Michigan News & Analysis

  • 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.

  • CPB begins assigning alphanumeric I-94 numbers

    As of May 2019, I-94 numbers have become alphanumeric. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) previously assigned 11-digit I-94 numbers, but it had to make the change because it's running out of numeric-only I-94 numbers.

  • Just thinking about reporting bad behavior isn't protected activity

    The Michigan Court of Appeals reversed a lower court's denial of summary judgment (dismissal without a trial) in a case involving an employee terminated shortly after raising concerns about a coworker. The fired worker couldn't demonstrate that she reported or was about to report her concerns to a public body, nor could she prove her termination constituted retaliation in violation of Michigan public policy.

  • DOL says FMLA leave mandatory for employees and employers

    After more than 25 years, you might think questions regarding proper interpretation of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) would be settled. It's a highly regulated law, and it provides employers far more detail and clarity than they get with most other labor and employment laws.

  • Tips to ensure you are prepared for a deposition

    For an HR professional, giving a deposition is a lot like visiting the dentist. You know it's necessary, but you probably aren't looking forward to it. You may be asked questions you don't want to answer (like how often you actually floss). And finally, consistently responsible practices should reduce your stress levels about the event, make it go a lot smoother, and prevent worse problems in the future.

  • Michigan's new PMLA plagued by ambiguities, misconceptions

    Michigan's Paid Medical Leave Act (PMLA) went into effect on March 29, 2019. However, the new law is filled with ambiguities, some of which may require administrative determinations or court rulings to iron out what is required. Here's a look at some of the PMLA's ambiguities as well as some common misconceptions about the new law. (For more information on the new law, see "Michigan finalizes paid sick leave law" on pg. 1 of our February 2019 issue.)