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May 2016 Archives

Court dismisses counterclaim against whistleblower

A lot of Wisconsin companies require workers to sign confidentiality agreements when they hire them, but this does not prevent workers from reporting legal violations. This is what LifeWatch Services learned on May 9 when a U.S. magistrate dismissed its countersuit against a whistleblower for violating employment and nondisclosure agreements.

Changes in caregiver trends and FMLA

As many Wisconsin families have both parents working to make ends meet, the need for one of them to take time off to care for a sick child could have an adverse employment effect. In other cases, a single-parent household could be headed by either a mother or a father, and that party might need to make use of FMLA rights at times based on a child's medical needs. However, the increasing need for fathers to use this type of leave does not always equate to a cooperative response from an employer. Just over one-fourth of FMLA cases filed for problems related to child care are filed by men.

Lowe's settles disability discrimination claims

Many Wisconsin residents shop at Lowe's for their home improvement needs. They may be interested to learn that thousands of its former workers may receive compensation for wrongful termination. The company recently agreed to settle a slew of employment discrimination claims for $8.6 million. The lawsuit, filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The importance of employment laws for small-business employees

Employees in Wisconsin should be aware of employment laws so that they know whether an employer might be taking advantage of them. An employer might be doing so out of an effort to save money or because of ignorance of the law, but an employee may still file a lawsuit against an employer who violates those rights.

Disability and hostile work environments

Although most Wisconsin employees and supervisors understand that making fun of another employee's disability is never acceptable in the workplace, it can still occasionally happen. Supervisors especially should remember that it is their responsibility to stop any harassment against employees as soon as possible. Additionally, they are required to take steps that will prevent the harassment in the future.

Wage and hour compliance for telecommuting workers

Telecommuting is becoming more and more popular in Wisconsin and around the country. The number of Americans who telecommute has more than doubled since 2005, and this rate of growth is expected to accelerate in the years ahead as so-called Millennials become a more dominant part of the workforce. Allowing employees to work from home provides employers with a number of benefits, but it can sometimes be challenging for them to comply with federal hour and wage laws like the Fair Labor Standards Act.

New poster with easier-to-understand FMLA regulations

The U.S. Department of Labor has produced a new poster on the Family and Medical Leave Act for covered employers in Wisconsin and around the country to post in the workplace. Those employers are not required to use the new poster if they have an older one containing the same information on display, but they might want to because the information is presented in a way that is easier to read and understand.

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