Jump to Navigation

Employment Law Blog

Osborne v. Baxter Healthcare Corp., No. 14-8047 (10th Cir. Aug. 24, 2015)

The Tenth Circuit reviews an ADA claim of a deaf applicant for technician at a plasma-donation center. It holds that a health-care provider cannot fend off an analysis of whether a proposed accommodation for a disabled employee is reasonable simply by arguing that any risk to patients, however infinitesimal, is unacceptable.

Zamora v. City of Houston, No. 14-20125 (5th Cir. Aug. 19, 2015)

It's not often that we get published federal appellate decisions from fully-tried Title VII cases, but here's one from the Fifth Circuit that (among other things) reviews an award in a retaliation case for "future reputational harm." The panel substantially affirms the $127,000 award, though it remands the case for reconsideration of remittitur in light of the plaintiff abandoning one of his damages theories on appeal.

Burton v. Freescale Semiconductor, Inc., No. 14-50944 (5th Cir. Aug. 10, 2015)

The Fifth Circuit becomes the latest circuit to grapple with the temporary (or joint) employer issue under the federal anti-discrimination laws. It concludes in this case that there was a genuine dispute of material fact about which entity (or both) employed the plaintiff for purposes of the ADA. The panel also holds that there was a genuine dispute about pretext, where the alleged grounds for termination - among other things, her using the Internet while at work - may not have been known to the decisionmaker at the time the plaintiff was fired.

District Court Split Persists Over Dodd-Frank's Definition of "Whistleblower"

When Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act ("Dodd-Frank") in 2010, it included new protections for whistleblowers who spoke up about securities laws violations. Despite Congress's clear intent to shield whistleblowers from retaliation, courts have been divided over just who qualifies as a "whistleblower."

Chicago Teachers Union, Local No. 1 v. Board of Education of the City of Chicago, No. 14-2843 (7th Cir. Aug. 7, 2015)

One of the challenges recently facing groups of employees hurt by discriminatory employment practices has been to persuade courts to allow the entire controversy to be decided in a single class action. Today, the Seventh Circuit issued a decision that helps break down some of the barriers to effective class certification, in a case involving a city school board's policy of placing schools on suspension - primarily affecting minority neighborhoods - and firing teaching staff.

Companies Must Disclose Ratio of CEO Pay to Median Employee Pay

The SEC voted on Wednesday to require public companies to disclose the ratio of its CEO's compensation to the median compensation of its employees. The new rule, which was approved by a 3 to 2 vote, stems from a mandate included in the Dodd Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

Littlejohn v. City of New York, No. 14-1395 (2d Cir. Aug. 3, 2015)

Addressing an issue that has sowed uncertainty among federal courts, the Second Circuit holds that a Title VII plaintiff satisfies the Rule 8 pleading standard of "plausibility" under the Supreme Court's Iqbal decision simply by alleging the prima facie elements of her case. Swierkiewicz v. Sorema N. A., 534 U.S. 506 (2002), remains good law, and the plaintiff need not anticipate the defendant's furnishing of a non‐discriminatory justification for its action in the complaint. The panel also rejects application of a so-called "manager rule" that would preclude a retaliation claim by an EEO director who opposes discrimination in the course of her duties.

EEOC Rules Sexual Orientation-Based Discrimination is Sex Discrimination Under Title VII

Last Thursday, the EEOC issued a groundbreaking decision that held, in clear and unequivocal language, that claims of discrimination based on sexual orientation implicitly state a claim of sex discrimination under Title VII. See Complainant v. Foxx, EEOC DOC 0120133080, 2015 WL 4397641, at *10 (July 16, 2015). This decision comes on the heels of the Supreme Court's landmark decision granting same-sex couples the right to marry under the Fourteenth Amendment. Obergefell v. Hodges, 135 S. Ct. 2584, 2608 (2015).

Yazdian v. ConMed Endoscopic Tech., Inc., No. 14-3745 (6th Cir. July 14, 2015)

How much credence must a district court give to an employer's argument in a Title VII retaliation case that the employee was terminated not for his protected activity, but because of his tone of voice, insubordination and "unprofessional behavior" in making his complaints. The Sixth Circuit reverses summary judgment (in part), holding that such generalized reasons so closely related to a protected activity cannot be resolved by a judge and must be evaluated by a jury.

Confidentiality Agreements and the Aleynikov Case: A Cautionary Tale

Employees, particularly those with access to sensitive company information, are typically required by their employers to maintain the confidentiality of such information. This requirement may be found in the employee handbook or may be contained in a restrictive covenant agreement, employment agreement, or severance agreement. Violating a confidentiality obligation can have serious consequences, including hefty monetary damages in a civil lawsuit. For one Goldman Sachs employee, however, the consequences were even more severe: Sergey Aleynikov was criminally prosecuted--twice--for taking confidential material with him when he resigned his position. His controversial second conviction was overturned earlier this week.

subscribe to this blog's feed subscribe to this blog's feed

tell us about your case

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close
facebook twitter linked in

our office locations

New York Office
3 Park Avenue, 29th Floor
New York, NY 10016
Phone: 212-245-1000
Map and Directions

Chicago Office 
161 N. Clark Street, Suite 4700
Chicago, IL 60601
Phone: 312-809-7010
Map and Directions

San Francisco Office
One Embarcadero Center, 38th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: 415-638-8800
Map and Directions