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February 2017 Archives

Some Texas employers underpay employees by misclassifying them

Employment and wage laws are in place for the protection of workers and their rightful earnings. In an ideal world, these laws would ensure that workers are always treated fairly, but employers always have and probably always will look for loopholes that allow rules to be bent. One example of this is the misclassification of employees as independent contractors. If you suspect your employer may be guilty of this, consider the following four differences between the two types of workers.

Pregnancy discrimination in the workplace

Women's reproductive rights have become an issue that has the attention of every level of government, including local, state and federal. One of the related concerns is the discrimination that a pregnant woman may experience in the workplace, which is illegal under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as modified by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978. Pregnant workers in Texas should learn exactly what qualifies as workplace pregnancy discrimination as it can be difficult to identify and prove.

Top EEOC charges

Texas employers as well as their employees should be aware of the 10 types of employment discrimination claims that were most frequently reported in 2016. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission stated that 97,443 charges of employment discrimination were resolved in the 2016 fiscal year. The agency also obtained an excess of $482 million for employees who were discriminated against in private as well as government workplaces.

Chef can file FLSA lawsuit despite management duties

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas has ruled that a chef's overtime and retaliation lawsuit can proceed to trial. Although the chef had management duties where she worked, the chef's employer failed to demonstrate that she was exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Under the FLSA, employees whose primary duty is management may be exempt from overtime compensation.

3rd Circuit creates split on ADEA

A decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit may have an impact on the way Texas businesses operate day to day. The plaintiffs in the case filed their claim under the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which was designed to prevent workplace discrimination based on age. In most ADEA disparate-impact cases, a company policy will be evaluated as to its effect on all employees who are 40 years old or older. The 3rd Circuit in this case, though, determined that the impact of a policy on a subgroup may be sufficient to disallow the policy.

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