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Employment Law

Extending probation doesn’t count as adverse action

Employees who sue for discrimination must show they suffered an adverse employment action. But that action must be substantial. An extended probationary period usually isn’t enough.

Personality traits are not disabilities under the ADA

Asking a worker to undergo a psychological exam to determine his fitness for work isn’t the same as regarding him as disabled under the ADA.

Men are responding to #MeToo: Backlash may open door to more lawsuits

For almost two years now, the #MeToo social media movement has helped bring down powerful men accused of sexual harassment. But #MeToo has also triggered a backlash of sorts, mainly from men who claim they have been falsely targeted.

Supervisor’s name-calling enough for lawsuit

When a supervisor regularly calls employees derogatory names, that may be enough to move a discrimination lawsuit forward. It’s one reason you should warn all managers and executives that they must treat all subordinates with respect.

DOL opinion letters address FMLA, FLSA, CCPA

The Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division recently issued three opinion letters addressing employer-submitted questions about the FMLA, the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Consumer Credit Protection Act.

Docking manager’s pay can end exemption

While certain types of deductions are allowed, be aware time- or work-based deductions could destroy a manager’s exempt status.

Firing for vacation during FMLA? Hit ‘pause’

Even if it appears that an employee is misusing his FMLA leave, you must make discipline or termination decisions based on a rational review of the facts, including the doctor’s certification.

Study: Workplace bullying also harms safety, health

Bullying bosses can crush morale. But a new Portland State University study says employees’ responses can lead to more work accidents and injuries.

Don’t withhold info needed to apply for promotion

If you often promote workers from within, make sure everyone has a chance to apply. If you withhold information or otherwise thwart efforts to apply, a disappointed employee can sue if she has reason to believe you had some discriminatory reason to prevent her from being promoted.

Can telecommuters claim hostile environment?

Don’t assume that an employee who works from home can’t launch a hostile work environment claim. Prevailing in such a lawsuit doesn’t depend solely on demonstrating a pattern of direct interpersonal hostility. Other factors count, too.