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In 2010, the Supreme Court held in Stolt-Nielsen SA v. AnimalFeeds International that a court may not compel class-action arbitration when an arbitration agreement is silent on the availability of such arbitration.

Last year, in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, the Supreme Court issued another employer-friendly decision on arbitration when it concluded that the National Labor Relations Act does not usurp an agreement between a company and its worker to arbitrate employment-related claims on an individual, non-class basis.

Yesterday, the Supreme Court finished walking dry the mudhole that it had stomped on employee class-actions in arbitration, right before delivering stunners to everyone. Continue reading

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The Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether the prohibition against sex discrimination in Title VII also covers discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

In other words, are there LGBT legal rights in the workplace? Continue reading

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On Wednesday, I blogged, “If your job applications look anything like this, well, damn, you’ve got some ADA problems.

“This” was a medical questionnaire that inquired about certain medical conditions, whether the employee had an impairment or disability, and whether the employee had previous surgery or received a permanent disability rating.

In other words, questions that were designed to elicit information about whether an individual has a disability.

Not surprisingly, readers asked some good follow-up questions about related ADA issues; stuff that wasn’t part of the low-hanging fruit that the EEOC plucked when it sued the employer with the bad medical questionnaire.

For everyone’s benefit, let’s address those questions today. Continue reading

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I remember once I had a colleague asked me to review an addendum to a job application for a client to make sure it was all good and legal.

It wasn’t.
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Ever since the amendments to the Americans with Disability Act took effect in 2009, management-side employment lawyers have preached to clients that they should focus more on accommodating a disability rather than whether an employee has a disability in the first place.

But, what if you have an employee who seeks an accommodation — time off — for a condition that she claims impacts her ability to work?

Hmmm…

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1976 Sally Field & Joanne Woodward

Lorimar Productions/NBC [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

In 1976, Sally Field played Sybil in the eponymous TV movie. Sybil was a teacher who suffered a breakdown in front of her students, only to be diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder. Throughout the movie, Sybil exhibits multiple personalities — 16 in all.

Some may even consider Sybil to be ‘crazy.’

Or at least someone with a mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities a/k/a a disability. Continue reading

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User:Jennifer Martin [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Earlier this week, the New York City Council approved this bill, which will make it unlawful for most NYC employers to require any job candidate to submit to testing for the presence of any tetrahydrocannabinols or marijuana in such prospective employee’s system as a condition of employment.

Mayor Bill de Blasio is expected to sign the legislation.

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“Doing What’s Right – Not Just What’s Legal”