Disability, Leave & Health Management Blog

Offering Practical Guidance to Employers

With the rise in lawsuits under Title III of the ADA regarding accessibility of websites, Courts have been framing how such claims fit into the law’s requirements for accessibility at places of public accommodation.  The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida recently provided additional clarification in Gomez v. Knife Management, LLC (S.D. Fla. Sep. 14, 2018).  The Defendant owns and operates a chain of restaurants.  There is no dispute that the restaurants are…
Are you tired of the Cook County Earned Sick Leave roller coaster, yet? Last Tuesday, the Village of Northbrook, Illinois, became the most recent Cook County municipality to opt back in to the Cook County Earned Sick Leave Ordinance, joining Western Springs, which — as we previously reported — did an about-face in April and reversed its prior decision to opt-out of the Ordinance.  Beginning January 1, 2019, covered employers with employees in Northbrook…
A recent Middle District of Florida decision granted the Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff’s claims for relief under Title III of the ADA based on Plaintiff’s lack of standing to bring such claims.  In Kennedy v. Cape Siesta Motel (MD FL Oct 4, 2018) the Plaintiff claims she encountered architectural barriers upon her visit to a motel in Brevard County, Florida.  The Plaintiff lives about 175 miles from the motel but has a second home…
When an employee takes medical leave, treatment by a healthcare provider is often assumed, and the frequency of doctor’s visits is rarely scrutinized.  The Pennsylvania federal court’s recent decision in Watkins v. Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh alerts us that this is not always a wise approach. In evaluating FMLA leave entitlements, verifying continuing medical treatment can be well worth the trouble.  Watkins, a military veteran who suffers from PTSD, worked for Blind…
As employers struggle with managing how much, if any, leave is required as an accommodation under the ADA, we are beginning to get more direction from the Courts to guide those decisions. In Easter v. Arkansas Children’s Hospital (E.D. Ark. Oct. 3, 2018) an employee was unable to work after exhausting her FMLA leave but she had an appointment to be evaluated by a specialist less than a month later. The employer denied the additional…
On September 5, 2018, Michigan became the 11th state to enact a mandatory paid sick leave law — the Earned Sick Time Act. The act was a citizen petition-initiated measure that the state legislature approved. Under the act, employees accrue a minimum of one hour of earned sick time for every 30 hours worked. All employees (full-time or part-time) would be entitled to use 72 hours in a year, but whether that time is…
On September 4, 2018, the Department of Labor issued new FMLA notices and certification forms. But don’t panic, the change was procedural in nature; no substantive changes were made to the forms. Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the DOL is required to submit its forms for approval to the Federal Office of Management and Budget (OMB) every three years. While the prior forms expired on May 31, 2018, the DOL had renewed them…
“What did I do wrong?” and “Am I doing this correctly?” are frequent questions from clients regarding FMLA administration. This is the seventeenth in a series highlighting some of the more common mistakes employers can inadvertently make regarding FMLA administration. Being unaware of new FMLA interpretations from the U.S. Department of Labor. While the current version of the FMLA regulations has been in place since 2013, is important to keep up to date on the interpretation…
With the increasing trend of telecommuting employees, it is not uncommon for a company to have small numbers of employees working from remote locations in various states. It is important that employers understand how FMLA eligibility is determined for remote workers.   Some incorrectly believe that a work-at-home employee cannot qualify for FMLA if the home from which they work is not in proximity of 49 other company employees or within 75 miles of a company…
Teenagers are not the only ones dissatisfied when their pleas of “why” are met with a “because I said so.” It turns out that courts of appeal do not care for it either. Careful readers of this space know that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) may require employers to allow modified work schedules when appropriate. An issue that often arises when considering a modified work schedule is whether an employee can perform the essential…