Arbitration

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    Attorneys who have been involved in employment law litigation will almost unanimously agree that lawsuits involving employer/employee disputes are legally complicated, emotionally charged, slow-moving, and expensive. Because of those problems, alternative methods of resolving conflicts in the workplace have gained increasing respect from...

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    In a 3-2 decision, the Alaska Supreme Court recently reaffirmed the high level of deference it gives to arbitration decisions. The court upheld an arbitrator's decision to reinstate an Alaska state trooper who was fired after he had sex with a domestic violence victim one day after arresting her husband. Facts and proceedings In April 2009,...
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    Some employers ask their employees to sign arbitration agreements in an effort to avoid defending employment discrimination lawsuits in court. If an employee signs an arbitration agreement and the agreement is enforceable, he is only entitled to have his case heard by an arbitrator, not a jury. But what about employees who want to bond together in...
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    The U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals (whose rulings apply to all Alabama employers) recently held that class action waivers in arbitration agreements are enforceable for wage and hour claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The court specifically found that the FLSA doesn't provide employees with a substantive right to file a...
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    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit (whose rulings apply to Tennessee employers) recently issued a decision demonstrating the impact a few words can have on the enforceability of an arbitration agreement. Tennessee employers that enter into arbitration or dispute resolution agreements with their employees should take note to avoid the...
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    Many baseball fans here in California may have been celebrating an arbitrator's recent decision to uphold the suspension of New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez, although the suspension was reduced slightly. At its heart, the A-Rod fiasco boils down to a dispute between an employer — Major League Baseball (MLB) — and one of its...
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    Many Red Sox fans here in Maine may have been celebrating an arbitrator's recent decision to uphold the suspension of New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez, although the suspension was reduced slightly. At its heart, the A-Rod fiasco boils down to a dispute between an employer — Major League Baseball (MLB) — and one of its...
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    As we've been predicting, the Obama administration is now seeking to accomplish through administrative rulemaking what it couldn't achieve through legislation. As of last month, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is moving "full steam ahead" with its prounion agenda. The Board is proposing to change the way it determines whether it will...
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    What does "changing clothes" mean in the context of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)? On January 27, the U.S. Supreme Court finally shed some light on the issue. The Court held that under the terms of a collective bargaining agreement (CBA), the time employees spend putting on and taking off their mandatory protective gear (otherwise known as "...
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    Despite employers' best efforts to eradicate discrimination as well as other potentially illegal workplace conduct such as wage and hour violations, employment litigation remains steady. Class actions against employers suffered a momentary setback after the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Wal-Mart v. Dukes, but plaintiffs' attorneys have been...
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