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May 2018 Archives

Supreme Court Ruling - Police Need Warrants for Driveway Searches

Legal precedent is reasoning by analogy. Step by step the law develops. In the 1950s-70s, the Supreme Court expanded the Fourth Amendment to limit police power and preserve freedom. In the 1980s until about six years ago, the Court ruled often in favor of the police and contracted the Amendment. We are now seeing a shift in the tide towards civil liberties.

Is Michigan State's Nassar Settlement Fake News for Some Survivors?

On May 16, 2018, Michigan State University announced that after several rounds of mediation, they had reached a "$500 million global settlement" on behalf of survivors of disgraced former MSU doctor Larry Nassar. The terms stated that $425 million would be paid to the 332 current claimants, and $75 million would be set aside for future claimants. Here is a copy of the May 16, 2018, Press Release

Fairness to women in the workplace

We have been representing moms for more than twenty years.  The human lifecycle is multifaceted.  We have periods when we are more focused on our health and loved ones and periods when we are more focused on our jobs.  Under the law, to keep our jobs, we always need to perform the "essential functions of our jobs" even if we need "reasonable accommodation".  (See Americans With Disabilities Act)
Companies used to discriminate against pregnant women by denying them "light duty" when they needed it for the safety of their unborn child, even when they offered that option to employees with workplace injuries.  Nick Roumel won a case in the Sixth Circuit on behalf of a pregnant employee changing the law on this point.  The Supreme Court later ratified the decision in a separate case, Young v. UPS. 
 
We still have vestiges of what constitutes a "normal" workplace life without reference to women who bear children. While fairness to other employees who don't have children has sometimes raised an objection to altering the norm, we don't raise those concerns when we keep employed people who have accidents resulting in injuries.
Our firm remains committed to expanding the US workplace to accommodate all people as they actually live their lives, with injuries, illnesses, grieving, bearing children, parenting them and aging.
Here's an interesting article I recently read in the NY Times, "The Open Secret of Anti-Bias at Work" by Katherine Goldstein. 

Job Applications and your Criminal Past

The Detroit Lions recently found themselves in the midst of a firestorm when it was discovered that their new football coach, Matt Patricia, had been arrested in 1996 for a felony sexual assault. All charges were dropped before trial, and the case was dismissed. Nonetheless, questions were raised about Patricia's fitness for the job, and the thoroughness of the Lions' background check.

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