Discrimination and Harassment Law and Practice

We are excited to share the next installment of our video series, Conducting Workplace Investigations | Step #5: Interview Best Practices. This series, 10 Steps Every Company Should Take When Conducting Workplace Investigations, is intended to guide HR leaders faced with investigating a complaint between coworkers, such as harassment or inappropriate conduct,

Managing an employee who is struggling with alcoholism or substance use disorder can be challenging for employers. While both conditions could be protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA), there are differences in how each condition is treated under the law.

Understanding these differences is essential for any HR professional in implementing a plan after discovering that an employee’s work performance or ability to work is being affected by alcoholism or substance use.


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In light of U-Haul’s recent announcement it will no longer hire nicotine users in many states, I recently discussed the laws governing this company policy. Many states, such as Tennessee, implemented laws decades ago that protect smokers.

However, as I stated in the article linked below, Tennessee’s “statute is silent as to whether this protects someone from not being hired.” My take is that “employers will likely be watching closely how refusing to hire smokers pans out since there are many other lifestyle choices that affect health.”


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We are excited to share the next installment of our video series, Conducting Workplace Investigations | Step #4: Perfect the Plan. This series, 10 Steps Every Company Should Take When Conducting Workplace Investigations, is intended to guide HR leaders faced with investigating a complaint between coworkers, such as harassment or inappropriate conduct,

Join us for a complimentary seminar where we will review a broad range of topics pertaining to accommodation issues under the ADA and provide guidance for employers managing these issues.

7:30 a.m. – 8:00 a.m. Registration and Breakfast
8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. Program

Our panels will cover a broad range of topics, including:

  • How

We are excited to share the next installment of our video series, Conducting Workplace Investigations | Step #3: Plan the Process. This series, 10 Steps Every Company Should Take When Conducting Workplace Investigations, is intended to guide HR leaders faced with investigating a complaint between coworkers, such as harassment or inappropriate

I recently discussed the potential for age discrimination in the workplace when companies focus too much on recruitment of young employees. The article argues that by focusing solely on young talent, organizations miss out on the “perspective” and “expertise” that baby boomers can offer customers and fellow employees.

“It often manifests itself in what I

We are excited to share the next installment of our video series, Conducting Workplace Investigations | Step #2: Interview the Complainant. This series, 10 Steps Every Company Should Take When Conducting Workplace Investigations, is intended to guide HR leaders faced with investigating a complaint between coworkers, such as harassment or inappropriate conduct,

Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of a disability and requires employers engage in an interactive process and provide reasonable accommodations. A failure to do so may result in liability.

The ADA requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified applicants or employees. A “reasonable accommodation” is defined as assistance or a change to a position or workplace that accommodates employees with disabilities so they can do the job without causing the employer undue hardship, such as too much difficulty or expense.

Use the Interactive Process to Determine Reasonable Accommodation

In order to determine the appropriate reasonable accommodation, employers and employees must engage in the interactive process, which requires communication and good-faith exploration of possible accommodations. An employer that acts in bad faith in the interactive process may be liable if it can be reasonably concluded that the employee would have been able to perform the job with a reasonable accommodation.

It’s a two-way street: an employee must also make a good faith effort to comply with any of the employer’s reasonable requests.


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I recently discussed the disadvantage of having a partial panel of commissioners at the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Historically, the EEOC is comprised of five commissioners; however, the current panel only has three. Some argue this has hindered the EEOC’s ability to adequately investigate and file lawsuits to combat discrimination among the nation’s