Hiring and Firing Employees

It is the age old problem:  managers want to act quickly, HR and legal professionals want to move slowly and carefully.  Most managers make staffing and disciplinary decisions without fully appreciating the legal issues implicated by their actions, including their own exposure to personal liability.  In their article “Hiring and Firing,” Hollie Reiminger and Larry Stuart detail issues managers and HR professionals should consider when making personnel decisions.  Click here for a copy of the article.

Managing Employees Who Have Medical Issues (May 2013)

With an older working population and more Americans being diagnosed and treated for medical and psychological issues, employers have their hands full navigating the requirements of the ADA, FMLA, workers’ comp, and unique state law rules and requirements.  Larry Stuart gave a presentation at the HR Houston Gulf Coast Symposium on Human Resources Issues entitled “Out Sick, or Sick of Work?  Managing Employees With Medical Issues” during which he educated HR professionals about recent legal developments and best practices relating to the handling of employees with medical limitations that impact work.  Click here for a copy of the presentation.

Employment Law Boot Camp

Larry Stuart conducted an “Employment Law Boot Camp” for managers attending the Association of Energy Services Companies (AESC) annual safety conference in Fort Worth, Texas.  The workshop provided practical insight for managers about legal standards applicable to employers in the energy sector and best practices to reduce legal risk.  Contact Larry for presentation materials.

Decision in Brown et al. v. Offshore Specialty Febricators, Inc. et al.

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its decision in Brown et al. v. Offshore Specialty Fabricators, Inc. et al., No. 10-40936, affirming dismissal of all claims against all defendants by Judge David Folsom of the Eastern District of Texas. The case was a putative class action brought against companies that provide services in connection with oil and gas projects in the Gulf of Mexico, and companies that provide labor in connection with same. Plaintiffs claimed defendants violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) and the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) by allegedly employing unauthorized foreign workers on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf. Larry Stuart served as lead counsel for two of the defendant companies in the underlying case, with Glen Rigby serving as lead counsel in connection with the appeal. Click here for the 5th Circuit’s Opinion.

Victory in Buhr v. Stewart Title of Spokane, LLC et al

Stuart & Associates P.C. and Paine Hamblen LLP secured a defense verdict following ten days of trial in Spokane, Washington. The plaintiff claimed violations of the Washington Law Against Discrimination, the Washington Minimum Wage Act and Wage Rebate Act, among other claims, and asked the jury to award more than $2.5 million in damages during closing argument. Larry Stuart and Jim Kalamon served as trial counsel, with critical support from Tonja King and Brook Cunningham. Buhr v. Stewart Title of Spokane, LLC et al, No. 09-2-04455-9, Washington Superior Court, County of Spokane.

Auditing Compensation Practices

Larry Stuart and Glen Rigby gave a presentation entitled “Auditing Compensation Practices” at HR Houston’s 2011 Gulf Coast Symposium on Human Resource Issues. Larry and Glen provided practical insight on why employers should conduct compensation audits and how those audits should be conducted. Click here for Presentation Slides.

The New Bermuda Triangle

Larry Stuart and Tonja King gave a presentation entitled “The New Bermuda Triangle: ADA/FMLA/GINA” at HR Houston’s 2011 Gulf Coast Symposium on Human Resource Issues. Larry and Tonja gave an update on recent development relating to management of employees needing time off and/or accommodations for medical issues and provided practical information on how to manage employees with medical issues to reduce risk of claims. Click here for Presentation Slides.

Victory in Dugas et al. v. Oceaneering Int’l, Inc. et al.

Larry Stuart and Cheri Thomas secured summary dismissal and final judgment in favor of the firm’s client in a Title VII case in which the plaintiffs – a former employee and an employee of a contractor – claimed they were subjected to racial harassment by the crew of a chartered vessel while working in the Gulf of Mexico. Dugas et al. v. Oceaneering Int’l, Inc. et al., No. H-09-1725, District Court for the Southern District of Texas.

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