DHS New Fee Schedule and Other Changes Proposal (US)

The Proposed Rule

On November 14, 2019, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a notice of a proposed rule that will considerably alter the fees associated with US filings and immigration benefits. The proposal also includes significant changes to some of the immigration forms published by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). DHS originally announced that it would accept public comments on the proposal for 30 days after publication; however, later extended the comment period until December 30, 2019. After comments are reviewed, a final rule will be published, which may differ from the original proposal. Continue Reading

NLRB Issues New Rules and Several Key Precedent-Changing Decisions (US)

The National Labor Relations Board issued a slew of precedent-changing decisions this month, as well as significant changes to its rules and regulations. These new rules and decisions will change labor law in several key ways for both union and non-union employers, including during union elections, during internal investigations, when employees seek to use work email to discuss unions or group working conditions, and during CBA negotiations. Continue Reading

EEOC Withdraws Policy Against Mandatory Arbitration of Workplace Discrimination Claims (US)

SignatureOn December 17, 2019, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) rescinded its 22-year-old policy statement disapproving of mandatory employment arbitration agreements for workplace bias claims.  The agency’s 2-1 decision to retract this policy was in direct response to numerous U.S. Supreme Court rulings that support the use of such agreements.  Continue Reading

Dealing with “attitude” at work, Part 4 – the end of the road (UK)

You have tried to counsel, to mediate and to make every adjustment you possibly can, but in the end you have run into a single insurmountable fact about your employee with the attitude – you just can’t bear him any longer. He is the dragging anchor of your otherwise happy little ship and must be cut loose for everyone’s benefit, potentially including his own.

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Genetic Mutation Is Not A Disability under the ADA, Says Ohio Federal Court (US)

ADA Americans with Disabilities ActIn Darby v. Childvine, a recent decision from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, the Court considered whether a genetic mutation can constitute a “disability” as that term is defined under the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”).

In that case, the employer terminated the plaintiff/then-employee Sherryl Darby two weeks after she underwent surgery for a double mastectomy.  Darby sued Childvine, claiming that she had breast cancer, was therefore disabled under the ADA, and that its termination of her employment violated the ADA.  Childvine moved to dismiss her complaint, arguing that a diagnosis of breast cancer does not automatically mean that the employee is substantially limited in a major life activity – which is, in part, how the ADA defines a disability.  In response, Darby amended her complaint, alleging that her cancer diagnosis meant that she was substantially limited in normal cell growth, which, she alleged, is a major life activity. Continue Reading

Dealing with “attitude” at work, Part 3 – helping staff help themselves (UK)

In the first two posts in this series, I looked at the law around workplace attitudes which might stem from some form of disability. But what if your employee is fit and well in all respects bar being exceptionally painful to work with?

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Title VII Pay Bias Claims Do Not Require Evidence of Unequal Pay for Equal Work (US)

Equal PayOn December 6, 2019, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (which hears appeals from federal district courts located in Connecticut, New York, and Vermont) unanimously held that employees can allege gender-based pay discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act even if they cannot show that a member of the opposite sex is paid more for equal work.  This ruling will make it easier for employees in the Second Circuit to bring claims alleging discriminatory compensation practices.  Continue Reading

Dealing with “attitude” at work, Part 2 – justifying disciplinary action (UK)

In my post last week, I considered the extent of an employer’s duty to make reasonable adjustments to accommodate an employee whose difficult workplace attitude is alleged to have its origins in a disability. However, there is another angle to this question which the employer must also bear in mind.

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H-1B Cap Registration: USCIS Says It’s On For 2020 (US)

On December 6, 2019, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it has completed pilot testing and is implementing the long-anticipated electronic registration tool for the next H-1B lottery of fiscal year (FY) 2021 H-1B visas. In its announcement, USCIS indicated that the initial H-1B cap registration period will run from March 1, 2020 through March 20, 2020, and selected cases may be submitted starting April 1. Previously, on Nov. 8, 2019, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a final rule establishing a $10 fee for each H-1B registration submitted by petitioners. Continue Reading

ELW Contributors Dan Pasternak and Melissa Legault named National Law Review “Go-To Thought Leaders”

Congratulations to Squire Patton Boggs labor and employment attorneys and long-time Employment Law Worldview contributors Dan Pasternak and Melissa Legault, both of our Phoenix, Arizona office, for being selected by the National Law Review (NLR) as 2019 “Go-To Thought Leaders” for their consistent coverage of emerging employment and labor law issues.  The award spotlights 75 exceptional legal authors selected from a pool of more than 100,000 news articles published in 2019.  This is the second year the NLR editors formally recognized the unique talents of less than 1% of the publication’s 15,000 thought leaders in a wide array of legal practices. Continue Reading