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Seventh Circuit Reaffirms the Importance of Prompt, Effective Remedial Action as a Defense to Harassment Claims

On December 26, 2018, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision affirming summary judgment and dismissing claims of sexual discrimination, sexual harassment and retaliation against an employer, in Swyear v. Fare Foods Corporation. The Seventh Circuit reiterated that single or isolated incidents of inappropriate conduct in the workplace may not always rise to…

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Federal Commission on School Safety Issues Final Report

On December 18, 2018, the Federal Commission on School Safety issued its much-anticipated final report. The Commission, led by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, was created by President Trump following the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. It was tasked with “producing a report of policy recommendations in an effort to help prevent future tragedies.” The report…

NLRB Shifts to Employer-Friendly View of Workplace Rules

National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel Peter Robb recently issued a new Guidance Memorandum detailing how NLRB Regional Offices receiving claims of improper employment policies are to interpret employer workplace rules. The Memo is good news for employers because it establishes a new, and much more employer-friendly standard for lawfulness of employee work rules. The…

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Matt Flanary

Employee Benefits Update: IRS Benefit Plan Limitations

Earlier this week, the Internal Revenue Service issued the various retirement plan limitations for 2019. There are changes to some of the most important numbers from 2018: Elective Deferral Limit: $19,000 Catch-Up Contributions: $6,000 415 (Total) Plan Limit: $56,000 Compensation Limit: $280,000 See an up-to-date chart that shows the historical limits from 2015 through 2019,…

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5 Tips for Responding to Reports of Bullying

As National Bullying Prevention Month draws to a close, it is important to reflect on the legal requirements and best practices for addressing reports of bullying and harassment. Effectively responding to reports of bullying and harassment is critical, not only for protecting the safety and wellbeing of the students, but also for protecting the school…

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Brian Waterman

Employee Termination: Sending Mixed Messages Can Leave You Exposed

Most employers understand the importance of having legitimate business reasons for terminating an employee. However, it is also critical for all decision makers involved in the termination to have the same understanding of both the reasons for, and the facts leading to, the termination. Failure to ensure a consistent understanding of all the facts can…

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Legal Tips to Prevent Harassment in the Workplace

In this #MeToo era, preventing harassment in the workplace is necessary to retain good employees, protect your entities’ reputation and avoid liability for the employer, as well as individual employees. It is a reason to proactively review harassment policies, complaint procedures and training on harassment – and to do so now before it’s too late…

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7th Circuit Court Invalidates Wisconsin’s 30-Day Dues Deduction Revocation Law

On September 13, 2018, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in International Association of Machinists District 10 and Local Lodge 873 v. Allen, holding Wisconsin could not shorten the one-year irrevocable period for dues-checkoff authorizations imposed by federal law. This decision affirms an earlier United States District Court decision out of the Western…

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U.S. Department of Labor Releases Updated FMLA Forms

The Department of Labor (DOL) has updated the FMLA forms which expired on May 31, 2018. The DOL is required to submit its FMLA forms every three years to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for approval. The forms were last approved in 2015. After expiration, they were extended on a month-to-month basis while OMB…

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Attorney Dan Vliet with client

Wisconsin Supreme Court Decision Provides Opportunities to Reduce Future Unemployment Compensation Costs

On June 26, 2018, the Wisconsin Supreme Court issued its decision in Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development v. Wisconsin Labor and Industry Review Commission, et al, 2018 WI 77, in which it held that the plain language of the applicable statute allows an employer to adopt its own absenteeism policy, allowing for a violation of…

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