Friday, November 20, 2009

WIRTW #104

This week’s review starts with a bunch of recent reports and statistics that shed some light on employment practices:

  • Paul Secunda, at the Workplace Prof Blog, discusses a recent General Accounting Office study that “many employers do not report workplace injuries and illnesses for fear of increasing their workers’ compensation costs or hurting their chances of winning contracts.”

  • The Washington DC Employment Law Update, on the EEOC’s Performance and Accountability Report FY 2009 [PDF]. What’s more interesting to me than the fact that the EEOC had its 2nd busiest year ever, is that it currently has a backlog of 85,768 pending charges. That number explains why you’re still waiting for a determination 6 or 9 months after you’ve submitted your position statement.

  • Mark Toth’s Manpower Employment Blawg shares the latest jury verdict research in employment cases. 2 key stats – employers have the lowest win rate in discrimination cases in a decade (39%), and the median settlement amount jumped 20% last year, to $90,000.

David Yamada’s Minding the Workplace shares his most recent research on workplace bullying. Meanwhile, Joel Stashenko, writing at the New York Law Journal, shares a recent New York State case concerning a workplace bullying club.

H1N1 continues to dominate the headlines. Bill Allen, at the Washington Labor & Employment Wire, digests some recently introduced paid sick leave legislation that is intended to help employees cope with H1N1, and Steve Bruce, at the BLR HR Daily Advisor, thinks that the ADA will limit some of the questions you can ask employees about their current health (including whether they have the swine flu).

This week also brings a couple of really good posts on social media: Molly DiBianca, at the Delaware Employment Law Blog, shares her recent presentation on social media and hiring, and Stephanie Thomas cautions that using social networking sites for recruiting could lead to disparate impact discrimination claims because of the demographics of their typical user.

In other background check news, comments on the legality of DNA tests for hiring decisions (using DNA for any employment decision is now illegal), and Nolo’s Employment Law Blog discusses whether bankruptcy is a permissible factor in a hiring decision.

In other news about genetic testing, the FMLA Blog has an excellent summary of the impact of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act on FMLA medical certifications.

The EFCA Report has a very thoughtful take on the constitutionality of the proposed Employee Free Choice Act.

Michael Maslanka’s Work Matters, on the propriety of zero tolerance work rules.

Christopher McKinney’s HR Lawyer’s Blog, on employment decisions based on conduct outside of the workplace.

Sindy Warren, at the Warren & Hays Blog, on family responsibility discrimination.

Melanie McClure, at Arkansas Employment Law, on pregnancy as a disability under the recently amended ADA.

Presented by Kohrman Jackson & Krantz, with offices in Cleveland and Columbus. For more information, contact Jon Hyman, a partner in our Labor & Employment group, at (216) 736-7226 or

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