Westlaw Topical Highlights: Labor and Employment, March 23, 2016

March 23, 2016

Labor and EmploymentWestlaw Topical Highlights for Intellectual Property provides summaries of significant federal court decisions and legislative and administrative activities affecting Intellectual Property law. A Westlaw subscription is required to access the documents linked from this page.

Public Employment: County’s decision to lay off two corrections officers was a mandatory subject of collective bargaining.  Kitsap County v. Kitsap County Correctional Officers’ Guild, Inc. 2016 WL 1090154 (Wash.App. Div. 1) A panel of the Washington Court of Appeals ruled that when a public sector employer proposes to balance the budget by laying off workers who are represented by a union, the union must have the opportunity to bargain over whether the cost saving can be achieved by other means. In the case before it, the Court determined that the subject of a correctional officers union’s demand to bargain was the county’s decision to lay off two corrections officers, which was a mandatory subject of bargaining, not the level of funding allocated to the jail’s budget. 2016 WL 1090154. (The full-text of the rest of the Topical Highlights is available within Westlaw Next, subscription required).      

Discrimination: Factual issue existed on interference claim as to whether employer’s conduct excused any residual failure in compliance.  Graziadio v. Culinary Institute of America 2016 WL 1055742 (C.A.2

Benefit Plans: Benefit plan established and maintained by church-affiliated organization was not a church plan.  Stapleton v. Advocate Health Care Network 2016 WL 1055784 (C.A.7 (Ill.))

Hours and Wages: Definition of “employee” in state constitution incorporates the exclusions and exemptions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  Haight v. Minchak 2016 WL 1061737 (Ohio)

Unemployment Compensation: Employer severed labor dispute as cause of unemployment, as required for striking union members to be eligible for unemployment compensation.  U.S. Tsubaki, Inc. v. Dir., Ohio Dept. of Job & Family Servs. 2016 WL 853785 (Ohio App. 6 Dist.)

Arbitration: Employee’s denial of receiving arbitration agreement was sufficient to create a fact issue that the trial court could resolve.  Kmart Stores of Texas, L.L.C. v. Ramirez 2016 WL 1055870 (Tex.App.-El Paso)

Workers’ Compensation: Department of Labor and Industries bears burden of proving commission or attempt of felony under felony payment bar to workers’ compensation benefits.  Department of Labor and Industries v. Rowley 2016 WL 1078525 (Wash.)

Discrimination: African-American employee plausibly pled severe and pervasive harassment at water and sewage district on his Title VII hostile work environment claim.  Short v. Immokalee Water & Sewer District 2016 WL 749007 (M.D.Fla.)

Benefit Plans: PBGC Appeals Board failed to justify its decision not to honor former corporation executive’s request for lump-sum payment of accrued benefits.  Fisher v. Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation 2016 WL 755607 (D.D.C.)

Unions: Local labor union did not disaffiliate from international labor union prior to imposition of emergency trusteeship over local union.  Union De Empleados De Muelles De Puerto Rico, Inc. v. International Longshoremen’s Association 2016 WL 721041 (D.Puerto Rico)

Discrimination: DHS employee failed to establish that he exhausted administrative remedies with respect to DHS’s alleged Title VII violations.  Crawford v. Johnson 2016 WL 777910 (D.D.C.)

Discrimination: White male former employee of state turnpike commission failed to sufficiently allege Title VII reverse gender discrimination claim against employer.  Brzozowski v. Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission 2016 WL 758329 (E.D.Pa.)

Hours and Wages: Catering company’s employees were similarly situated, as required for conditional certification of FLSA collective action.  Zaldivar v. JMJ Caterers, Inc. 2016 WL 792404 (E.D.N.Y.)

Hours and Wages: Representative proof of time that workers spent donning and doffing protective gear supported collective action and class certification for overtime pay claims — Supreme Court Decision Tyson Foods, Inc. v. Bouaphakeo 2016 WL 1092414 (U.S.)

Discrimination: Employee’s allegations that his supervisor treated him unfairly was insufficient to support discrimination claims under Title VII and §1981.  Nieblas-Love v. New York City Housing Authority 2016 WL 796845 (S.D.N.Y.)