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The Supreme Court Upholds “Obamacare”

On June 28, 2012, the Supreme Court upheld “Obamacare” (officially known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010).  National Federation of Independent Business et al. v. Sebelius, No. 11-393 (June 28, 2012).   In a 5 to 4 decision, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote that the law is constitutional as an exercise of […]

Maryland Bans Employer Access To Employee Social Media

By Clifford B. Geiger Maryland became the first state to pass a law prohibiting employers from asking job applicants and employees for their usernames and passwords to social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.  This move comes on the heels of an Associated Press investigation that detailed how many employers, including the  Maryland Department […]

Due Process Claims In The Fourth Circuit

The Fourth Circuit recently reiterated the standards by which constitutional due process claims are to be evaluated in the context of a governmental employee’s demotion. Hall v. City of Newport News, et al. (No. 10-1653, March 14, 2012). The facts in Hall are fairly straightforward. Hall, a police officer with the city of Newport News, […]

Private Attorney Retained By City Entitled To Qualified Immunity

The Supreme Court recently ruled that a private attorney retained by a local government to conduct an employee investigation was entitled to the same immunity available to government employees.  The decision ensures that private individuals retained by governmental units need not worry – in most cases – about being sued in their individual capacities. Filarsky, […]

Voting For African-American Candidate Is Not Protected Status Under Title VII,

A federal court in Nevada recently rejected a race discrimination claim based upon allegations that the plaintiff was fired after voting for African-American presidential candidate Barack Obama.  Whitfield v. Trade Show Servs. Ltd., Civil Action No.:  2:10-CV-00905-LRH-VCF (D. Nev. Mar. 1, 2012).  William Whitfield started working as an account manager for security firm Trade Show […]

District Court for Maryland Holds that Bi-Polar Employee Not Qualified Individual with Disability

On February 28, 2012, the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland dismissed a claim by a former Maryland Department of Agriculture worker under federal and state law that the Department failed to accommodate his disability and terminated him because of his disability.  Higgins v. Maryland Dep’t of Agric., No. 11-0081 (D. Md., February […]

Donning/Doffing Is Still Work in the Fourth Circuit

Back in June, I wrote about Mountaire Farms, Inc. v. Perez, 650 F.3d 350 (4th Cir. 2011).  In that case, the Fourth Circuit affirmed a district court ruling that held that time spent by chicken processing plant workers donning and doffing their protective gear was “work,” and therefore compensable, under the Fair Labor Standards Act.  […]