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Seventh Circuit: Obesity is a Disability Under the ADA Under Limited Circumstances

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All Employers with IL, IN, and WI Employees

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June 12, 2019

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In Richardson v. Chicago Transit Authority, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeal stated that obesity would only be considered a disability under the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) if the obesity is caused by a physiological disorder or condition.  This decision aligns the Seventh Circuit with the Second, Sixth, and Eighth Circuit courts.

Generally, employers covered by the ADA are required to provide disabled employees with reasonable accommodations that will allow the disabled person to perform the essential function of their job.  Richardson provides employers with guidance on how the ADA applies to obesity.  If an obese individual’s condition prevents them from performing essential job duties, or threatens the safety of others, employers may still need to engage in the interactive process to determine if the individual’s condition qualifies under the ADA or other state or local laws.

Action Items

  1. Review interactive process procedures for consistency with this ruling.
  2. Subscribers can call our HR On-Call Hotline at (888) 378-2456 for further assistance.

Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser.

© 2019 ManagEase

Illinois: Get Ready for Marijuana Legalization in 2020

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January 1, 2020

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Illinois is the eleventh state in the nation to legalize marijuana for recreational use, and the first to approve commercial sales of the drug.  House Bill 1438, or the “Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act,” also amends the statewide Right to Privacy in the Workplace Act to explicitly identify marijuana as a lawful product in Illinois.

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March Updates

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Varies

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Varies

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This Short List addresses the following topics:
  1. U.S. Supreme Court Reversed Ninth Circuit Equal Pay Ruling Based on Judge’s Death
  2. Fifth Circuit: Restated Its Position that Title VII Does Not Protect Sexual Orientation
  3. California: Guidance on New Agricultural Overtime Pay Requirements
  4. Alameda, CA: City Minimum Wage Increases to $13.50 in July, Regardless of Employer Size
  5. Florida: Miami Beach Minimum Wage Struck Down
  6. Illinois: $9.25 Minimum Wage by January 2020, With New Possible Penalties
  7. Minneapolis, MN: Minimum Wage Increase Approved
  8. New Jersey: $10 Minimum Wage in July 2019, $15 by 2024
  9. Westchester County, New York: Bans the Box
  10. Portland, Oregon: Prohibits Discrimination Against Atheists and Agnostics
  11. West Virginia: Federal Law Enforcement Pension Freed From State Taxes

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Illinois: Employers Are On the Hook for Any Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act Violation

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January 25, 2019

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In Rosenbach v. Six Flags Entertainment Corporation, the Illinois Supreme Court stated that any time a covered entity fails to comply with the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), even if there is no injury to the person, the person may sue the entity for the violations. Specifically, any time a person’s “legal right is invaded” under BIPA, the person is “aggrieved” and can bring a claim.

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Illinois: Equal Pay, Expense Reimbursement, and Military Leave Updates

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January 1, 2019

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HB 4743 amended the Illinois Equal Pay Act to prohibit paying wages to an African-American employee at a rate less than wage rates paid to non-African-American employees for the same or substantially similar work on jobs that require equal skill, effort and responsibility, and are performed under similar working conditions, with limited exceptions.

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Illinois: New Accommodations for Lactating Mothers

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Employers with 5 or more IL Employees

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August 21, 2018

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Governor Rauner recently signed HB 1595 revising employer requirements for accommodating lactating mothers. Specifically, employers must now provide “reasonable break time” each time an employee needs to expresses milk for up to one year after the child’s birth, unless doing so would create an “undue hardship” on the employer. Employers have the burden to prove an undue hardship based on the nature and cost of the accommodation, overall financial resources of the facility and employer, and type of operation of the employer. Further, the employee’s break time “may” run concurrently with break time already provided, but is not required to.

Upcoming Minimum Wage Increases

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Certain Employers with Employees in CA, DC, IL, ME, MD, MN, OR

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July 1, 2018

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Minimum wage increases typically fall into the beginning or middle of each calendar year, with many states or localities increasing minimum wage rates in July.  Below is a short list of localities with upcoming minimum wage increases effective July 1, 2018.

Seventh Circuit: ADEA Applies to Employees and Job Applicants

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April 26, 2018

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In a split from an Eleventh Circuit ruling last year, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently stated that the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (“ADEA”) provides protections not only to current employees aged 40 or older, but to similarly situated job applicants as well.

Seventh Circuit: Defines Application of the Ministerial Exception in Discrimination Claims

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February 13, 2018

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In Miriam Grussgott v. Milwaukee Jewish Day School, Inc., the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeal used a “totality of circumstances” approach to determine that a Hebrew teacher’s position was ministerial in nature, rendering her ineligible to pursue an employment discrimination claim under the Americans with Disability Act.

In 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court used four factors to determine whether an employee’s role is ministerial: (1) formal job position title, (2) substance of the position based on the title, (3) the employee’s use of the title, and (4) the religious functions the employee performed for the religious institution. Here, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeal used these factors to analyze the employee’s claim, and indicated that the factors must be reviewed under the totality of the circumstances. Specifically, although the employee’s job title of “Hebrew teacher” was not ministerial nor did she hold herself out as a religious leader, when looking at the totality of the circumstances, the court stated that the facts supporting the substance of the job title and her actual job functions outweighed those considerations.

The Seventh Circuit’s decision emphasizes the need to clearly communicate an employee’s job title, duties, and the organization’s expectations.

Action Items

  1. Have job descriptions reviewed for consistency with ministerial duties, if applicable.
  2. Subscribers can call our HR On-Call Hotline at (888) 378-2456 for further assistance.

Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser.

© 2018 ManagEase

Illinois: Appellate Court Ruling May Stem Tide of Biometric Class Action Lawsuits

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All Employers with IL Employees

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December 21, 2017

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(888) 378-2456

Illinois’s Biometric Information Privacy Act (“BIPA”) was implemented to help safeguard individuals’ biometric data, such as fingerprint scans, like those used in biometric time clocks. Employers are required, among other things, to comply with certain notice and consent elements before obtaining employee biometric data.

In Rosenbach v. Six Flags Entertainment, the Illinois Appellate Court stated that a person can only claim a violation of BIPA if an “actual injury, adverse effect, or harm” occurred. Thus, a technical violation when collecting biometric data is not actionable. Employers have been subject to a wave of class action lawsuits alleging violations of BIPA, and this case may turn the tide. Regardless, employers who implement biometric security protocols should nevertheless obey the notice and consent provisions of BIPA.

Action Items

  1. Review biometric time clock and scanning process for compliance with BIPA.

Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser.

© 2018 ManagEase