1. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit sets a low bar for Title VII retaliation claims. The Seventh Circuit partially reversed the dismissal of a university professor’s suit, finding that she had a “plausible” claim that she was denied tenure in retaliation for filing a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. While her employers argued that the charge was filed after university officials had already made their decision on tenure, the Seventh Circuit said this was precisely the type of factual question that made the claim plausible and entitled the plaintiff’s lawsuit to survive a motion to dismiss. Christopher Farella, from Epstein Becker Green, has more on the challenges of getting a dismissal in a retaliation suit.

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    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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  2. The Ninth Circuit says unapproved use of a former co-worker’s password can be criminal. An ex-recruiting firm employee used a current worker's credentials to gain unauthorized access to a company database. The Ninth Circuit held that this act violated the "without authorization" prong of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, noting that permission for legal access must be given by a computer system’s owner. This decision could have wide-reaching implications in an area of law that has become increasingly criminalized over the past few years. Jim Flynn, from Epstein Becker Green, has more.


    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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  3. Ariel Merkrebs-Finkelstein, Director of Human Resources at HelloFresh, is here with some advice on best practices for developing company culture.

    "It's important for you to establish a strong company culture within your organization, because it will help you attract and retain top talent. One thing you can do is call each other a ‘family’ or a ‘team,’ rather than coworkers or colleagues. This will help you break down the barriers and facilitate conversations more easily. . . . Create opportunities for interacting with one another outside of the formal landscape of the office. This might include something like exercise classes, interactive games like ‘Escape the Room,’ or even just a picnic in a nearby park. . . . I also recommend that you recognize your employees. It's a really great way to make them feel valued, and it's free. So get creative."

    This is a "Tip of the Week" segment from Employment Law This Week® (Episode 36: Week of August 1, 2016), an online series by Epstein Becker Green.

    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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  4. Welcome to Employment Law This Week® ! Subscribe to our channel for new episodes every Monday!

    This week's stories include . . .

    (1) Chamber: Executive Incentive Pay Rule Could Stunt Growth - http://bit.ly/2ai4vjL

    Our top story: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce claims that the new executive incentive pay rule could stunt economic growth. The proposed rule lays out a tiering system for regulating bonus pay for bank executives and other employees in the financial sector. The Chamber’s 26-page letter argues that the rule could deter the best minds from entering the financial sector and discourage economic growth and job creation. The FDIC has said that the letter will be taken into account during the review process. Gretchen Harders, from Epstein Becker Green, has more. http://bit.ly/2afFNRY

    For more information on incentive pay rule, click here: http://bit.ly/2aCkT2N

    (2) Eighth Circuit Rules for Employer in Race Discrimination Suit - http://bit.ly/2ajbYOz

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit upholds an employer’s win in a race discrimination suit. An African-American employee of medical technology company Siemens was terminated as part of a reduction in force. The employee alleged that his selection was race-based, and he provided evidence of racial discrimination by his direct supervisor. The plaintiff claimed that poor evaluations by that supervisor “duped” the service director into firing him. The court found that the supervisor who wrote the evaluations did not know about the workforce reductions and, therefore, could not have intentionally triggered a discriminatory termination.

    (3) Pokémon Go Sparks Privacy Concerns - http://bit.ly/2aaezdQ

    Pokémon Go creates privacy concerns for employers. The first mainstream augmented reality game is sweeping the nation, and the game never stops, even during work hours. Despite a recent update to the game that reduces its access to players’ Google accounts, Pokémon Go’s data collection practices are under fire from privacy advocates. This week, the Electronic Privacy Information Center joined the fray, calling for the Federal Trade Commission to investigate security risks associated with the game. In light of the popularity of the game, employers should consider adding more detail to their policies about how and where business mobile devices can be used.

    For more on the privacy concerns with Pokémon Go, click here: http://bit.ly/2aCkY6J

    (4) Michigan’s High Court Changes Standard for Commercial Non-Competes - http://bit.ly/2auKwlf

    The “rule of reason” standard applies to commercial non-competes in Michigan, the state’s highest court says. Innovation Ventures contracted with a manufacturing plant to produce and package the “5-Hour ENERGY” drink. After the relationship was terminated, the plant began to produce competing energy drinks. Innovation Ventures argued that this action violated a non-compete clause in its termination agreement. Lower courts found that the clause was unenforceable under a provision in the Michigan Antitrust Reform Act (MARA). On appeal, the Michigan Supreme Court remanded the case, ruling that the MARA provision applies only to non-competes between employers and employees and that the federal “rule of reason” standard should be applied to commercial non-competes in Michigan.


    (5) Tip of the Week - http://bit.ly/2aifY7U

    Ariel Merkrebs-Finkelstein, Director of Human Resources at HelloFresh, is here with some advice on best practices for developing company culture.

    "It's important for you to establish a strong company culture within your organization, because it will help you attract and retain top talent. One thing you can do is call each other a ‘family’ or a ‘team,’ rather than coworkers or colleagues. This will help you break down the barriers and facilitate conversations more easily. . . . Create opportunities for interacting with one another outside of the formal landscape of the office. This might include something like exercise classes, interactive games like ‘Escape the Room,’ or even just a picnic in a nearby park. . . . I also recommend that you recognize your employees. It's a really great way to make them feel valued, and it's free. So get creative."


    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. EMPLOYMENT LAW THIS WEEK® is a registered trademark of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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  5. Annette Guarisco Fildes, President and CEO of The ERISA Industry Committee, has some advice on state mandates for employee benefits.

    “Paid sick leave, parental leave, state retirement programs, vaccine mandates, and other measures are being proposed almost daily by states and localities across the country. This really complicates matters for employers that want to offer uniform benefits to their employees across the country and adds to the already complex burden of complying with federal rules and regulations. . . . Take the time to review the new rules and weigh in with trade groups, lobbyists, and others who can shape the rules on your behalf to make it easier to comply and lower costs. When advocating for your organization, keep the best solutions in mind. This may mean going beyond state approaches to a federal one that would support uniform benefits nationwide. And finally, recognize that you are not alone. Other employers face these challenges as well, and trusted counsel can keep you informed and compliant.”

    Visit EmploymentLawThisWeek.com.

    These materials have been provided for informational purposes only and are not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. The content of these materials is copyrighted to Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. ATTORNEY ADVERTISING.

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Employment Law This Week®

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Welcome to Employment Law This Week®, presented by Epstein Becker Green. This online video program – among the first of its kind in the legal industry – tracks the latest developments that could impact you and your workforce. The series features three…


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Welcome to Employment Law This Week®, presented by Epstein Becker Green. This online video program – among the first of its kind in the legal industry – tracks the latest developments that could impact you and your workforce. The series features three components: Trending News, Deep Dives, and Monthly Rundowns. Learn more at ebglaw.com/employment-law-this-week/

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