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Posts by Attorney David McClurg

Court Decision Casts Doubt on Use of Incentives to Encourage Participation in Wellness Programs

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Human Resources, Labor Relations / Comments

The use of biometric testing and health risk assessments in connection with wellness programs arguably violates the ADA's restriction on employment related medical examinations unless the inquiry is “job-related and consistent with business necessity." However, the Act allows such examinations and the collection of medical information as part of an “employee health program" as long as the employee's participation in the program is “voluntary" – a term the Act leaves ...

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7th Circuit Reaffirms: Multi-Month Leave is Not a Reasonable ADA Accommodation

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Employer-Employee Relationship, Labor Relations / Comments

Over a year ago, I reported on a case I was handling in which an employee with a non-work-related back injury requested an additional 2-3 months of leave to undergo back surgery after exhausting his three-months of FMLA leave on more conservative treatment alternatives. Because the employer needed to fill the employee's second shift lead position, and believed it would only be able to find a competent replacement if it ...

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The Obama Overtime Rule is Dead

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Employer-Employee Relationship, Labor Relations / Comments

Last November, a federal judge in Texas blocked implementation of the Department of Labor (“DOL") Rule that raised the salary an employee must earn to be exempt from federal overtime regulations from $455/week ($23,660/year) to $913 per week ($47,476/year). He held that the plaintiffs were likely to prevail on the merits of their argument that the DOL exceeded its authority by imposing such a large increase in the salary test. ...

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Employer-Friendly 7th Circuit Case Highlights Risk of Wage Claim for After Hours Email Communications

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Labor Relations / Comments

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued a decision that will be welcomed by employers, but also acts to remind us of potential trouble that employers face in connection with “after-hours" work performed on mobile devices. The case involved claims by Chicago police officers that they had not been paid for time they spent, after the end of their normal shifts, monitoring and responding to email messages on their ...

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Federal Court Rules that a Company's Website Must be Accessible to Its Blind Patrons

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Labor Relations / Comments

In the first lawsuit of its kind to go to trial, a Florida federal judge recently ruled that Winn-Dixie's website is a “place of public accommodation" subject to the ADA because it is “heavily integrated" with the company's physical store locations. (For example, prescriptions can be refiled on the website and then picked up at the pharmacy located in the store.) As a result, the Court ordered the Company to ...

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The NLRB Invalidates More Employee Handbook Policies

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Labor Relations / Comments

Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act grants employees the right to engage in “concerted activity" for the purpose of “mutual aid and protection." Section 8 of the Act makes it unlawful for an employer to interfere with, restrain or coerce employees in the exercise of those rights. Over the past several years, the National Labor Relations Board has relied on these provisions to invalidate a number of common ...

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Appellate Court Restricts Wisconsin's "Substantial Fault" Disqualification Standard for Unemployment Benefits

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Human Resources, Unemployment Law, Unemployment Disqualification Standards / Comments

The Wisconsin Court of Appeals recently narrowed the scope of the "substantial fault" disqualification standard, added to Wisconsin's Unemployment Act in 2013, by broadly interpreting the exceptions to that standard.

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OBAMA INCREASES EXECUTIVE ACTION ON LABOR & EMPLOYMENT ISSUES

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Labor Relations / Comments

After years of gridlock, President Obama declared in his State of the Union address that he would move forward on employment issues “with or without Congress.” His first Executive Order tied to this threat increased the minimum wage for workers under new federal contracts from $7.25/hour to $10.10/hour, in part to “help build momentum for a minimum wage hike for all Americans.” This Order applies to new contracts and renewals ...

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STATE BUDGET BILL SUBSTANTIALLY CHANGES WISCONSIN’S UNEMPLOYMENT LAWS

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Human Resources, Business Management / Comments

The 2013-2015 biennial budget bill, recently enacted as 2013 Wisconsin Act 20, included many significant changes to Wisconsin’s unemployment insurance (“UI”) law. Although some of these changes took effect immediately after the effective date of the Act 20 (such as increasing work search requirements from 2 to 4 contacts per week) most will first apply to unemployment determinations issued or appealed on or after Jan. 5, 2014.  Several of the ...

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Rules Requiring that Injured Employees Demonstrate 100% Recovery Before Being Allowed to Return to Work Likely Violate the ADA

Posted by Attorney David McClurg in Employer-Employee Relationship, Human Resources, Business Management / Comments

In the past, some employers have required that an injured employee provide a doctor’s slip indicating that they could return to work “without restrictions” or that they were “100% healed” from the injury before the employee would be allowed to return to work. Although employees denied permission to return to work based on such rules sometimes pursued claims against their employers asserting that the employer improperly “regarded” them as disabled, ...

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