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Firing

Manning’s big tip earns big penalty for Raleigh waiter

03/23/2012
A March evening started out great for a waiter at the Angus Barn restaurant. One of his customers was NFL quarterback and well-known big tipper Peyton Manning, who left a $200 tip. The waiter was so excited he posted Manning’s credit card slip in a photo on Facebook. Bad move …

Know the difference between whistle-blowing and an employee looking for an excuse to sue

03/14/2012
There’s whistle-blowing and then there’s setting up one’s employer for a lawsuit. Genuine whistle-blowers are protected from retaliation. Those looking to make a quick buck are not.

Beware overly broad drug policies, which could violate ADA rules about revealing a disability

03/14/2012
The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals has handed a significant victory to the EEOC, allowing the agency to continue to supervise settled cases. The impact: Employers should expect continued EEOC charges even after the ink is dry on their settlements.

Employee tried to comply? He may get unemployment

03/13/2012
The Court of Appeal of Florida has concluded that employees fired for poor attendance must have a chance to show they tried to comply with their employer’s attendance policies before they are denied unemployment compensation benefits.

Threatening behavior trumps employee’s disability claim

03/13/2012

Employees who are suffering from depression, anxiety or other psychological problems may be disabled, but that doesn’t mean they’re excused from following the rules. For example, employers don’t have to tolerate threats, even if the threats concern the employee’s disability.

Be flexible on deadlines after FMLA leave

03/09/2012
When employees take FMLA leave (or other time off related to a disability), make sure you adjust any work deadlines. Otherwise, you risk a retaliation claim.

Employees can’t hide behind FMLA to dodge legitimate discipline

03/08/2012
The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals has dismissed a lawsuit brought by a worker who claimed she was fired in retaliation for taking intermittent FMLA leave. The court ruled that she was fired for the most defensible of all reasons: She treated a customer badly.

Don’t expect access to employees’ past job records to prove poor performance

03/06/2012
If a fired employee sues your organization, alleging discrimination, you’ll probably want to argue that the real reason was the employee’s poor work perform­ance. Maybe you’ll want to claim that it was a mistake to hire the employee in the first place. Well, don’t expect the court to let you go on a fishing expedition into the employee’s past jobs.

Make sure employees understand the method you use to calculate FMLA leave

03/05/2012

Employers that don’t take the time and effort to understand the ins and outs of the FMLA do so at their peril. Courts are beginning to lose patience and have started assessing employers double damages for FMLA violations. Something as simple as not making sure employees understand what method you use to calculate FMLA leave entitlements can mean huge liabilities …

Seek expert legal help when dealing with NLRB

03/05/2012

Employers that find themselves in the cross hairs of the National Labor Relations Board should get expert legal help, especially if charged with unfair labor practices. That’s because once the NLRB concludes you fired employees for engaging in protected activity, it is very hard to argue against those employees’ eventual reinstatement.