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Ambiguous Offer of Judgment Cannot Support Attorney’s Fees Award, Georgia Court of Appeals Holds

An unaccepted offer of judgment that contains internal inconsistencies and ambiguities as to its scope is neither enforceable nor supports an award of attorney’s fees under Georgia’s Rule 68. Reversing a trial court’s $837,445 award of attorney’s fees to defendants, the Georgia Court of Appeals held the defendants’ offer of judgment could not be enforced...… Continue Reading
March 22, 2021

Seasonal Employee May Pursue Disability-Based Hostile Work Environment Claim, Court Rules

Reversing a district court’s grant of summary judgment, the Iowa Court of Appeals held an employee presented sufficient evidence for her disability-based hostile work environment claim to proceed to trial, despite the relatively short period of her employment. Munoz v. Adventure Lands of America, Inc., 2021 BL 37057 (Iowa Ct. App. Feb. 3, 2021). In...… Continue Reading
March 16, 2021

New Connecticut CROWN Act Bans Natural Hair Discrimination in the Workplace

Connecticut has joined the growing list of states that prohibit discrimination on the basis of traits historically associated with race, including hair. On March 10, 2021, Connecticut adopted legislation to ban natural hair discrimination in the workplace. In 2019, California was the first state to implement a law called the CROWN Act, an acronym for...… Continue Reading
March 15, 2021

Regular Attendance is Essential Even if Employer was Lenient in the Past, Fifth Circuit Holds

An employer’s past leniency in applying and enforcing its attendance policy did not contradict the employer’s later position that regular worksite attendance was required for employment, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has held. Weber v. BNSF Railway Co., No. 20-10295 (5th Cir. Feb. 24, 2021). This provides guidance for employers unsure whether...… Continue Reading
March 11, 2021

Employer Not Liable for Spouse’s COVID-19 Infection, California Court Rules

One year into the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. courts are wrestling with a growing number of new legal theories related to COVID-19.  Not surprisingly, California – the most populous state with some of the most employee friendly laws and courts – leads the way with the most COVID-19 employment lawsuits filed. See Jackson Lewis COVID-19 Employment...… Continue Reading
March 4, 2021

Texas Amended Rule 106 on Substitute Service: Have You Been Served?

Attempting to align the Texas legal system with current realities, effective December 31, 2020, Rule 106 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure is amended to allow substitute service by “social media, email, or other technology ….”  Indeed, any plaintiff faced with the previous options for substitute service (essentially, publication in a physical newspaper or...… Continue Reading
February 24, 2021

U.S. Supreme Court Denies Petition Seeking to Scrap McDonnell Douglas Burden-Shifting Analysis

Arguing the decades-old analysis is no longer helpful to anyone, Reginald Sprowl petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to scrap application of the McDonnell Douglas burden-shifting analysis in Title VII race discrimination and retaliation claims. On January 19, 2021, the Supreme Court rejected Sprowl’s petition and denied certiorari. Sprowl v. Mercedes-Benz U.S. Int’l, Inc., 815 Fed....… Continue Reading
February 22, 2021

2021 Is Here: Time for Your Annual Employment Law Compliance Checkup

The year 2020 is finally behind us!  We might not be able to breathe a sigh of relief just yet, but the beginning of a new year is still a good time to pause and review your labor and employment law compliance for the year.  COVID-19 is still with us and demanding our attention, but...… Continue Reading
February 9, 2021

School District Sanctioned for Failing to Preserve Evidence After Receiving EEOC Charge

A Maryland federal district court’s decision underscores the need to preserve evidence once notified of a potential lawsuit and the significant consequences for not doing so. In Eller v. Prince George’s Cty. Pub. Sch., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 234367 (D. Md. Dec. 11, 2020), an employment discrimination case, the court found the school district’s failure...… Continue Reading
February 3, 2021

Is One Enough? Employee Asks U.S. Supreme Court if Single Utterance of Racial Slur Creates Hostile Work Environment

Is a single utterance of an offensive racial slur – specifically the “N-word” – enough to create a hostile work environment under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964? A Black operating room aide in Dallas, Texas, has petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to decide the question. The petition references a circuit-split on...… Continue Reading
February 3, 2021

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