Showing all articles
Showing Results 181 - 200 of 617

  • Court Dismisses EEOC’s Disparate Impact Claims Based on Criminal Background and Credit Checks

    09/04/2013 / Andrew D. Moran

    In an opinion which sharply criticized the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s attempted use of statistics to support its discrimination claims based on criminal background and credit checks, the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland granted summary judgment to Freeman, Inc. on the EEOC’s race and sex discrimination claims under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. EEOC v. Freeman, D. Md., No: 8:09-cv-02573, 8/9/13. The EEOC has taken the position that employers’ use of credit and conviction records in making employment decisions can have the effect of discriminating against minorities, and such information should be considered only in limited circumstances.   

    Read More  
  • Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.: Supreme Court Finds Expansive Scope for First Sale Doctrine

    07/24/2013 / John A. Kvinge

    The Supreme Court previously held in Quality King Distributors v. L’anza Research Int’l, Inc. that the first sale doctrine covers the foreign sale of a work that was printed in the United States. The Supreme Court left unanswered whether a book that was both printed and sold abroad qualifies as a work “lawfully made under” the Copyright Act. In Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., the Supreme Court considered this question, and held that the first sale doctrine covers copyrighted works that are both printed and sold abroad.

    Read More  
  • Supreme Court Defines “Supervisor” and Adds Protection to Employers from Title VII Hostile Work Environment Claims

    07/23/2013 / Daniel J. Ballintine and Martha Kramer

    On June 24, 2013, in a 5-4 opinion, the Supreme Court defined “supervisor” as it pertains to vicarious liability under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In Vance v. Ball State University, No. 11-556, the Court held that to be considered a supervisor, an employee must have the authority to make tangible employment decisions, such as hiring and firing.

    Read More  
  • U.S. Supreme Court Ruling in Favor of Employers: Employees Must Prove Strict ‘But-For’ Causation to Establish A Title VII Retaliation Claim

    07/23/2013 / Daniel J. Ballintine and Armeen Mistry

    On June 24, 2013, the United States Supreme Court decided, in University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center v. Nassar, that employees pursuing Title VII retaliation claims must prove the traditional “but-for” causation, instead of the relaxed “motivating factor” standard applicable to Title VII discrimination claims.

    Read More  
  • Liability Waivers in Minnesota Governed By New Law Effective August 1, 2013

    07/23/2013 / Melissa L. Hagstrum

    Liability waivers for consumer services – including recreational activities – that waive liability for damage, injuries or death which result from “ordinary negligence" remain enforceable in Minnesota following the 2012 - 2013 legislative session. Though the Minnesota Legislature at one point considered proposals to make nearly all liability waivers unenforceable, the bill ultimately passed by the legislature and signed into law by Governor Dayton is consistent with long-standing common law in Minnesota.

    Read More  
  • No Robbing Peter to Pay Paul: Court Holds Property Owner Cannot Rely on Cross-Parking Easement With Adjacent Shopping Center to Meet Parking Requirements for New Use

    07/11/2013 / Gary A. Van Cleve, Chair, Real Estate Litigation Department

    Many shopping center owners have reciprocal or cross-parking easement agreements with free-standing property owners located either within or adjacent to the shopping center parking lot. The Minnesota Court of Appeals held in a recent decision, reversing the district court, that the owner of the free-standing site cannot rely on a cross-parking easement agreement with a shopping center to meet city parking requirements for a new parking-intensive use on the free-standing site.

    Read More  
  • Minnesota Tax Court Case Update: The New Era Begins

    07/11/2013 / Timothy A. Rye

    Here we have three tax court cases and one court of appeals decision: 1) argues for a motion in limine to exclude appraisal reports that use the larger-parcel appraisal theory; 2) argues for a dismissal of many because of non-payment of taxes by only a few; 3) a logical ruling regarding the all-too-common duplicate filing; and 4) the court of appeals reminds us of the balance between appraisal science, art, and judicial valuation decisions.

    Read More  
  • Sexual Harassment Can Be Unlawful Even if Directed at Members of Both Sexes

    06/05/2013 / Andrew D. Moran

    The Minnesota Supreme Court recently considered this “equal opportunity harasser” defense, in Rasmussen v. Two Harbors Fish Co. d/b/a Lou’s Fish House, and held that former employees’ claims against their employer for hostile work environment sexual harassment may be advanced even where: (1) the sexually explicit conduct of the employers’ owner was directed at both males and females; and (2) the former employees did not experience any adverse employment actions in terms of promotions, pay or hours.

    Read More  
  • Asset Buyer Held Liable for Seller’s Overtime Obligations

    05/31/2013 / Christopher J. Harristhal & Susan E. Tegt

    The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently held, in Teed v. Thomas & Betts Power Solutions, LLC, that a purchaser of the assets of a business subject to claims by employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) was subject to successor liability for those claims, even though the purchaser expressly disclaimed liability for the claims under the terms of the asset sale. 711 F. 3d 763 (7th Cir. 2013). The Teed decision is important to business owners who are considering an asset sale or purchase because any transfer of FLSA liability, like other potential labor relations and employment liabilities arising under federal law, is likely to have a significant impact on the successor’s assets. Teed advises purchasers to conduct an audit of potential and existing employee claims against the seller and to adjust asset purchase offers accordingly.

    Read More  
  • New Minnesota Law: Employers Cannot Ask About Prior Convictions on Application

    05/31/2013 / John A. Kvinge

    Starting January 1, 2014, most employers will be prohibited from requiring applicants to disclose their criminal history on an initial employment application. This so-called “ban the box” legislation has applied to public employers in Minnesota since 2009, and was recently expanded to private employers by legislation signed by Governor Dayton on May 15, 2013.

    Read More  
  • Supreme Court Denies Review on the Scope of the “Continuing Violation” Doctrine in Racial Bias Cases

    04/30/2013 / Andrew D. Moran

    On April 1, 2013, the United States Supreme Court declined to resolve a purported circuit split on the applicability of the “continuing violation” doctrine to allegations of systemic violations of Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. In denying the petition filed by several Asian American police officers employed by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the Court left intact a Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that “failure-to-promote” claims for discrete acts occurring outside of the limitations period were time barred and could not be saved by the continuing violation doctrine.

    Read More  
  • Changes to Form I-9: Employers Required to Switch to New Version before May 7, 2013

    03/27/2013 / John A. Kvinge

    On March 8, 2013, The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services released a new version of Form I-9, which employers must use to verify identity and employment eligibility for all new employees. All employers must begin using the new version of Form I-9 no later than May 7, 2013. 

    Read More  
  • Update on the Family and Medical Leave Act

    03/08/2013 / Andrew D. Moran

    In February of 2013, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued updated Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) regulations and forms. The FMLA and its regulations were amended in January of 2009, and many employers updated their policies and forms at that time. In October of 2009, the FMLA was amended once again, but updated regulations and forms were not issued until last month. The new regulations took effect on March 8, 2013, and are summarized in this article.

    Read More  
  • 20-Year Delay in Asserting Claim for Correction of Inventorship Does Not Result in Laches

    02/28/2013 / John A. Kvinge

    A Federal Circuit case in the last few months addressed the question of whether the six-year period for the presumption of laches begins running prior to the issuance date of the patent, if the unnamed inventor should have known prior to issuance that he or she was not named as an inventor in the patent application. The case, Hor v. Chu, Case No. 2011-1540, involved a patent for high-temperature superconducting materials.

    Read More  
  • Already, LLC v. Nike, Inc.: Supreme Court Gives Shoe Trademark Lawsuit the Boot

    02/28/2013 / John A. Kvinge

    The Supreme Court case, Already, LLC v. Nike, Inc., questioned whether a plaintiff can eliminate a defendant’s standing to challenge the validity of a trademark by giving the defendant a permanent covenant not to sue – essentially eliminating the chance that the defendant could ever be harmed by the existence of a trademark.

    Read More  
  • Minnesota Court of Appeals Decides Wrongful Death Statute of Limitations and Federal Preemption Issues In Medical Device Product Defect Case

    02/28/2013 / Melissa L. Hagstrum

    Product manufacturers and plaintiffs’ attorneys watched closely as the Minnesota Court of Appeals issued its decision in the medical device product defect case Lamere vs. St. Jude Medical, Inc. (A12-0609) on February 19, 2013. 

    Read More  
  • Franchisor Handbook: When franchisees struggle, fast action may ward off the worst

    02/01/2013 / Charles S. Modell

    All businesses have their challenges, and franchisees are no exception. Unfortunately, franchisors often do not recognize a franchisee has a problem until the royalty check is late.  

    While it is the franchisee’s responsibility to operate its business, if you are a franchisor and want to avoid long-term problems with franchised units, you should make it known to franchisees that you are there to help them, and they should call you at the first sign of a significant downturn or operating issue.  

    Read More  
  • Coyle Featured in BATC Magazine as 'Our Guy At The Capitol'

    01/20/2013 / Peter J. Coyle

    Peter Coyle was featured in the January 2013 edition of Builders' Digest: The Magazine for BATC Members published by the Builders Association of the Twin Cities. The article discussed Peter's long-standing relationship representing BATC at the capitol and three successful issues Peter helped resolve for BATC involving variance issues, attorney fees and park fees.

    Read More  
  • Former Faculty Member Seeks New Trial in Political Discrimination Suit

    12/28/2012 / Andrew D. Moran

    A closely-watched discrimination suit in Iowa may have ended in a mistrial, but may lead to an expansion of employer liability based on political viewpoint discrimination. Teresa Wagner, a University of Iowa faculty member, sued Carolyn Jones, the former dean of the University of Iowa College of Law. Wagner’s lawsuit, filed in 2009, alleged that she was the victim of political discrimination and was denied equal protection under the law when the university denied her a full-time teaching position because of her conservative political views and her work with certain conservative groups that oppose same sex marriage rights and abortion

    Read More  
  • Minnesota Court of Appeals allows uncollectible damages award to be reallocated to severally liable co-defendants

    12/28/2012 / Melissa L. Hagstrum

    The Minnesota Court of Appeals’ decision in O’Brien v. Dombeck, Case No. A12-0984, published December 3, 2012, marks the first time in the nearly ten years since the Minnesota legislature modified Minnesota’s joint and several liability statute that Minnesota courts have spoken on the ambiguous relationship between the statute’s joint and several liability requirements and the provision allowing reallocation of uncollectible amounts. Under this decision, uncollectible amounts may be reallocated to other parties without regard to whether they are jointly liable.

    Read More  

Showing Results 181 - 200 of 617