Employment Law Blog

News, trends and analysis in employment law and HR

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Photo of Trish Leimbach
Jun 08 2017
Workers’ Comp  

5 Reasons Early Return-to-Work Leads to Better Results

Let’s put one workplace myth to rest right now: an injured employee who returns to work in a light duty position isn’t going to bust the morale of fellow co-workers. Period. Seeing their co-worker back on the road to recovery by performing lighter tasks and transitioning back to full duties will more than…

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Photo of Karen Davis
Jun 02 2017
Harassment & DiscriminationWage and Hour  

Layoffs, job restructuring, and wage freezes no excuse for unequal pay

A furniture manufacturing company blamed tough economic conditions as the reason for paying three female managers less than their male counterparts, but a federal appeals court didn’t buy it.

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Photo of Diane Buisman
May 30 2017
Harassment & Discrimination  

Federal courts split over sexual orientation discrimination

A recent string of federal appeals court cases regarding sexual orientation discrimination has shone a light on an area of open interpretation under federal law. Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, individuals are protected from discrimination based on sex, but the law doesn’t explicitly encompass protection based on sexual…

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Photo of Jodi Slavik
May 26 2017
HiringImmigration  

A glitch in the system: Are you using the correct Form I-9?

On April 6, 2017, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) disclosed on its “what’s new” feed that an early version of the new Form I-9 contained an internal technical error. Then on April 17, the agency alerted the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) that some HR professionals are inadvertently using that bad form.…

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Photo of Trish Leimbach
May 25 2017
Workers’ Comp  

Safety Violations Cost Washington Company More Than $642K

All the accident-free days in the world may not be enough to save you from costly fines for workplace safety violations. One Washington company found this out the hard way.

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Photo of Karen Davis
May 16 2017
Affirmative Action  

OFCCP announces significant financial settlements

Wrapping up some high-profile cases following affirmative action audits, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) recently announced three significant settlements, two of which were in the OFCCP’s Pacific Region:

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Photo of Kandis Sells
May 15 2017
Q&ALeave Laws  

Unmarried employee entitled to FMLA when girlfriend gives birth?

Q: A female employee requested two weeks off to be with her pregnant girlfriend when she gives birth. The employee is not married or living with this girlfriend, and the baby is not biologically hers. Of course we will give her the time off, but does it count as FMLA?

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Photo of Diane Buisman
May 15 2017
Harassment & DiscriminationTermination & Resignation  

Employer unlawfully discriminated against unmarried pregnant employee in Oregon

In a rare case, an unmarried teacher recently won a victory against her employer by applying Oregon’s law protecting individuals from discrimination based on marital status. The teacher worked at a Christian university, which required her to adhere to a certain moral standard. When she revealed that she was pregnant, unmarried, and living with her boyfriend, her employer gave her the options of ending her cohabitation, marrying the father of her child, or losing her job. When she declined the first two options, the university terminated her employment.

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Photo of Trish Leimbach
May 10 2017
Workers’ Comp  

10 Signs a Workers’ Comp Claim is Going to Cost You

1.    A claim is filed by a difficult employee If you have a difficult employee, chances are they are going to be a difficult injured employee. Be pro-active with clear performance expectations and deal with any behavior and performance challenges early. If a claim is filed, treat the worker the same as anyone else,…

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Photo of Diane Buisman
May 10 2017
Harassment & DiscriminationWage and Hour  

Internal complaints count as whistleblowing under Oregon law

Two employees complained to their supervisors about not getting paid overtime. In a groundbreaking decision from the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, these employees were protected from retaliation under Oregon law.

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