Ohio News & Analysis

  • Demotion for failed drug test isn't disability discrimination

    A federal court in Ohio has reaffirmed that employers may take adverse employment actions based on failed drug tests and an employee's admission of illegal drug use.

  • 6th Circuit upholds broad attorneys' fees provision in noncompete

    A recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit (whose rulings apply to all Ohio employers) underscores the importance of not only having well-drafted noncompetition and nonsolicitation provisions, but also the importance of strategically drafted attorneys' fees provisions.

  • Employee transfer, even without change in pay or title, raises questions of possible retaliation

    A recent decision handed down by the federal court for the Northern District of Ohio raises the possibility that a job transfer following the filing of an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charge could provide a basis for a retaliation claim, even if it doesn't result in a change in job title or a reduction in pay.

  • Know the legal issues you face when employees work past 65

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), about one-third of Americans between the ages of 65 and 69 are still employed. That number has been steadily rising, and it's expected to reach 36 percent over the next five years.

  • Walmart greeter fiasco provides important employment lessons

    Have you ever walked into a Walmart and been greeted by an employee—frequently disabled or elderly—who seemed to have no responsibilities other than to welcome customers to the store? Did you ever wonder what the point of the position was or why a corporation the size of Walmart would pay so many people to do it?

  • Agency Action

    DOL announces new compliance assistance tool. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) in February announced the launch of an enhanced electronic version of the Handy Reference Guide to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The new online version of Wage and Hour Division (WHD) publications aims to assist employers and workers with a resource that provides basic WHD information as well as links to other resources. The WHD established the electronic guide as part of its efforts to modernize compliance assistance materials and provide accessible information to guide compliance. The tool offers a new design—reformatted for laptops, tablets, and other mobile devices—and provides additional resources and related information, including plain-language videos.

  • Workplace Trends

    Most professionals negotiate salary offers, survey finds. Research from staffing firm Robert Half finds that 55% of professionals surveyed tried to negotiate a higher salary with their last employment offer, a 16-point jump from a similar survey released in 2018. Among workers in the 28 U.S. cities polled, Miami, San Diego, and San Francisco had the most respondents who asked for more pay, while Minneapolis, Philadelphia, and Cleveland had the fewest. A separate survey showed that 70% of senior managers said they expect some back-and-forth on salary. About six in 10 are more open to negotiating compensation than they were a year ago.

  • Think you know what 'cause' is? Think again

    A case out of Montgomery County highlights the importance of drafting employment agreements with clarity and avoiding ambiguity. A terminated employee prevailed on his breach of contract and breach of the duty of good faith and fair dealing claims after he was terminated for "willful misconduct" following a verbal and (minor) physical altercation with a subordinate employee. The problem was that "willful misconduct" wasn't defined in the employment agreement, and the court held that the term should be construed against the employer because it drafted the agreement.

  • Offering reinstatement for withdrawal of discrimination claims is not retaliation

    An Ohio appeals court ruled that offering reinstatement to a furloughed employee in exchange for dismissing an age discrimination lawsuit and releasing all claims is lawful.

  • A treatment plan for negative online employee reviews

    The Wall Street Journal recently reported on its discovery that, after analyzing millions of online reviews of various companies by their current and former employees, it appeared that more than 400 employers might be gaming the system. Each of the companies experienced unusually large single-month increases in the number of reviews posted by their employees to the jobs website Glassdoor. The surges tended to be disproportionately positive not only for the months in which they occurred but also by comparison to the surrounding months. The clear implication was that someone in a position of authority at the companies had spearheaded a campaign to get employees to post positive reviews to the site in an effort to counteract the overwhelmingly negative ones already posted.