The Legal Line®

EEOC Publishes Proposed Religious Discrimination Guidance for Public Comment

December 10, 2020

Just before Thanksgiving, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) published proposed new guidance regarding religious discrimination in the workplace.  The 100+ page guidance explains an employer’s obligations regarding religion discrimination mostly by giving common examples of how religion and workplace rules tend to collide and if and how the scenarios violate the law.  In fact, … Read more

Have a System to Track Remote Work and Pay for All Hours says U.S. DOL in New Field Assistance Bulletin on Telework

September 22, 2020

The U.S. Department of Labor recently issued new guidance regarding an employer’s obligation to track hours of employees who are teleworking. Briefly, the new guidance clarifies that an employer has an obligation to exercise reasonable diligence to track the actual hours worked of employees who are working remotely away from a physical worksite. While the … Read more

EEOC Issues Guidance Regarding Accommodating Opioid-Related Disabilities

September 16, 2020

Opioid use has been on the rise in recent years. Many people became addicted after doctors prescribed opioid medications like oxycodone for pain control after a surgery or for a chronic injury. But because of their addictive nature, people began abusing these drugs, in many cases substituting illegal heroin (also an opioid) in their place. … Read more

DOL Says Declining Job Because of COVID Safety Concerns Does not Disqualify for Federal Unemployment but Not Being Able to Get a Job Because Businesses are Not Hiring Due to COVID Does

July 30, 2020

After months of being closed under applicable state orders, many businesses have identified enhanced Federal unemployment benefits as one of the obstacles to reopening during the pandemic. Some businesses say that their employees do not want to return because they are earning more in unemployment benefits than they would if they were working. On July … Read more

U.S. DOL Publishes OSHA-Related COVID FAQ’s and Recommends Cloth Masks

July 10, 2020

This week, the DOL issued new COVID-19 specific FAQ’s intended to guide employers about the steps they can take during the pandemic to comply with the Occupational Health and Safety Act (“OSHA”). The FAQ’s address a variety of important topics, including cleaning and disinfecting protocols, training, and handwashing facilities. The FAQ’s also address dealing with … Read more

DOL Clarifies when Closed Summer Camps Trigger COVID Leave Rights

June 29, 2020

Late last week, the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued a new Opinion Letter No. 2020-4, clarifying that the inability to send one’s child to a summer camp closed because of COVID-19 may well entitle that employee to leave under the Family First Coronavirus Act (“FFCRA”). This clarification is important because, unlike schools or day … Read more

EEOC Clarifies that Employers Should Not Screen for COVID19 Antibodies

June 17, 2020

The EEOC clarified today that while employers may screen employees for active cases of COVID19, employer may not screen employee for COVID19 antibodies as a precondition for returning to the workplace. The EEOC’s position in part relies on the CDC’s recent guidance providing that antibody test results should not be used in making decisions in … Read more

USSC Says Title VII Protects Against Sexual Orientation and Transgender Discrimination

June 15, 2020

In a historic 6-3 decision entitled Bostock v. Clayton County, the United States Supreme Court finally answered the much-debated question whether Title VII prohibits an employer from discriminating against an employee because of sexual orientation and/or gender identity – the answer is a resounding “yes.” In ruling that an employer cannot fire an employee for … Read more