Michigan News & Analysis

  • Favoritism may serve as legitimate nondiscriminatory reason for rehiring

    The Michigan Court of Appeals held that a nursing facility didn't engage in race discrimination when it rehired a Caucasian nurse but not an African-American nurse because the Caucasian nurse was afforded a second chance based on a coworker's recommendation and insistence.

  • DOL updates opinion on independent contractors for the gig economy

    Under the Trump administration, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has taken a decidedly industry-friendly approach to the independent contractor analysis. If there was any doubt before, that was made clear by its recent issuance of a whopping 10-page opinion letter examining the nature of the relationship between a virtual marketplace company (think Uber) and the "gig" workers they employ (e.g., Uber drivers).

  • Republican-led NLRB rolling back previous Board changes

    The current majority-Republican National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently announced its agenda to clarify federal labor law through rulemaking. Also, the Board continues to roll back changes to long-standing precedent made by the previous Obama NLRB.

  • Managing requests for leaves, medical restrictions, and accommodations, part 2

    Asked and Answered is continuing its four-month series addressing frequently asked questions on how to effectively manage requests for leaves, restrictions, and accommodations.

  • Collection of social media identifiers from U.S. visa applicants

    Effective May 31, 2019, the U.S. Department of State is now requiring visa applicants to disclose five years of social media and contact history when applying for a nonimmigrant or immigrant visa. Many visitors to the United States require visas to enter the country, for both tourism and business.

  • Transfer, poor evaluation may be proof of discrimination, retaliation

    The U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals (whose decisions apply to Michigan employers) recently held that an assistant high school principal who was given a poor evaluation and transferred to a middle school may have been subjected to retaliation for complaining about gender discrimination after she was able to show that a male assistant principal at the same high school engaged in substantially similar conduct but received less severe discipline.

  • Supreme Court will decide whether LGBT discrimination is unlawful

    The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to decide the long-unresolved question of whether Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects employees from discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. The issue has been percolating in the lower courts for quite a while. As it frequently does, the Court declined to consider the question until there was a conflict between several appellate courts. Let's take a look at the history of the Court's decisions, the arguments on both sides of the issue, and what we can expect next.

  • September 30 deadline looms for newly required EEO-1 data

    Employers required to submit EEO-1 reports to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) are venturing into uncharted territory as they work to collect newly required information due by September 30. While they may be accustomed to submitting traditional EEO-1 information—data on employees' race/ethnicity and gender, or what's being called Component 1 data—this year they also must compile data on compensation and hours worked, or what's being called Component 2 data.

  • What you need to know about MUTSA

    Michigan protects businesses from the misappropriation of trade secrets through its version of the Uniform Trade Secrets Act, known as the Michigan Trade Secrets Act, or MUTSA. You should be aware of the requirements of the MUTSA so you can make efforts to protect your own trade secrets and avoid liability for infringing on other companies' trade secrets.

  • Managing requests for leave, medical restrictions, and accommodations, part 1

    Have you ever dealt with employees who run out of Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave but need additional time off, who refuse to provide information about their restrictions or requested accommodations, or whose off-duty activities are inconsistent with their stated need for FMLA leave? This month, "Asked & Answered" begins a four-part series addressing frequently asked questions about effectively managing requests for leave, medical restrictions, and accommodations.