Mealey's Employment

  • July 19, 2024

    Retailer Settles EEOC Suit Over Employee’s COVID-19 Vaccine Religious Beliefs

    PENSACOLA, Fla. — A furniture retailer will pay $110,000 to end a lawsuit by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that accused the employer of failing to accommodate an employee’s request for religious exemption from a COVID-19 vaccine mandate and then fired her for failure to be vaccinated, according to a consent decree signed by a federal judge in Florida on July 18.

  • July 18, 2024

    9th Circuit: Buddhist Temple Apprentice Falls Under Ministerial Exception

    PASADENA, Calif. — A former work practice apprentice (WPA) at a California Buddhist temple, San Francisco Zen Center Inc., who received room and board and a small stipend in exchange for performing work duties as well as participating in meditations and performing ceremonial tasks fell with the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution’s ministerial exception as he “had a ‘role in . . . carrying out [the Center’s] mission,’” a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled July 17, affirming a summary judgment ruling for the center in the man’s disability discrimination case.

  • July 18, 2024

    Man, CVS Settle Claims Employment Interview Included Undisclosed AI Lie Detector

    BOSTON — A man who claims that artificial intelligence tools used during a job interview constitute an unlawful lie detector test settled his individual state law claims against two CVS Health Corp. entities, according to a July 17 notice filed in Massachusetts federal court.

  • July 17, 2024

    Franchisee Seeks Rehearing After Manager’s Disability Bias Claims Reinstated

    ST. PAUL, Minn. — The operator of a number of Hardee’s restaurants in the Midwest seeks a rehearing en banc after a former manager’s disability bias and Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) claims were reinstated by a split panel and asks for the rejection of a new test employed by the panel majority for the pretext prong of the McDonnell-Douglas Corp. v. Green framework that was referred to in the dissenting opinion as an “intertwinement test.”

  • July 17, 2024

    $2.5 Million Walmart COVID-19 Screening Settlement Approved

    PHOENIX — A federal judge in Arizona granted final approval of a $2.5 million settlement to be paid by Walmart Inc. and Wal-Mart Associates Inc. (together, Walmart) to end a class complaint seeking compensation under Arizona law for time spent undergoing mandatory COVID-19 screening before each shift.

  • July 16, 2024

    Portions Of Man’s AI Employment Discrimination Case Survive Dismissal

    SAN FRANCISCO — A company that makes an artificial intelligence hiring tool available to employers can be liable under agency theory, and distinguishing between AI hiring and human decision makers could gut anti-discrimination laws and leave no one liable, a federal judge in California said in denying in part a motion to dismiss a man’s case.

  • July 16, 2024

    Washington Supreme Court: Equitable Tolling Applies To Nurse Class’s Wage Claims

    OLYMPIA, Wash. — A class lawsuit on behalf of nurses seeking unpaid wages after a complaint by their union attempting to recoup the pay was dismissed for lack of associational standing may proceed even though the statute of limitations has passed as equitable tolling applies, a divided Washington Supreme Court ruled.

  • July 16, 2024

    EEOC Supports Rehearing En Banc Request After Race Bias Ruling For Uber

    SAN FRANCISCO — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in considering the appeal of putative class racial bias claims by an Uber Technologies Inc. driver correctly recognized that no one framework “‘is mandatory at the pleading stage’ of a discrimination lawsuit” but then erred when it proceeded to apply “a notably higher standard to” the driver’s allegations, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission argues in a July 15 amicus curiae brief supporting the driver’s petition for rehearing en banc.

  • July 16, 2024

    Mass. Panel Reverses Board Ruling Denying Reimbursement To Workers’ Comp Insurer

    BOSTON — A Massachusetts appellate court reversed a review board’s decision upholding the denial of a now-insolvent insurer’s claim for ongoing reimbursements from the Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Trust Fund, finding that though the insurer was in a run-off period and not assessing premiums, the exception limiting reimbursements to insurers paying assessments into the fund is inapplicable to insurers in run-off.

  • July 15, 2024

    5th Circuit Vacates NLRB Misconduct Ruling For Exceeding Scope Of Remand

    NEW ORLEANS — The National Labor Relations Board exceeded the scope of a remand and violated an employer’s due-process rights when it sought remand of a case concerning employee misconduct during activity protected by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) to apply the new interpretation in General Motors LLC and instead used the proceeding to overrule that interpretation, a Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled.

  • July 15, 2024

    Dollar General To Pay $12M, Make Nationwide Safety Investments Under DOL Pact

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Dollar General Corp. and its retail subsidiaries will pay $12 million in penalties and make safety changes as part of its corporate-wide settlement presented to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission (OSHRC).

  • July 15, 2024

    2 Disney Employees File Class Suit Over Scrapped Relocation Plans

    LOS ANGELES — The Walt Disney Corp. told certain California workers that their jobs would be relocated to a new campus in Orlando, Fla., and that they could move or lose their jobs and then later scrapped the plans after some workers moved, two of the impacted workers allege in a putative class complaint seeking damages filed in a California court.

  • July 12, 2024

    Amazon’s $7.2M Global Security Screening Pay Settlement Approved

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A federal judge in Kentucky granted final approval of a more than $4.3 million settlement to be paid by Amazon.com Inc. and related parties to end the second of two class complaints accusing the online retailer of failing to pay workers at its Pennsylvania warehouses for time spent undergoing mandatory security screenings; this amount brings the total global settlement to end the two cases to $7,205,837.

  • July 12, 2024

    6th Circuit Upholds Arbitration Determination In Pilots’ Vaccine Mandate Case

    CINCINNATI — Religious and disability bias claims by Kalitta Air LLC pilots who filed a putative class complaint challenging their employer’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate required interpretation of the collective bargaining agreement’s terms, a Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled, affirming the trial court’s ruling that the claims must go through arbitration first as minor disputes pursuant to the Railway Labor Act (RLA).

  • July 12, 2024

    6th Circuit Won’t Rehear Case Over Multiemployer Funds’ Attempt To Force Audit

    CINCINNATI — Following an unpublished panel decision with partial dissent that affirmed a ruling against multiemployer fringe benefit trust funds seeking an audit under the Labor Management Relations Act (LMRA) and the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals denied a petition for rehearing en banc.

  • July 11, 2024

    Judge Dismisses Former Twitter Employees’ ERISA Suit For Severance Benefits

    SAN FRANCISCO — Ruling that the plaintiffs didn’t prove that a severance plan is governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, a California federal judge granted dismissal of a putative class complaint in which former Twitter employees sought more than $500 million in benefits.

  • July 11, 2024

    Split 9th Circuit: Equal Rights Protections Include U.S. Citizenship Bias

    HONOLULU — Equal rights protections in 42 U.S. Code Section 1981 prohibit citizenship or alienage discrimination of U.S. citizens in hiring, a divided Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled, reversing a trial court’s dismissal of putative class discrimination claims by a naturalized U.S. citizen and creating a split with the Fifth Circuit’s 1986 decision in Chaiffetz v. Robertson Research Holding, Ltd.

  • July 11, 2024

    Rehearing Sought After 9th Circuit Issues Class Scope Ambiguity Tolling Opinion

    SAN FRANCISCO — Union Pacific Railroad Co. filed a petition for rehearing or rehearing en banc after a Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled while answering a question that it stated was one of first impression that where a class definition is narrowed, any dispute or ambiguity regarding the applicability to certain plaintiffs “should be resolved in favor of tolling so that bystander members of the class need not rush to file separate actions to protect their rights.”

  • July 10, 2024

    Company Not Required Under ADA To Provide Remote Work Option To Freight Dispatcher

    MACON, Ga. — A Georgia federal court on July 9 granted the summary judgment motion of a lawn products company in an action by a former employee alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in failing to provide her with a reasonable accommodation after she was stricken with a chronic respiratory condition that ensued after a bout of COVID-19, ruling that her position undisputedly required on-site work and that the company was not required to provide a remote-work accommodation.

  • July 10, 2024

    Company Not Required Under ADA To Provide Remote Work Option To Freight Dispatcher

    MACON, Ga. — A Georgia federal court on July 9 granted the summary judgment motion of a lawn products company in an action by a former employee alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in failing to provide her with a reasonable accommodation after she was stricken with a chronic respiratory condition that ensued after a bout of COVID-19, ruling that her position undisputedly required on-site work and that the company was not required to provide a remote-work accommodation.

  • July 10, 2024

    California Judge OKs Microsoft’s $14.4M Settlement Of Agency’s Leave Bias Suit

    SAN JOSE, Calif. — Microsoft Corp. will pay $14,425,000 to end a complaint by the California Civil Rights Department (CRD) accusing the company of retaliation and discrimination against workers based on their use of protected leave, including parental, disability, pregnancy and family care taking leave, according to a July 9 order by a California judge granting entry of consent decree.

  • July 10, 2024

    6th Circuit Partially Vacates Dismissal Of Cleaning Agent-Related Disability Claims

    CINCINNATI — A former Shelby County, Tenn., deputy jailer may proceed with some of her disability claims related to medical reactions she experienced to a cleaning agent initially used in 2013 and continuing past 2020 when the use of the cleaner increased due to the coronavirus pandemic, a Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled in a July 9 unpublished order.

  • July 10, 2024

    UPS Granted Summary Judgment In Workers’ ‘Dead End’ Jobs Suit

    OAKLAND, Calif. — A federal judge in California granted summary judgment to United Parcel Service Inc. (UPS) in a case by three female workers who alleged that they were relegated to work in the back and “dead end” job opportunities due to their gender, age and disabilities, finding in part that the workers were not “diligent in their discovery” and failed to present sufficient evidence of their claims.

  • July 09, 2024

    Neb. High Court Upholds Waiting Time Penalty, Attorney Fees In Workers’ Comp Case

    LINCOLN, Neb. — A Whole Foods Market Inc. employee who was injured when she fell while working was properly awarded attorney fees and a waiting time penalty after the employer refused to pay permanent partial disability (PPD) benefits even though the worker was actually entitled to temporary total disability (TTD) benefits as the employer was aware there “some form of disability as a result of a work accident,” the Nebraska Supreme Court ruled, upholding a decision by the state’s Workers’ Compensation Court.

  • July 09, 2024

    Snapchat Agrees To $15M Gender Bias Settlement With California Agency

    LOS ANGELES — Snap Inc., which created Snapchat, will pay $15 million to end a complaint by the California Civil Rights Department (CRD) alleging discrimination, harassment and retaliation against female employees, according to a joint stipulation for entry of consent decree filed in a California court.