DOMA.jpgThis past Friday, the United States Supreme Court announced that it would consider whether the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unlawfully denies benefits to gay and lesbian couples who are married in states that allow such unions.  A Supreme Court decision nullifying DOMA could have wide ranging impacts, including how the Family and Medical Leave

business damaged by hurricane.jpgThanks for the great feedback we received on our post earlier this week about Hurricane Sandy’s impact on employers when it comes to issues arising under the Family and Medical Leave Act.  In your feedback, I received several requests to address the following question:

If an employer shuts down because of damage related to the

hurricane sandy.jpgOur thoughts and prayers are with those on the east coast who are attempting to return to some sense of normalcy in the wake of the devastation left behind by Hurricane Sandy

Natural disasters like Sandy raise a host of issues for employers: how do you pay your employees during during suspended operations?  Whether

calendar.jpgThere are a number of discussions happening lately about updating handbook provisions and social media policies to ward off a suddenly over-zealous National Labor Relations Board.  And this advice certainly is well taken.

As you review and revise these policies, consider also taking a look at your FMLA policy, and specifically, how you calculate your

sick_leave_protest.jpgQ:  One of our employees will be absent for a serious health condition.  However, the employee prefers to use his accrued sick days instead of FMLA leave.  He has enough sick time to cover the absence.  In this situation, can the employee choose not to take FMLA leave, either because he has not specifically asked

civil union ring.jpgIllinois currently has no equivalent of the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.  Soon, it may.  And unlike the FMLA, the proposed Illinois leave law would allow civil union partners the same leave entitlements currently enjoyed by married couples.  Notably, because of the conflicting parameters of state and federal law, the proposed Illinois Family and

woman_pregnant_child_stomach_brother_sister.jpgQ: Can an Employer Deny FMLA Leave to An Employee Who Is Not Yet Eligible to Take Leave?

A.  It depends, particularly after a federal appellate court handed down a ruling on this very issue last week.

The underlying story is straightforward: On October 5, 2008, Kathryn Pereda began working for Brookdale, which operates senior

turkey.jpgTis the season already, as I am starting to receive telephone calls from employers with questions about how they calculate an employee’s FMLA leave during a holiday week or when the employer is closed for a period of time (e.g., winter break for schools, plant shut down).  As we prepare for the holidays, here are