Indiana News & Analysis

  • Michigan modifies COVID-19 leave, return-to-work requirements

    On August 7, Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order (EO) 2020-166 modifying required COVID-19 leave and clarifying when it's required and when an employee can return to work. This order replaces EO 2020-36.

  • Most Ohio employers must provide COVID-19-related leave to employees

    An Ohio employee sued after being terminated for self-quarantining because of COVID-19. Although her lawsuit is pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio, federal laws do require most employers to provide coronavirus-related leave.

  • Unemployed Michiganders now eligible for additional $300 per week

    Pandemic unemployment assistance benefits, which afforded $600 in supplemental unemployment compensation aid to eligible individuals through much of the COVID-19 crisis, ceased on July 31, 2020. Congress failed to reach a consensus on an extension, so on August 8, President Donald Trump signed a memorandum authorizing the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to "provide financial assistance for the needs of those who have lost employment as a result of the pandemic."

  • Arbitration agreements not always a way to avoid trial

    An Ohio appellate court recently refused to force an employee to arbitrate her sexual assault, retaliation, and harassment claims because they weren't foreseeable consequences of her employment.

  • New Michigan order tightens restrictions for COVID-19 sick days

    Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer recently signed Executive Order (EO) 2020-172 to protect employees from retaliation for missing work because of COVID-19 symptoms, diagnosis, or exposure. In a move that helps employers, the order tightens the restrictions on the symptoms necessary for employees to stay home without facing repercussions from the company.

  • Despite recent court decisions, questions remain for religious employers

    The U.S. Supreme Court issued two decisions recently that were welcome news for religious organizations and other employers that rely on religious convictions as they conduct their business. One decision bolstered the "ministerial exception," a doctrine stemming from the First Amendment that prevents government interference in religious organizations' ability to hire and fire employees. The other decision says certain private employers with religious or moral objections to birth control can exclude contraception coverage in their employer-sponsored health plans even though the Affordable Care Act (ACA) mandates such coverage for most employers.

  • Incivility and harassment at work? Employer policies can help

    Employers concerned about racist, sexist, and other unacceptable outbursts in the workplace cheered a decision from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in July that makes it easier to discipline or fire employees for offensive speech. Under the previous standard, employees disciplined for profane outbursts often could look to the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) for protection since Section 7 of the Act prohibits employer policies that may impede employee efforts to join a union or otherwise band together to improve the terms and conditions of employment. The previous standard was tolerant of some degree of heated speech uttered in the exercise of Section 7 rights as long as it wasn't violent or otherwise too extreme.

  • Q - A: Notifying employees about a coworkers COVID-19 infection

    Q We are an employer with approximately 400 employees, and we are aware a couple of our workers have tested positive for COVID-19. Are we required to notify all employees about the coworkers who have tested positive for the virus?

  • What businesses should know about OSHA's supplemental reopening guidance

    The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently issued guidance on returning to work for businesses deemed nonessential. The guidance is intended to supplement the agency's previously issued guidance on preparing workplaces for COVID-19 as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) guidelines for "Opening Up America Again." OSHA's guidance is also supposed to supplement state and local information and reopening requirements. You can use the guidance to develop policies and procedures to ensure your employees' safety and health.

  • CDC revamps recs for symptomatic employees, but COVID-19 testing can continue

    Increasing evidence shows most people with mild to moderate COVID-19 are no longer infectious 10 days after they begin having symptoms. Consequently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has suddenly switched course and started discouraging people from getting tested a second time after they recover. Regardless, employers may still require a negative test before letting infected employees return to the workplace.