Site Map - Legal Issues

Drug testing

- In South Carolina, employees become ineligible for unemployment benefits if fired for failing a drug test. A new state law (formerly A.B. 50) requires an employer to prove that it followed certain procedures before firing an employee for failing a drug test. If the company cannot offer such proof, the employee will not be disqualified from receiving unemployment benefits.

Tax credits

- A bill (S. 2052) introduced by Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) would provide a security-related tax credit for businesses that sell agricultural chemicals or manufacture, formulate, or distribute certain pesticides. The tax credit would be for 30 percent of the costs for protecting those chemicals and would expire in 2010. S. 2052 has three cosponsors and has been referred to the Senate Finance Committee.

Chemical weapons

- The House Homeland Security Committee has approved a bill (H.R. 3197) that would regulate the purchase of ammonium nitrate. The provision must now be taken up by the House of Representatives.

Premises liability

- An Illinois appellate court has ruled that a tenant who was raped outside her apartment may sue her landlord for inadequate security.

McConnell Recants

- Stronger surveillance law not used to spy on German jihadists.

Americans with Disabilities Act

- A federal court has determined that a man who has filed more than 400 lawsuits against companies for violating the American’s with Disabilities Act is a vexatious litigant and will not be allowed to file further claims. The man, who is handicapped, visited businesses—some of them hundreds of miles from his home—and then claimed to have been injured by doorways that were too small. (Molski v. Mandarin Touch Restaurant, U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, No. CV 040450 ER, 2007)

Email Privacy

- E-mail accounts stored by an Internet service provider carry the expectation of privacy, ruled a federal appeals court. The government must obtain a warrant or tell the e-mail account’s owner a subpoena has been issued for that information.

Legal Issues

- A court rules that a business owner should have increased security because of gangs on his property. Plus, legislation on identity theft, aviation security, and discrimination.

Sex Discrimination

- A federal appeals court has ruled that a woman suing her former employer for sex and pregnancy discrimination may pursue her claim even though the company replaced her with another female employee. The employee, ruled the court, need not show that she was replaced by a male employee to establish a case of sex discrimination, previously a requirement under case law. (Miles v. Dell, Inc., U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, No. 04-2500, 2005)

Negligent Misrepresentation

- A New Jersey court has ruled that an employer who chooses to give references on former employees can be held liable for misleading references.

Legal Report

- Negligent hiring. An Illinois appellate court has ruled that a national organization established to help children cannot be held responsible for the sexual abuse of a child at its Chicago location. The court ruled that the organization had no responsibility to protect children from harm.

First responders

- A bill (H.R. 1646) introduced by Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA) would dedicate certain radio frequencies for use by first responders and public service agencies. The Federal Communications Commission would have to dedicate some existing frequencies and assign new frequencies for this use by January 1, 2007.

Transportation security

- The Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee held hearings on a proposed transportation security bill (S. 1052) that would require the Homeland Security Department to establish a task force to conduct a vulnerability and risk assessment of freight and passenger rail transportation systems

Beyond Print

SM Online

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