It should come as no surprise that the masking debate continues to heat up. In the past week, news outlets and social media platforms have been abuzz about face mask exemption cards.
In 2015, long before COVID-19 emerged, a hospital disciplined and discharged a recruiter in its HR department who refused to obtain a hospital-required influenza vaccination or to don a mask at work as an alternative. In a case we started to track three years ago, a federal judge entered summary judgment for the employer this week.
It’s time for our annual holiday season blog on the status of arbitration agreement enforceability in Missouri.
Arbitration agreements have faced tackles and turbulence in a series of cases litigated in Missouri courts over the past few years. In the fall of 2017, the Supreme Court of Missouri issued two favorable arbitration agreement decisions: one involved an aviation school, the other arose from a training facility lease with the Rams football team, which has since left Missouri for California and was previously involved in a different arbitration-related case in Missouri.
Flu season is coming, and healthcare (and other) organizations may be asking whether they should have mandatory flu vaccine policies. If an employer decides to implement a mandatory program, the next question is how to administer it.
The end of the year is an opportune time for employers to make sure their noncompete and arbitration agreements are still valid. A recent Missouri federal court decision underscores how difficult it can be to enforce those agreements against at-will employees in Missouri.
In Pittman v. Cook Paper Recycling Corp., WD 77973 (Mo. App. W.D. Oct. 27, 2015) a divided panel of the Missouri Court of Appeals for the Western District affirmed the dismissal of an employee’s claim of discrimination based on sexual orientation under the Missouri Human Rights Act (MHRA). The majority opinion held Missouri law does not prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation. However, the court left open the possibility that future claims may be brought by plaintiffs who specifically allege discrimination based on gender stereotyping. Relying on recent interpretations of federal law by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the dissent opined that Missouri law does prohibit sexual orientation discrimination because the MHRA makes it unlawful to discriminate based on “sex.”
Missouri courts have issued several decisions interpreting arbitration agreements between employers and employees. While some of these agreements have been enforced, others have been struck down. The Missouri Court of Appeals invalidated two employment arbitration agreements in January and July, allowing both employees to pursue their discrimination claims in court. But, in the interim, the Missouri Supreme Court upheld an arbitration agreement, compelling an employee to arbitrate his age discrimination lawsuit.
Arbitration agreements have been a roller coaster for Missouri employers. Recently, in State ex rel. Hewitt v. Kerr, the Missouri Supreme Court enforced such an agreement, sending an employee’s discrimination lawsuit to arbitration. But overall, courts in Missouri have restricted the enforceability of arbitration agreements entered into between employees and employers. This month, the Missouri Court of Appeals continued that trend in Bowers v. Asbury St. Louis Lex, LLC, No. ED102229 (July 7, 2015). In Bowers, the court analyzed an arbitration agreement, which included a clause that purportedly allowed the employer to modify the agreement unilaterally and retroactively.
In recent years, Missouri courts have seemed reluctant to enforce arbitration agreements entered into between employers and employees. But in a recent decision, the Missouri Supreme Court reversed that trend and compelled arbitration of an employee’s age-discrimination claim.
The Missouri Court of Appeals rang in the New Year by issuing an opinion that continues the trend in Missouri of restricting the enforceability of arbitration clauses. In light of this decision, employers should revisit their arbitration agreements to determine whether they are still enforceable under Missouri law.
Still looking for a New Year’s resolution? The Missouri Court of Appeals rang in 2015 by refusing to enforce an arbitration agreement between an employer and an employee. The decision continues the robust trend in Missouri of restricting the enforceability of arbitration clauses. If your company has an arbitration agreement…..
This summer, the Missouri Supreme Court issued a decision that will affect arbitration agreements relied on by employers across the state. The decision—one of many in a recent trend of Missouri cases restricting the enforceability of arbitration clauses—serves as a cautious reminder for employers to continue asking a critical question:…..