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  • IT TOOK ONE DAY!!!!--

    Yesterday, we commented on BREAKING NEWS to tell you that the Michigan Attorney General issued an opinion stating that the Michigan Civil Rights Commission interpreted the Elliot-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA) to include a ban on discriminating against folks based upon their Sexual Orientation and Gender Identification, in short against the LGTBQ community in our state.  At about the same time, the MCRC announced that it was directing the agency to CONTINUE investigating complaints of discrimination based upon orientation and gender identification.  MCRC indicated that it did not believe the AG's opinion was binding on the MCRC because it is a constitutionally authorized body with the power to interpret the laws which it administers.    << Read More

  • Employment Law--Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity--BREAKING NEWS

    BREAKING NEWS!!!  --  It seems that is a headline for everything these days but our latest update on this topic is indeed Breaking News.  When we last visited this topic, we told you that the Michigan Civil Rights Commission (MCRC) had adopted a new policy "interpreting" the Elliot-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA).  That policy was to announce that in its interpretation of the law, the Commission concluded that employment discrimination based upon Sexual Orientation and/or Gender Identity was covered and PROHIBITED by ELCRA.  At the same time, it announced it was accepting complaints based on alleged discrimination in those categories.   << Read More

  • Employment Discrimination Update--Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

    In an earlier blog on this subject, we told you that under existing state law (the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act--ELCRA) did not prohibit discrimination in employment based upon Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity.  We indicated that the state of the law as it existed at that time was likely NOT the final answer to the question of whether a person could be discriminated against in employment situations because he or she was gay, transgender, etc.  It turns out that we were prescient in that assessment.  << Read More

  • Extremism and Employment

    CAN AN EMPLOYEE BE FIRED FOR PUBLISHING EXTREMIST OPINIONS?  << Read More

  • Workplace Firearms Polcies

    Homicide is the 5th leading cause of workplace fatalities in the US.  Gun violence in the workplace is a matter of increasing focus and concern.  At the same time, gun laws in the State of Michigan have "loosened" (for want of a better term) making Michigan a virtual "Shall Issue" state for concealed weapon permits and acknowledging a citizen's "open carry" rights (i.e., you may carry a weapon, such as a pistol in plain sight).  << Read More

  • Is It Discrimination If It Is LGBT Negative?

    Employers are concerned.  It is possible to run afoul of anti-discrimination laws without intending to do so.  Irrespective of one's personal views on LGBT matters, we are often asked "if an employment policy appears to adversely affect gay people i.e. providing separate dressing areas because straight employees demand it" is it discrimination?"  Simply put, employers do not want to violate the law.  << Read More

  • UPDATE FOR VETERANS AND MEMBERS OF THE US MILITARY AND LAW ENFORCEMENT

    SB&R is pleased to announce that effective immediately, all veterans and active-duty members of the US Armed Forces and all serving members of law enforcement will receive a 20% discount from our normal fees on all Estate Planning Services (Wills, Trusts, Patient Advocate Forms, Elder Care Planning , etc.) provided by our firm.  << Read More

  • Beware--New DOL Overtime Regs. Released

    "But I thought they were exempt employees"!!!  The lament of the uninformed HR Director.  The most prominent change in the final changes to overtime regulations by the Dept. of Labor is the increase in the salary level required for for exempt employees.  The new "exempt" level is $47,476 annually ($913/week) to have the status of an, exempt employee.  << Read More

  • Congratulations Gary Schenk

    Congratulations to Gary Schenk, one of our founding partners.  Gary has been recognized again this year by Martindale-Hubbell, the country's leading lawyer assessment (by his peers) and information source, as a "Pre-Eminent AV" lawyer, the highest award for ethics and legal skills.  This rating was given to Gary by his peers in both the Bar and by the Judiciary in a confidential survey of lawyers and Judges.  << Read More

  • Non Compete Agreements - Enforceable

    We are often asked "are non-compete agreements enforceable"?  The problem is, we are usually asked this question when an employee who is subject to a non-compete is leaving his or her employment for "greener pastures".  The notion that said employee might have assigned away his/her right to work in the same industry with the same customers for a period of years is something they simply are unwilling to accept.  << Read More