Interactive Process in Action

If you’re not sure what the interactive process is supposed to look like under the ADA, peruse the facts of the 8th Circuit’s decision in Minnihan v. Mediacom. I’m also going to summarize the facts below, but if you want to read the legal analysis too go ahead and read the full decision. Minnihan worked [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:10+00:00March 19th, 2015|Employment Law|

The NLRB’s War on Employee Policies

{Before skipping this post because you don’t have a union, remember that the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) applies to employers without unions too.  You can read about the application of the NLRA to non-union employers here.} War might be an extreme description, but the NLRB has been issuing decisions that declare run-of-the-mill employee policies [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:11+00:00April 25th, 2014|Employment Law|

Employment Law Round-Up

A lot has happened in the employment law world in the last few weeks.  Here's a short round-up of some noteworthy items: The Iowa Supreme Court held that punitive damages are not permitted in claims under the Iowa Civil Rights Act.  The decision is not revolutionary and only confirms what the Court has said since the [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:11+00:00July 1st, 2013|Employment Law|

US Supreme Court Adopts Ministerial Exception to Discrimination Laws

In the unanimous Hosana-Tabor v. EEOC decision issued January 11, 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court recognized for the first time a "ministerial exception" to virtually all forms of employment discrimination. The "ministerial exception" as announced by the Court is not a prohibition against asserting claims against religious organizations, rather an affirmative defense. The facts of the case are straightforward: Cheryl Perich [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:12+00:00January 20th, 2012|Employment Law|

Unemployment Benefits for Iowans

An article in the Des Moines Register today reported that the percentage of unemployed Iowans fell to 4.2% in September. This is down 0.3% from August and up 0.4% from a year ago. The national unemployment rate is 6.1%. While Iowans seem to be better off than the rest of the country, Iowans in the 4.2% may be [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:16+00:00October 21st, 2008|Employment Law|

Liability for Non-Employee Sexual Harassment?

It should be obvious to all employers that sexual harassment in the workplace is prohibited. Most employers also understand their obligation to discipline employees who engage in harassing behavior in the workplace. But what about the non-employee harasser? Many companies are not self-sustaining—they rely on customers, vendors, outside sales persons and other non-employees to drive their business. You, as [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:16+00:00June 11th, 2008|Employment Law|

FMLA Has A New Look

The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), enacted in 1993, was amended January 28, 2008.  Prior to the amendment eligible employees were able to take up to 12 workweeks of unpaid leave in four circumstances. The amendment expands the FMLA to include leave related to family members of military service people. ReadPresident Signs FMLA Expansion for Military Families [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:17+00:00January 29th, 2008|Employment Law|

Responding to Reference Requests

When an employee-employer relationship is terminated, either amicably or not, employers may be asked to provide a reference for the former employee.  Providing both positive and negative references for former employees may result in legal liability for employers.  Negative references may result in a slander or defamation action by the former employee.  False positive references [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:17+00:00December 31st, 2007|Employment Law|

Maintaining a Temporary Worker’s Status as Temporary

The Question of the Week posted this week got me thinking about the classification of temporary employees. Temporary workers are workers that are employed by a staffing agency which supplies workers to the client company. Temporary workers report to the client, but receive pay and benefits from the staffing agency. Temporary workers, therefore, are considered to be the [...]

By |2019-10-21T18:48:17+00:00December 17th, 2007|Employment Law|

At-Will Employment

Iowa is an at-will employment state. The term at-will presumes that employment is voluntary and indefinite for both employers and employees. Either party can terminate the relationship at any time. For employers, however, there are some exceptions to the at-will doctrine. Obviously employers cannot violate state or federal laws when firing employees. Employers may also not terminate employees if [...]

By |2015-10-07T15:26:53+00:00October 27th, 2007|Employment Law|
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