How Not to Use Surveillance in an FMLA Situation

A recent decision from the US District Court in Idaho provides some useful reminders of what can constitute interference and retaliation under the FMLA. As our readers know, it is a violation of the federal FMLA to interfere with, restrain, or deny the exercise or attempted exercise of FMLA rights by an employee.  Courts have […]

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Ensuring Compliance with Harassment Training Obligations

The national attention given recently to sexual harassment serves as a good reminder to Maine employers of their obligations to employees in this context. In addition, the first of a new year is always a good time to renew a commitment to a harassment free workplace and ensure compliance with training requirements. In terms of […]

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U.S. Department of Labor’s OSHA Extends Compliance Date for Electronically Submitting Injury, Illness Reports to December 15, 2017

To allow affected employers additional time to become familiar with a new electronic reporting system launched on August 1, 2017, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced on November 22, 2017, that it has extended the  date by which employers must electronically report injury and illness data through the Injury Tracking Application (ITA) […]

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Minimum Salary Level for Maine Exempt Employees Rises To $30,000 per Year, or $576.93 per Week, Effective on January 1, 2018

Referendum Question 4, approved by Maine voters in November, 2016, raised the Maine minimum wage to $9.00 per hour, effective on January 7, 2017, and to $10.00 per hour effective as of January 1, 2018, with more annual increases in later years. A consequence of that change was that the minimum salary in Maine for […]

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Employers Can be At Risk for Breaches of Personal Employee Information  

In the course of ordinary business, employers often come into possession of personal and very confidential information pertaining to its employees, including Social Security numbers, dates of birth, bank account information, and even health information developed through a wellness program, requests for leave or disability benefits.  This information may come from background investigations or from […]

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A Cautionary Tale About the FMLA

This is a story about the potential consequences of not properly training supervisors as to FMLA rights and obligations.  It is a long and detailed story, but the details are necessary to understand how the court came to its decision.   It is also an important story because ultimately the court determined not only that the […]

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Unusual Situations May Require Leave Time

Without question, employees are impacted by events occurring outside of the workplace and such events can have a direct effect on their work status, including requests for time off.   This is a reminder of just two types of those events: 1) natural disasters/public health emergencies and 2) the return to school of an employee’s child. […]

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The Workers’ Compensation Appellate Division Addresses Reimbursement for Generic Drugs

  A recent Appellate Division decision addressed an insurer’s ability to pay only the cost of generic as opposed to brand name drugs under the Workers’ Compensation Act and specifically raised the issue of whose burden it is to show generic drugs were available. Section 206(11) of the Act allows insurers to argue the cost […]

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Increased Job Duties Resulted in Compensable Workers’ Compensation Stress Claim

A decision involving a workers’ compensation stress claim was issued by an Administrative Law Judge earlier this year that addressed the issue of increased work duties.   The employee was given additional job duties after the departure of two co-workers.  There was no dispute by the employer that the employee’s duties increased, that she performed […]

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Constructive Discharge: Employers May Still Face Liability Even When an Employee Resigns

Business owners generally recognize that terminating an employee from employment carries with it the risk of litigation in that the employee may later claim the employer’s decision was unlawful.  What may be less obvious is that an employer may still face a claim under various employment laws even when an employee is not fired, but […]

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