Employers – Do Not Ignore Doctor’s Note re Employee’s Disability

A recent EEOC settlement serves as a reminder to employers not to make judgments about whether an employee can perform a job – especially when a doctor’s note provides objective information about the employee’s abilities.  In the case, the employee suffered a brief epileptic seizure on his first day of work at the client facility… Continue reading Employers – Do Not Ignore Doctor’s Note re Employee’s Disability

More Employers Pay for Good Health Habits

As NPR reports, employers are increasingly seeking to cut healthcare costs by directly addressing the health habits of their employees. According to NPR, the range of programs implemented by employers ranges from circulating health risk questionnaires (meant to raise awareness of health issues) to offering sponsored fitness challenges, stress reduction classes and smoking cessation programs.  http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/08/10/158506049/yoga-on-commission-more-employers-pay-for-good-health-habits.

EEOC Confirms: Morbid Obesity is a Disability under the ADA

On July 24, 2012, in a press release detailing the settlement of a disability discrimination suit brought by the EEOC against BAE Systems Tactical Vehicle Systems, a senior EEOC attorney stated unequivocally that the ADA “protects morbidly obese employees and applicants from being subjected to discrimination because of their obesity.”  The EEOC attorney explained:  “So … Continue reading EEOC Confirms: Morbid Obesity is a Disability under the ADA

EEOC Issues Final Rule Revising Federal Sector Complaint Procedure

On July 24, 2012, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a final rule modifying certain aspects of the complaint process that federal employees and applicants use if they believe federal agencies have unlawfully discriminated against them. The final rule contains a number of revisions to 29 CFR Part 1614 (“Federal Sector Equal Employment… Continue reading EEOC Issues Final Rule Revising Federal Sector Complaint Procedure

Employer’s Mere Awareness of Policy’s “Adverse Consequences” on Protected Group Does Not Give Rise to Discrimination Claim

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently addressed the issue of what facts are necessary to show an employer has discriminatory intent. In Wood v. City of San Diego, a retired female employee of the City of San Diego, alleged that the surviving spouse benefit in the City’s retirement system violated Title VII because the benefit… Continue reading Employer’s Mere Awareness of Policy’s “Adverse Consequences” on Protected Group Does Not Give Rise to Discrimination Claim

Workers’ Compensation Coverage Not Available for Slip and Fall in Employer Owned Parking Lot

The Oregon Court of Appeals recently revisited the question of when an employee’s injury “arises out of employment” such that workers’ compensation coverage is allowed.   Generally, “A ‘compensable injury’ is an accidental injury… arising out of and in the course of employment requiring medical services or resulting in disability or death.” ORS 656.005(7)(a).  In Legacy… Continue reading Workers’ Compensation Coverage Not Available for Slip and Fall in Employer Owned Parking Lot

Cat’s Paw Liability – Cute and Furry? Not at All

Cat’s Paw liability arises when an employee plaintiff establishes that the person responsible for a discriminatory or retaliatory action, while personally lacking discriminatory intent, undertakes the adverse employment action in reliance on another decision-maker’s discriminatory animus.  As Judge Richard A. Posner of the 7th Circuit explained: In the fable of the cat’s paw (a fable… Continue reading Cat’s Paw Liability – Cute and Furry? Not at All

Reasonable Accommodation for Victims of Domestic Violence

Most employers are aware of the Oregon law that protects employees who are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking.  The law applies to employers with six or more employees and provides, among other benefits, that eligible employees may take leave to seek legal or law enforcement assistance, seek medical treatment, obtain counseling, and… Continue reading Reasonable Accommodation for Victims of Domestic Violence

EEOC Appellate Briefs Available On-line

On June 20, 2012, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that it has put its appellate and amicus briefs going back to 2000 on its external website.  The briefs, from the EEOC’s Appellate Services Division, represent litigation in the U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals in which the Commission was a party, or briefs… Continue reading EEOC Appellate Briefs Available On-line