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Porter Wright’s Labor and Employment Department represents management clients in matters ranging from complex employment discrimination and wrongful discharge litigation, including class actions and ERISA litigation, to compliance with various federal, state, and local employment laws and regulations, including the FLSA. 

Recent Blog Posts

  • Sixth Circuit decision shows similarly situated employees must truly be similarly situated in discrimination cases By Adam Bennett    Employers facing workplace discrimination claims in the 6th Circuit should find some comfort in the court’s recent decision in DeBra v. JP Morgan Chase & Co., which endorses a heightened standard for plaintiffs to demonstrate that they were treated less favorably than similarly situated employees outside their protected class. The plaintiff worked as a bank teller for Chase until she was terminated for on-the-job errors, such as overpaying customers, leaving bank funds unsecured on counters and accidentally failing to... More
  • U.S. Department of Labor issues new opinion letters covering FMLA and FLSA issues By Brian Hall    On Tuesday, August 28, 2018, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced the issuance of six new opinion letters covering a variety of issues under the FMLA and FLSA. Specifically, the opinion letters address the following issues: “No-fault” attendance policies and roll-off of attendance points under the FMLA Organ donors’ qualification for FMLA leave Compensability of time spent voluntarily attending benefit fairs and certain wellness activities Application of the commissioned sales employee overtime exemption to a company that... More
  • Sixth Circuit holds that employer was not required to extend lunch breaks for exercise as reasonable accommodation By Rebecca Kopp Levine    Many people exercise daily, and for Shannan McDonald, her exercise was prescribed by her physician for her genetic disorder.  McDonald, employed as a receptionist for UAW-GM Center for Human Resources (CHR), regularly exercised in her employer’s on-site gym during her lunch break.  Per the collective bargaining agreement that covered her employment, each year CHR permitted employees to elect annually whether to take a 60 minute lunch break or a 30 minute lunch break with two other 15... More
  • Sixth Circuit upholds agreement to arbitrate FLSA claims on individual basis By Brian Hall    On Aug. 15, 2018, the Sixth Circuit in Gaffers v. Kelly Services, Inc. held that the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) does not render an arbitration agreement that requires claims to be brought individually illegal and unenforceable. Following the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, which held that a federal statute does not displace the Arbitration Act unless it includes a “clear and manifest” congressional intent to make individual arbitration agreements unenforceable, the court... More
  • More news from the NLRB on work rules By Arslan Sheikh    The Obama-era NLRB sometimes gave employers fits with decisions and guidance concerning employer work rules. It was common for the Obama-era Board to strike down fairly common, neutral work rules, often based on the idea that employees might interpret the rules to restrict employee rights. It did not take long for Trump-era NLRB appointees, however, to put their stamp on National Labor Relations Act law (see our article about some early actions by Trump NLRB appointees). The current... More
  • Sixth Circuit finds insurance coverage for phishing losses By Brian Hall    The risk of loss due to some form of cyberattack should prompt employers to consider insuring against those losses. But, not all cyberinsurance policies are created equal. That point is made abundantly clear in the recent 6th Circuit case, American Tooling Center, Inc. v. Travelers Casualty and Surety Co. of America. The plaintiff, American Tooling Center, Inc. (ATC) is a Michigan-based manufacturer that subcontracts some of its manufacturing work to a Chinese vendor. During a time period that... More
  • U.S. Supreme Court rules that public sector unions may no longer collect fees from nonmembers By Arslan Sheikh    On Wednesday, June 27, 2018, the United States Supreme Court ruled in a 5-to-4 decision that the application of public sector union fees to nonmembers is a violation of the nonmembers’ First Amendment rights. The Court’s decision in Janus v. AFSCME overturns precedent established in a 1977 Supreme Court decision, Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, where the Court allowed the collection of union fees from nonmembers for collective bargaining related costs, excluding lobbying and political expenses. In... More
  • Final association health plan regulations provide opportunity for small employers…maybe By Seth Hanft    In February, we reported that the Department of Labor (DOL) issued a proposed rule that could make it easier for small businesses to join together to purchase health insurance. That proposed rule sparked considerable debate on the general merits of association health plans (AHPs), as well as on the nuances of the proposed rule. Some commentators and experts remained skeptical of such arrangements, citing to the history of AHPs being used as a vehicle for fraud. Others were... More
  • Adding more confusion to the world of website accessibility, WCAG 2.1 has been published By Jamie LaPlante    As many of you know, we have been keeping up on the growing litigation involving the accessibility of websites under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in our past posts: “Florida federal judge holds that supermarket chain’s website must be accessible to disabled” and “ADA public accommodations law reform on its way?” Many stakeholders have urged that websites of businesses that operate public accommodations should be accessible to the WCAG 2.0 AA standard. WCAG is the Web Content... More
  • Uber app decision in California highlights ongoing litigation for website and app accessibility By Jamie LaPlante    A California federal court refused to dismiss a case against Uber alleging that its app did not offer accessible ride options even though the plaintiffs failed to even download the app. In Crawford v. Uber Tech. Inc., the Northern District of California denied a motion for judgment on the pleadings based on a lack of standing. Uber alleged that the plaintiffs lacked standing to challenge its mobile application because both users admitted that they never download the app. The... More