On February 28, 2014, a Massachusetts court dismissed a discrimination claim brought by three employees against a nursing home base in part on the employer’s detailed investigation and written record of discipline. The case Metelus v. Wingate Healthcare, Inc., demonstrates the importance of thorough and well documented investigations and discipline.
What You Need To Know. When faced with a discrimination claim, employers need evidence showing how employees were treated fairly and consistently. A thorough investigation into employee misconduct and well documented disciplinary warnings will help significantly if a court has to review a termination.
In the Metelus case, three nursing assistants were terminated for refusing a supervisor’s request that they work on another floor to meet patient demand. The nursing assistants threatened to walk off the job if ordered to change floors. Instead of disciplining the three employees on the spot, Wingate’s Nursing Director promptly conducted a thorough investigation. Continue reading →
On October 22, 2013, the United States District Court in Boston issued a decision discussing who is the “employer” in a multi-party employment situation. The case, Blanco v. United Comb and Novelty Corporation, involves allegations that employees were not properly paid overtime and is discussed below.
What You Need To Know. Obtaining labor through a staffing company or through a separate corporate entity will not shield you from wage and hour violations involving the people who do your company’s work. Even if a company is not technically responsible for the wage and hour violation as an employer, the company may be held responsible for aiding and abetting if it is aware that workers are not being paid their proper wages. Accordingly, a company should make sure all workers performing services for it are being properly paid under state and federal wage and hour laws.
In the case, Isidoro Blanco worked for United Comb through a staffing agency. Blanco brought suit against multiple companies alleging violation of state and federal wage laws. Continue reading →