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June 2013 Eupdate

July 1, 2013

The Supreme Court Limits Employer Liability for Harassment Claims Under Title VII By Narrowing the Definition of "Supervisor"

In Vance v. Ball State University, the Supreme Court held that an employee is a “supervisor” for purposes of employer liability under Title VII “only if he or she is empowered by the employer to take tangible employment actions against the victim.”

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High Court Takes Step Toward Curbing Retaliation Claims

In the last week of June, the Supreme Court issued a decision that will likely reduce the number of retaliation claims filed against employers. 

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Supreme Court Strikes Down Key Provisions in DOMA, Impacting Employment Laws

On June 26, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court held that provisions of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) defining “marriage” and “spouse” as excluding same-sex relationships were unconstitutional.

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Supreme Court Suggests That Class Claims May Be Arbitrated

In Oxford Health Plans v. Sutter, a unanimous Supreme Court upheld an arbitrator’s ruling that a doctor who entered into a fee-for-service contract with Oxford Health Plans could proceed under the contract with class action arbitration, despite their contract being silent on class arbitration. 

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Failure to Follow FMLA's Recertification Procedures Dooms Summary Judgment for Employer

A recent decision from the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin emphasizes the importance of following the procedures set for in the FMLA’s regulations when substantiating whether an absence is FMLA qualifying.

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Final Rules for Employer Wellness Programs Issued

The federal government issued final regulations on employer wellness programs under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), which are largely consistent with the proposed rules issued in November 2012.  Effective for plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2014, the final regulations apply to fully insured, self-insured and both grandfathered and non-grandfathered health plans. 

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