to the Unemployment Insurance Integrity Act quietly went into effect as of October 21, 2013.  Congress passed the Unemployment Insurance Integrity Act (“Act”) in late-2011 as part of the Trade Adjustment Assistance Extension Act of 2011 (“TAAEA”). While the TAAEA is primarily concerned with extending retraining assistance for employees displaced by foreign workers, the Act requires states to incorporate provisions into their own Unemployment Insurance laws to (1) enhance penalties for fraudulent Unemployment Insurance claimants; (2) revise the timing of "new hire" reports; and (3) impose new obligations on employers (and their agents) with respect to responding to Unemployment Insurance claim notices. 

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Facebook Makes Discovery Easy (Sometimes)

As most any litigation practitioner knows, Facebook can be GOLD.  Pictures really are worth 1,000 words. . . or more.  That million dollar picture of a plaintiff who has claimed debilitating emotional distress:  on a boat, raising a beer with friends, and posted smack in the middle of the period of time that plaintiff claims was riddled with “emotional distress.”  GOLD.  And it happens with regularity.  Facebook, as with other social media, is a medium of the moment – individuals post (and get tagged) in pictures posted during the adrenaline-infused, alcohol-fogged moments of “good times.”  And it is exactly these moments – moments easily forgotten by Plaintiffs asking a judge or jury for emotional distress damages – that are crucial to developing a clear picture of emotional distress. 

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Federal Workplace Protections on the Horizon for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

What do Rolling Stone magazine and the United States Senate have in common?  They’re both talking about the discrimination faced by individuals with non-conforming gender identity.

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Sixth Circuit Decision Offers Practical Guidance on Accommodating Disabled Employees

Determining how to reasonably accommodate an employee with a disability can be difficult for employers.  The Sixth Circuit’s decision in Kempter v. Michigan Bell Telephone Co., et al. affirms common-sense law – namely, that in reasonably accommodating a disabled employee, employers are not required to convert temporary light-duty work into a full-time position, reassign a disabled employee to a position he/she is not qualified for, or which would displace another employee’s rights, or create a new position. 

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Sixth Circuit Decision Upholds Stringent Employer FMLA Leave Notice Requirements

In a ruling that bolsters employers’ established FMLA leave notice requirements, the Sixth Circuit affirmed the district court’s decision granting summary judgment in favor of the employer and upheld a former employee’s discharge for failure to follow the call-in requirements of his employer’s attendance policy in White v. Dana Light Axle Manufacturing, LLCThe decision is assuring to employers who have established and adhere to FMLA leave policies that require employees follow specific procedures to notify their employers of their intent to take protected FMLA leave.

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Obesity and the Ever-Broadening Definition of "Disability"

As most employers are aware, the definition of what constitutes a “disability” for purposes of providing a reasonable workplace accommodation was broadened significantly with the enactment of the Americans with Disability Act Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA). 

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More Good News for Employers – Supreme Court Toughens Standards

Employers received more good news from the U.S. Supreme Court this week with decisions in two cases that toughen standards for determining who is a supervisor and for proving retaliation. 

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Supreme Court Again Endorses Arbitration and Class Action Waivers

Yesterday, the Supreme Court issued its long awaited decision in American Express v. Italian Colors Restaurant

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KMK's Management Rights Blog will focus on labor and employment law issues, developments, and musings. We will cover issues and developments in our home state of Ohio and beyond. We are management side lawyers and this blog will focus on the management perspective, which is often ignored or misrepresented in main stream press reporting of labor and employment law developments.

Your participation in the blog through suggestions, requests, comments and criticisms is welcomed. We will try to respond to any emails we receive, time permitting. If we refer to comments we receive in future posts, we will not attribute them without permission.

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