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Terminations

Layoffs and union contracts: When seniority collides with disability, seniority prevails

08/06/2018
When conducting layoffs, some employers give preference to more experienced workers, letting them keep their jobs while less senior workers must go. Disabled employees who get bumped may claim they should have been given preference, keeping their jobs as a reasonable accommodation.

Reorganization can justify termination decision

08/06/2018
Courts are naturally suspicious when employees who have filed lawsuits end up getting fired. But when an employer can explain that someone lost her job because of a valid business reason, courts seldom second-guess that decision.

Home Depot could pay for mishandled firing

08/02/2018
Maurice Rucker, a 60-year-old black man, was a long-time employee at a Home Depot store in Albany, N.Y. He doesn’t work there anymore. His response to a customer’s racist rant got him fired.

Resist temptation to rubber-stamp terminations

08/01/2018
Don’t just automatically approve a manager’s recommended discipline. Always conduct an independent investigation to verify that the manager is being fair and reasonable.

When planning layoffs, conduct audit to ensure there’s no age discrimination

08/01/2018
Calculate the average age of the workers you plan to retain and compare it to the workers you plan to terminate.

Worker who quit wants old job back? Too bad

08/01/2018
Sometimes, workers quit without warning. Then, after cooling off, they may reconsider and ask to come back—in effect, “unresigning.” If you have already documented the original resignation, you don’t have to take the worker back and you generally won’t face liability for an adverse employment action.

The First Amendment, patronage and political firing

07/24/2018
Public employers that fire workers following a controversial election must show that they would have fired the worker anyway.

Public-policy exception means at-will status doesn’t always apply

07/10/2018
A federal court interpreting Pennsylvania law has concluded that firing a worker for calling in a complaint to OSHA provides protection under the public-policy exception.

Gov’t employees enjoy free speech protection

07/10/2018
Government employees have more protection from termination than most private-sector workers do. Example: They have the right to comment on matters of public concern without being discharged for doing so.

So you discover an employee is job hunting—Now what?

07/01/2018
Say you’re searching an online résumé database and spot the résumé of one of your best employees. You wonder what to do with that new information. The answer: Tailor your approach to that employee, the reason he or she is searching and whether you actually want to retain the person …