Monthly Archives: February 2013

Can an Employer Require Random Alcohol Tests?

A U.S. District Court in Pennsylvania recently addressed the issue of whether an employer may utilize a random alcohol testing policy for its employees. Initially, it is important to note that drug and alcohol testing testing standards differ between government and private sector employers.  Government employers, who are subject to Constitutional search and seizure restrictions, must survive a [...]

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Are Liquidated Damages Mandatory in an FLSA Retaliation Claim?

While recent Court decisions have made it easier for employees to allege retaliation for asserting their right to receive overtime pay under the FLSA, the availability of liquidated damages continues to arise as a disputed issue in retaliation cases. In a successful overtime lawsuit, the FLSA provides that the Court must award liquidated damages (double the unpaid overtime) [...]

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Newsflash: Don’t Post Vacation Pictures While You’re Out On FMLA

Under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), qualified employees are entitled to take up to 12 weeks of protected medical leave in a twelve month period for certain purposes involving serious medical conditions. A qualifying purpose includes a serious health condition that renders the employee unable to perform the functions of their position. In Linebury v. Detroit Medical [...]

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Limitations in Virginia FOIA Law to be Considered by Supreme Court

The Virginia Freedom of Information Act, Va. Code Section 2.2-3700 et. seq, sets the terms and conditions for the request and disclosure of public records from public bodies, agencies and officials in Virginia.   However, not all records are subject to disclosure.  For example, most personnel records are to be kept confidential, except that employees [...]

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Court Dismisses EEOC Suit Asserting Discriminatory Impact of Credit Checks

An Ohio U.S. District Court has dismissed the EEOC’s lawsuit against Kaplan Higher Learning Education Corp., which claimed that Kaplan’s systematic use of credit reports to screen applications for financial positions produced a discriminatory impact on minority applicants.  The decision provides some validation for a common business practice of identifying applicants whose credit background may [...]

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Obama Administration to Push Minimum Wage Increase

As outlined in his State of the Union Address, President Obama will propose an increase in the Federal minimum wage to $9.00 per hour, with additional provisions that automatically adjust the rate with inflation.   Currently the minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, though some states and localities have set a higher rate.  If successful, [...]

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New FMLA Rules on the Horizon

The FLMA, which now has been in effect for 20 years, has been fine tuned over the years through regulations and Court decisions.  In March of 2013 the Department of Labor will approve its latest regulatory modifications. Notable changes involve the calculation of intermittent leave, military caregiver leave for veterans, and qualifying exigency leave for [...]

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