Acho Speaks to MDAHU

On March 28, 2019 Jim Acho spoke to over 100 members of the Metro Detroit Association of Health Underwriters (MDAHU) regarding the effects of the legalization of marijuana in Michigan and how it affects employers and employment law at large.  His presentation provided valuable information that gave members a better understanding of the new law and also strategies on how employers can best guide their workplace in this new era […]

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Important New Changes to Michigan’s Paid Medical Leave Act

Effective March 29, 2019 the Paid Medical Leave Act (PMLA) will allow eligible part time employees to receive one hour of paid medical leave for every 35 hours worked. To be eligible for the leave the employee must have worked a minimum of 25 hours per week during the preceding calendar year. The leave time must be used for personal or family health needs or purposes related to sexual assault […]

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Legal or Not, Michigan Employers Can Still Fire You for Smoking Pot

On Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018, Michigan voters elected by a margin of 56% to 42% to have Michigan become the 10th state in the country to legalize recreational marijuana use. By mid-December, a Michigan resident will be able to grow their own marijuana plants and smoke marijuana in the comfort of their own home. But what does this mean for employers who want to guard against having employees under the influence […]

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Definition of Gender Discrimination Expanded

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals (the Federal Appeals Court which includes Michigan) recently reviewed the firing of a male funeral home director transitioning to female. Ms. Stephens was fired after she advised the funeral home owner, Mr. Rost, that she was intending to live as a woman including utilizing a female name, dressing in women’s clothing and using the women’s restroom. Litigation was filed against the funeral home by […]

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Think Before You Joke

They say “laughter is the best medicine,” and it’s true. Studies show that laughing boosts immunity, eases anxiety and stress, improves mood, and decreases pain. Socially, laughing strengthens relationships. In addition to the value of humor in our personal lives, we cannot underestimate the power of humor at work. Humor increases our ability to persuade others and helps us diffuse conflict. In simple terms: laughing feels good, and because of […]

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Cautionary Tale – Employee’s Profanity Laced Facebook Post is Protected Activity in a Recent Federal Court Decision

On April 21, 2017, the Second Circuit Court of appeals in NLRB v. Pier Sixty, LLC, 855 F.3d 115 (2nd Cir. 2017), upheld the National Labor Relations Board’s conclusion that a terminated employee’s profanity based comments about his supervisor on Facebook were not so egregious as to exceed protection under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA or Act). Pier Sixty operates a catering company in New York City.  In 2011, […]

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A Few Common Reminders of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows an eligible employee to take an unpaid, job-protected leave for a specified family and medical reason with continuation of group health insurance coverage under the same terms and conditions as if the employee had not taken leave.  A few of the common points of FMLA that may be forgotten by the employer are outlined below. Can the employer have communications with the employee […]

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Grant Obtains Dismissals on behalf of Judge and Prosecutor

Greg Grant, an attorney in our Traverse City office, recently obtained dismissals on behalf of a Northern Michigan judge and prosecutor in two separate civil rights cases. In both cases, the courts awarded his clients all of their attorney fees and costs. Mr. Grant aggressively defends judges, attorneys, and municipalities as a regular part of his practice. Greg Grant focuses his practice on municipal law, employment and labor law, insurance defense, […]

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Municipal Immunity under the Family and Medical Leave Act

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) was enacted, in part, “to balance the demands of the workplace with the needs of families…in a manner that accommodates the legitimate interests of employers…” 29 USC 2601(b). The Act entitles eligible employees to take leave: (A) Because of the birth of a son or daughter of the employee and in order to care for such son or daughter. (B) Because of the placement of […]

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Occupational Safety and Health Act: New Rules for Injury and Illness Reporting

The workplace environment is governed by the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA).  The United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently issued a final order that will require employers and many high-hazard industries to electronically submit injury and illness data to OSHA.  Such reporting is already required to be tracked, but the reporting aspect of such injury or illness is what is new. The new rule […]

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