SCOTUS Decides FLSA Pick-Off Case

On April 16, the Supreme Court issued its opinion in Genesis Healthcare Corp. v. Symczyk . You may recall my previous coverage of this case as the "FLSA Pick-Off Case." In short, an employee filed a FLSA wage and hour claim intended to be a collective action. The defendant made a Rule...

U.S. High Court Hears Arguments on Proof of Title VII Retaliation Claims

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) A Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 retaliation claim must prove but-for causation, the attorney representing the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center (UTSW) argued before the U.S. Supreme Court April 24. ( University of Texas Southwestern Medical...

Third Circuit: President Obama’s NLRB Recess Appointments Unconstitutional

The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit today in a 2-1 decision invalidated a number of orders of the National Labor Relations Board in NLRB v. New Vista Nursing And Rehabilitation [ an enhanced version of this opinion is available to lexis.com subscribers ] , holding that the Recess...

U.S. Airways, Inc. v. McCutchen: SCOTUS Says Enforcement of ERISA Plan Terms Is Not “Inequitable”

by Sara E. Hauptfuehrer Employer-sponsored group heath plans typically allow reimbursement to the plan for benefits paid in connection with injuries sustained as a result the tortious conduct of a third party. That right of reimbursement arises when the injured plan participant obtains a recovery...

High Court Agrees to Hear Appeal of NLRB Quorum Dispute

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) The U.S. Supreme Court on June 24 agreed to decide whether President Obama's "recess" appointments of three members to the National Labor Relations Board in 2012 should be upheld ( National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning, a Division of the Noel...

Split U.S. High Court Finds Higher Standard for Title VII Retaliation Claims

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) Retaliation claims filed under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 must prove but-for causation, a split U.S. Supreme Court ruled June 24, rejecting the lessened causation test outlined in 42 U.S. Code Section 2000e-2(m) [ an annotated version of this statute...

Supreme Court Issues Another Strong Decision Upholding Class Waivers in Arbitration Agreements

Today the United States Supreme Court issued its opinion in American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant [ an enhanced version of this opinion is available to lexis.com subscribers ], holding that courts may not invalidate a contractual waiver of class arbitration simply because the plaintiff's...

Vance v. Ball St. Narrows Employer Liability for Harassment

In its prologue to yesterday's Supreme Court opinion in Vance v. Ball. St. Univ. [pdf] [ an enhanced version of this opinion is available to lexis.com subscribers ], Justice Alito, writing for the five-member majority, frames the importance of the issue facing the Court: Under Title VII, an...

VanDeusen on Vance v. Ball State University: Supreme Court Defines "Supervisor" In Title VII Harassment Cases

Excerpt: In Vance v. Ball State University [ an enhanced version of this opinion is available to lexis.com subscribers ], the Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, resolved an issue that has split the federal appellate courts in harassment cases: who is a "supervisor" under Title VII of the...

U.S. High Court Hears Arguments in Government Worker’s Age Bias Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) The U.S. Congress never intended, when it extended age bias administrative and judicial procedures and remedies to government employees, to permit state and municipal workers to “frustrate this regime or bypass it entirely using the more general remedies...

U.S. Supreme Court Dismisses Government Worker’s Age Bias Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court this morning in a per curiam , one-sentence decision dismissed the appeal of a government worker’s age discrimination case “as improvidently granted” ( Lisa Madigan, et al. v. Harvey Levin , No. 12-872, U.S. Sup.; See October 2013, Page...

Divided U.S. Supreme Court Dismisses Union, Employer Agreement Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) Less than a month after hearing oral arguments, a split U.S. Supreme Court this morning dismissed the appeal of a suit over an agreement between an employer and union regarding access to the premises, employee information, monetary support for a ballot initiative...

U.S. Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in NLRB Quorum Appeal

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. president has the power to fill vacancies on the National Labor Relations Board during both inter-session and intra-session recesses, the U.S. solicitor general told the U.S. Supreme Court this morning during arguments in a closely watched appeal ( National Labor Relations...

The Joy of SOX: What Employee Activity Is "Protected"?

Now that the Supreme Court has decided that the retaliation provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act apply, not only to employees of publicly-held companies, but also to employees of contractors who do work for publicly-held companies , I thought it might be helpful to review exactly what type of activity...

Supreme Court Holds Certain Severance Payments Are Taxable Wages for FICA Purposes

On March 25, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in United States v. Quality Stores, Inc. , 572 U.S. ___ (2014), No. 12-1408 [ an enhanced version of this opinion is available to lexis.com subscribers ], that severance payments made to employees involuntarily terminated in connection with Quality Stores’...

U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Appeal on EEOC’s Duty to Conciliate

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) The U.S. Supreme Court this morning granted a petition for writ of certiorari in an appeal of a Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals decision finding that an alleged failure to conciliate is not an affirmative defense to the merits of a discrimination suit ...

Are Post-Work Security Checks Compensable? #SCOTUS and Integrity Staffing Solutions v. Busk

Yesterday, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in its first employment law case of this term, Integrity Staffing Solutions v. Busk . To wage-and-hour geeks (like me), this case presents an interesting issue under the Fair Labor Standards Act: whether the FLSA entitles hourly employees to be paid...

2014-15 SCOTUS Employment Law Preview

Our beloved United States Supreme Court (aka SCOTUS) kicked off the new season last week (okay, technically they entered a few orders before that). Here are the labor and employment law issues currently on their docket (case name links to SCOTUSblog page with all filings to date): Notice Requirements...

Will SCOTUS Review Same-Sex Marriage Now?

You may recall that in early October the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review decisions from U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Fourth, Seventh, and Tenth circuits* that struck down same-sex marriage bans. At that time, every federal appellate court facing the issue — in addition to these three...

Sixth Circuit Upholds Same-Sex Marriage Bans

Ladies and gentlemen . . . we have a circuit split. Several federal court decisions have struck down same-sex marriage bans in states across our country. Yesterday, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld same-sex marriage prohibition as constitutional. You can read the opinion here [ an enhanced version...

Klein and Sharman on King v. Burwell: Silence Will Likely Equal Deference in King v. Burwell

by Elise Klein and Joelle Sharman On November 7, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari to answer the following question: whether the Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") may promulgate regulations to extend tax-credit subsidies to coverage purchased through Exchanges established by...

U.S. Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in Pregnancy Bias Suit

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) United Parcel Service Inc. (UPS) violated the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) when it refused to accommodate an employee’s lifting restrictions that were caused by her pregnancy even though it provided accommodations for other employees with lifting...

U.S. Supreme Court Hears Arguments on EEOC’s Duty to Conciliate

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) Since the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, must first attempt to resolve a claim of bias against a private employer through conciliation before filing suit, the court may conduct a “modest inquiry”...

SCOTUS on Whistleblowers and Regulations

Earlier this week, the Supreme Court issued its opinion in DHS v. MacLean [lexis.com subscribers may access Supreme Court briefs and an enhanced opinion for this case]. In 2003 (sometimes these case take a while to unfold!), a federal air marshal received a text that TSA was " cancelling all...

SCOTUS Kills Yard-Man

When you were growing up, did you ever have a teacher return an assignment and tell you everything you did wrong... but not give you the right answer? Instead, you were just supposed to try again and figure it out for yourself? That's pretty much what Justice Thomas just did to the 6th Circuit. ...