January 30

FMLA and ADA

A recent Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals case analyzes claims brought under the FMLA and ADA.  The case, Smothers v. Solvay Chemicals, Inc., issued on Tuesday, January 21, 2014, involved the claims Steven Smothers made against his employer Solvay Chemical, Inc. (“Solvay”). This case, like many employment discrimination cases, turned on the issue of pretext..

December 6

Medical Marijuana

An employee that uses medical marijuana can be lawfully terminated if the employee’s marijuana use violates the employer’s drug-free workplace policy. In Curry v. MillerCoors, Inc., the Court rejected the employee’s claim that his employer discriminated against him on the basis of his disability when it discharged him for testing positive for marijuana. Curry v..

December 5

Proving Pretext

Proving pretext means offering evidence that the defendant’s proffered reason taking the adverse employment action is false. In other words, the employer’s proffered reason is a phony one to cover up the employer’s discriminatory intent. Unless a plaintiff has direct evidence of discrimination, the court will analyze a Title VII claim under the McDonnell Douglas.

December 4

Lawful Activities Statute

Colorado’s lawful activities statute reflects a legislative attempt to balance an employee’s right to engage in lawful activity away from work with an employer’s legitimate business interests and needs. To that end, the statute protects a broad range of off-the-job employee behavior by making it illegal for employers to terminate employees for lawful off-the-job activity..

December 4

Proving Discrimination

Proving discrimination is difficult. Courts require a plaintiff to come forward with strong evidence of discriminatory intent to even get to a jury trial. Many cases are dismissed by the court on summary judgment. The Tenth Circuit’s opinion in Conroy v. Vilsack is a good example. Laura Conroy filed a Title VII lawsuit against her.

December 4

Sexual Harrassment

Notice of sexual harassment must be provided to the employer in order to bring a claim with rare exception.  The 10th Circuit recently addressed the issue of whether notice was provided in Debord v. Mercy Health System of Kansas. Sara Debord filed suit against Mercy Health Services of Kansas for sexual harassment and retaliation in.

December 3

Second-Generation Sexism

Second-generation sexism or gender bias is term that has been coined to describe the current phenomena of sexism.  Studies show that sexism is prevalent in the workplace but it usually is not be as blatant as it was in the past. Dr. Susan Madsen, a professor of management at Utah Valley University’s Woodbury School of.

November 19

Pregancy Discrimination Act

Employment discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions is prohibited by federal law (Title VII), which applies to employers with 15 or more employees. Even if you work for a company with less than 15 employees, you might still be protected against pregnancy discrimination under Colorado’s anti-discrimination law. The Pregnancy Discrimination.

November 19

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act, a Senate bill that passed With a vote of 61-30, would prohibit workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. On November 7, 2013 the Senate approved legislation outlawing workplace discrimination against gay, bisexual and transgender Americans, demonstrating the nation’s quickly evolving attitude toward gay rights nearly two.

October 7

SEPARATION AND RELEASE AGREEMENTS

What is a Separation and Release Agreement? A separation and release agreement (“separation agreement”) is a contract frequently given to employees as part of a severance package.  Usually the employer offers an employee a separation agreement when the employer is terminating or laying off the employee.  Separation agreements vary, but they invariably require the employee.