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April 2011 Archives

Company ordered to pay mentally disabled workers under the FLSA

According to the United States Department of Labor a federal judge recently ordered a food manufacturing company to pay $1.76 million to former workers who are mentally disabled for violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act. The order was a part of a partial summary judgment order that alleged the company abused and underpaid multiple mentally disabled employees who worked at a company plant.

Social Security Disability with Fibromyalgia

Part of the analysis to determine eligibility for disability benefits by the Social Security Administration requires proof a "medically determinable impairment". Simply put, there must be medical documentation to show that an individual has an actual medical condition, a diagnosis, and has received some form of treatment for that condition. Generally, we look for clinical testing and objective evidence such as bloodwork, MRIs, X-rays and easily observed symptoms. Subjective complaints such as pain as then considered secondary to the medical documents.

Father who lost daughter wants to expand FMLA to include grieving period

A father from Arizona who lost his daughter when she was age 18 wants to expand the Family Medical Leave Act to include a grieving period to mourn the loss of an immediate family member. The Arizona father's effort is combined with the effort of Illinois father who lost two infants within the time period of 18 months. The pair of fathers has started an online petition to amend the FMLA that has 11,000 supporters.

Top three labor law trends including Wage and Hour laws

There are three employment law trends that employers are following. The three labor law areas are Wage and Hour laws; sexual orientation, religious and disability discrimination and violence and bullying. Wage and Hour law violations remain the number one area of violation.

Definition of disability expanded under amendment to ADA

People with impairments who previously were not protected and not offered a reasonable accommodation in their workplace may find that they meet the new definition under an amendment to the Americans with Disabilities Act. New regulations issued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission which executes the Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act will expand the definition of disability.

Man claims he was wrongfully fired by Comcast for taking long-term disability leave

A man who underwent back surgery and wanted to use his long-term disability benefits to fully recover from his operation has filed a wrongful termination suit against Comcast because the company threatened to fire the man if he used the full extent of his disability benefits. Feeling pressured to return to work because of incessant pressure from his employer, the man did not get a chance to fully use his long-term disability benefits and recover from his operation.

Trying to care for sick children while working

For working parents, a sick child can throw their entire day off and often parents are put in the position of choosing between their work and their child's health. While the Family Medical Leave Act covers workers when they have a serious health condition, need to care for a seriously ill family member or care for a new born child, the federal law does not provide protected leave time to care for sick children.

A brief look at SSDI's Ticket to Work program

Over the last year around 8.2 million people collected disability benefits through the Social Security Disability Income program. The total number of benefits collected was around $115 billion. The number of people receiving benefits has increased over the last ten years from 5 million. The increase in the number of people who receive Social Security Disability benefits is attributed to the harsh economy and the rising number of baby boomers who are no longer able to work because of disability.

Woman's therapy kangaroo challenged under ADA

A woman from Oklahoma who suffers from depression has found relief from her condition in the form of a kangaroo. The kangaroo is the woman's therapy pet, and the woman's therapist has even certified the kangaroo as a therapy pet under the Americans with Disabilities Act. However, the city where the woman lives believes the kangaroo presents a public safety risk and the woman is seeking an exemption from the city council to keep her unique therapy pet.

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