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BT Currents - Hot Topics in Employment Law

03 Jun Pregnancy accommodations could soon be required in Illinois

  Illinois employers will be required to provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant employees under new legislation that is awaiting action by the governor.   The Illinois legislature passed expansive amendments to the Illinois Human Rights Act that, effective January 1, 2015, will allow employees to request reasonable accommodations in the workplace for medical and other common conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth.   The changes will apply to employers of one or more employees, thus adding pregnancy to the existing Illinois Human Rights Act provision…

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20 Mar EEOC turns its focus to the impact of social media in employment litigation

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is concerned that efforts to access “private” social media communications through discovery in employment discrimination litigation could have “a chilling effect” on people seeking to “exercise their rights under federal anti-discrimination laws,” according to EEOC’s own summary of a recent meeting on the topic of social media in the workplace.   The EEOC held a Social Media Commission meeting at its headquarters in Washington, D.C. on March 12 to gather information about the use of social media in the…

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26 Dec Trends for 2014: A Death Knell for Unpaid Internships?

At least one major media organization – New York City-based magazine publisher Conde Nast – will ring in 2014 by saying goodbye to its unpaid internship program, a decision that has generated both cheers and jeers in news coverage.   Given the large amount of media attention that was focused on unpaid intern wage-and-hour lawsuits in 2013, it will be no surprise if more big-name employers – and perhaps some major educational institutions – make adjustments to the way they handle internship programs.   In…

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23 Dec Seventh Circuit: Failure to Conciliate is Not a Defense in EEOC Lawsuits

Employers who are defendants in actions brought by the EEOC in federal court cannot assert failure to conciliate as an affirmative defense, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has ruled. In so doing, the Seventh Circuit is the first federal circuit court of appeal to explicitly reject the failure-to-conciliate defense, the Court noted in its lengthy opinion released Friday. In determining a question of law brought up on an interlocutory appeal, the Seventh Circuit ruled in EEOC v. Mach Mining, LLC that…

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12 Nov OSHA Develops Plan to Publish Injury and Illness Data Online

The U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) contends that giving greater publicity to data on workplace injuries and illnesses will allow employers to distinguish themselves as workplaces that are committed to safety. That is one of the stated reasons behind OSHA’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses. If the new rule goes into effect after a period for notice and comment, then employers with 250 or more employees will be required on a quarterly basis to submit electronically…

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