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McBrayer Blogs

Showing 3 posts from February 2012.

Plan Ahead – The Lesson of Fighting Unemployment Benefit Claims

Few things are more frustrating for an employer than terminating an employee for cause due to violation of company policy, be it for failing a drug test or some form of misconduct, and then that employee being awarded unemployment benefits. We here at McBrayer PLLC find this result to be all too common, and then it is typically an uphill battle to overturn the award.  In many instances, the problem lies not in the award itself, but in the lack of foresight and preparation which preceded the termination of the employee.  If the first time the issue of unemployment benefits is addressed is post-termination, then the key moment to address the issue has likely been lost.  More >

The Physician Employment Trend Continues

As healthcare reform continues to be implemented, the trend toward clinical integration and consolidation also continues and will be a defining characteristic of healthcare delivery in the years ahead.  One critical component of clinical integration and consolidation has been health systems employing physicians to form large multi-specialty groups to serve the patient population.  Physicians contemplating entering into an employment relationship with a hospital or health system must examine a number of critical issues before entering into an employment agreement. More >

Retaliation by Association

Last January, the U.S. Supreme Court expanded those protected under the retaliation provisions of Title VII and included employees who have a close family relationship to a person who has made a complaint of discrimination.  Previously, only those persons who actually made or supported a complaint were protected by law.  However, in Thompson v. North American Stainless, the Supreme Court unanimously held that it is an unlawful employment practice to fire or otherwise retaliate against an employee's "close family member" who has filed claim of discrimination.  In Thompson, two employees were engaged to one another.  The female co-worker filed a claim of discrimination against her supervisors and subsequently, the male was fired.  The male filed a claim of retaliation under Title VII claiming that his termination was in retaliation for his fiancée's discrimination complaint. While the Sixth Circuit held that he did not state a claim under the statute as one who "engaged in protected activity," the U.S. Supreme Court reversed holding that the anti-retaliation provisions protect conduct that may dissuade a worker from making or supporting a charge of discrimination.  As applied in this case, the Court determined that the female co-worker may have been dissuaded from making a claim of discrimination if she knew that her fiancée could be fired as a result.  This case gives a cause of action to the "close family member" for retaliation and opens employers up to additional liability. More >

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