Employment Litigation

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Coworkers and Their Annoying Habits: Texas employment lawyers

An article published today by Ignites discusses the annoying habits of coworkers according to a poll of mutual fund employees. Although we're not all mutual fund employees, the habits pointed out in the survey are the annoying habits you find across all industries. The worst of the worst was loud phone conversations. A lot of these employees work in jobs where they are on the phones all day or most of the day, so loud conversations of both personal and professional discussions can really interfere with work. If your situation reaches the level of a hostile work environment then you...

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Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas unpaid wage claims and attorney fees

If the calls and emails coming into my office are any indication then there is a growing problem with unpaid wages, minimum wage violations, minimum wage tip violations and unpaid overtime pay here in Texas. I am getting a lot of contacts from people with unpaid wages. The Fair Labor Standards Act and the Texas Payday Law regulate payment of wage in Texas. These laws have duplicate requirements; but the Texas Payday Law adds some additional rules that help ensure employees are paid what they are due. These additional rules include provisions setting out how and when employees must receive paychecks....

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Denton County prevails in racial discrimination appeal: Texas racial discrimination lawyer discusses

Back in 2012, several local Dallas, Fort Worth and Denton media outlets reported a racial discrimination suit involving a prosecutor at the Denton County District Attorney's office and her allegations that an assistant DA, much higher up the food chain, had made racially discriminatory remarks that constituted a hostile work environment. The trial court awarded half a million dollars to the plaintiff and the District Attorney fired the individual who made the comments, his wife and two other lawyers in the office. Denton County appealed the decision to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, who overturned the verdict entirely. How...

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Fort Worth employment lawyer: Supreme Court addresses donning and duffing rule under a collective bargaining agreement

On January 27, 2014 the U.S. Supreme Court addressed a narrow exception to the donning and duffing rule. The exception applies to the terms of a collective bargaining agreement under the National Labor Relations Act. Although this issue will affect few Texas employees, it is an important rule for union employees. It is also a key wage consideration for future collective bargaining agreements. Under the Supreme Court's opinion in Sandifer, employees under a collective bargaining agreement may not receive pay for some or all time spent donning and duffing protective attire. What is the donning and duffing rule Over the past several years courts addressed...

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Dallas employment attorney: Overtime pay with personal leave

Overtime rules under the Fair Labor Standards Act and Texas Payday Law result in  improper wage calculations in employment law. Some employers engage in illegal acts to avoid paying overtime. Many fail to fully understand when they must pay overtime and how the calculation of overtime pay must occur. (For a primer on overtime pay, visit this blog post.) Even well-meaning employers underpay employees by failing to understand the overtime provisions of the FLSA and Texas Payday Law. It is not a defense to an unpaid overtime pay claim that the employer meant to pay what it owed. If you believe...

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2014 IRS Rules for Mandatory Gratuity: Dallas employment lawyers

Beginning January 1, 2014, the IRS began enforcing rules on restaurant mandatory gratuities that will have an impact on both the income of tipped employees and how restaurants can get themselves in hot water with the Department of Labor and/or IRS by misapplying these mandatory gratuities. Restaurants typically charge these mandatory service charges for large parties, which may be as few as six people. The added charge usually ranges from 15-20%. Under Texas and federal employment law, these mandatory gratuities belong to the restaurant; the restaurant is not required to give any portion of that mandatory charge to the employees. (Some...

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FMLA leave medical recertification: Dallas employment lawyers

You request FMLA leave. Your employer requests medical certification. You provide it. Your employer approves your FMLA leave. You take leave. Then, while you are on FMLA leave, your employer is sending you requests for new medical certification? Can your employer do that? The answer is yes, under certain circumstances, your employer can request new medical certification after you are on FMLA leave. These subsequent FMLA medical certification requests are acceptable under the Department of Labor's FMLA regulations. If you have questions about FMLA medical certifications then you should contact a Texas FMLA lawyer right away. However, the DOL's FMLA regulations do...

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FMLA and twelve month period for eligibility: Dallas labor lawyers for FMLA

FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) medical leave is a huge source of employment litigation in Texas and around the nation. One of the major issues in FMLA leave and FMLA litigation is how the employer calculates eligibility for medical leave. FMLA protects medical leave for qualified medical conditions up to twelve weeks within a twelve month period. The Department of Labor recognizes four formulas for calculating FMLA eligibility within the twelve month period. Which formula the employer adopts and how the employer implements that formula can greatly affect the employee's rights under FMLA. That is especially true when the employee has...

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Age Discrimination and Early Retirement Incentives in Texas

Employers who want to thin the herd of highly paid, older employees often offer early retirement incentive packages that trade off an increased pension benefit or severance package in exchange for an employee agreeing to voluntarily retire early. Early retirement is typically offered to a large number of employees before the company decides to engage in a layoff or reduction in force (RIF). Early retirement offers often target older employees. They are most likely to have the most generous pension benefits and highest compensation. Early retirement offers are easy ways to thin out the highest compensated employees in multiple departments without...

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Warning: The Danger of Ignoring Employment Arbitration Agreements in Texas

In the 1990s and early 2000s, a huge swath of employers added mandatory arbitration agreements to their employment applications and shoved arbitration agreement forms in front of their current employees. It was part of a larger push for arbitrating disputes with the idea that arbitration is cheaper than litigation. Over the past decade or so many employers have given up pushing arbitration, although many employers still require arbitration agreements. If you believe you have a claim facing arbitration then you should contact a Fort Worth arbitration lawyer or Dallas arbitration lawyer right away. Arbitration is alternative dispute resolution in which the...

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