Labor and Employment Law

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Provisions of the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993

The law requires that the covered employers provide employees with job security and unpaid leave for medical and family reasons. The Act permits employees to attend to family emergencies such as foster care and pregnancy-related cases that keep an individual away from his/her place of work. The Act balances the workplace and family needs by providing special clauses that protect and promote work-family relations.

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The Act applies to firms employing 50 workers or more, who reside within a 75- mile radius of the organization and who have worked in the firm for at least 1250 hours. In addition, it covers public and private sector employees’ unpaid leave for 12 weeks at any given period within the 12-month business cycle. Further, it protects employees from retaliatory actions by the employers and ensures functional benefits schemes throughout the leave period. That is, upon return from the leave, the employee should retain his/her workstation or its equivalent in the case that the organization placed another employee in the position (Pfadenhauer, 2012).

Evaluation of Case A in relation to the Act

In this case, the employee A meets the minimum threshold of 1250 working hours, and the company employs 75 workers. Employee A’s leave was legitimate considering that his spouse gave birth prematurely to twins and his request to return to work in the 11th week of the leave is within the provisions of the Act. Withholding the employee’s benefits did not violate the Act. According to the Act, the employee is entitled to all of his/her benefits before the leave and restoration to the same position with the same pay and responsibilities. In this case, the employee retained his docket, and he returned within the 12 weeks leave period provided for in the Act.

There was no violation, and he is entitled to full benefits after resuming his duties. He is not entitled to basic pay during the leave, but the firm should provide him with any non-salary benefit(s) since the leave is valid and covered by the Act.

Evaluation of Age Discrimination in Employment Act [ADEA] of 1967

The Act ensures transparent relations between the employers and employees with respect to wages, hiring process, layoffs and termination of employment, promotions and age discrimination in employment. For instance, the Act prohibits advertisements of age preference and limitations and denial of benefits to the aged employees. It also defines out the mandatory age limits for employment and benefits across industries and the positions occupied by an individual. Schneid (2012) observes that the majority of ADEA’s clauses apply to firms with 20 or more employees and to the industries that influence commerce in a country.

Analysis of case B in relation to ADEA

There was a violation of ADEA in case B. In this situation, employer B is 68 years old, and though his performance review indicated “above average,” he/she is above the permitted age of 65 years. In this case, the management’s decision to refuse him/her a promotion finds its strength from the assumption that the company is not in high policy-making category as provided for by the Act. The fact that the company refused the employee a promotion due to age was within the provision of the Act that provides for non-discrimination in promotions and employment of individuals within the age of 40 years and above.

In this case and assuming that the firm does not fall in the high policy-making category of industries, the employee ought to have retired and s/he is entitled to reduced benefits and has low chances of promotion. Though the co-worker who was 32 years old got the promotion, the Act provides that in cases of reduced benefits or denial of promotion on the basis of age, the firm justifies the opportunity cost of the decision on the basis of the benefit(s) to the organization and the parties involved. For instance, an employer can apply the age limit clause to reduce benefits if the placement cost and promotions enhance tactical transitions across all departments.

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In this case, a violation or non-violation aspect should be gauged on the employees’ performance reviews with respect to the firm’s missions and the job requirements of the position in question. The fact that the promoted employee received an “adequate” compared to employee B’s “above average” performance review justifies management’s decision if they can show the equality in the cost of providing the benefits as indicated in the Act. In addition, though employee B was above the average limit of 65 years and in relation to Bona Fide Occupational Qualification [BFOQ] provisions; the decision would apply if public safety is at stake.

Evaluation of Americans with Disabilities Act [ADA] of 1990

The Act sought to prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability and required employers to provide reasonable accommodation and accessibility requirements to all disabled employees. In a broader perspective, it prohibits racial and sexual/gender discrimination and recognizes physical and mental medical conditions in its evaluation of disabilities. ADA covers entities with 15 or more employees and requires employers to observe non-discriminatory procedures in hiring, training, discharge terms of employees and other working conditions irrespective of individual’s physical and mental ability as long as he/she qualifies. In addition, the act elaborates on real and perceived limitations and their respective treatments on non-segregation and harassment (Gold, 2011).

Analysis of case C in relation to the Act

In this case, there was a violation in situation C. In the case description, it is evident that the applicant qualified and that the firm refused him/her an opportunity based on physical disability. Firstly, the company’s structural blueprint fails to cover the individual movement needs and the working environment for people with disabilities. Altering two of the four elevator cars would not be expensive to the company considering the statutory requirement for individuals with special needs.

This alteration would also cater for other subsequent application cases. According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission regulations, individual statuses do not need to be permanent to qualify for a disability response but the condition justifies the case. In addition, applicant C’s status did not warrant for direct primary help from any of the firm’s employees. Therefore, it alleviates the “undue hardship” claims by the company. The fact that the applicant did not require special equipment from the company to do his/her job, it is clear that the company denied the applicant an opportunity based on physical disability rather than his/her competence.

Finally, the company segregated the applicant on the basis of real perceptions that did not influence his/her output. Furthermore, by letting the applicant know the reasons for denial, which directly touched on physical disability rather than particular inability to do the job, contravened the segregation and harassment clauses provided for in the Act (Keller & Associates, 2011).

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References

Gold, S. D. (2011). Americans with Disabilities Act. New York: Marshall Cavendish Benchmark.

Keller, J. J & Associates. (2011). Working with the ADA: Understanding the employment provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Neenah, Wis: J.J. Keller & Associates, Inc.

Pfadenhauer, D. M. (2012). The employer’s guide to the Family and Medical Leave Act. Northport, NY: Datamotion Pub.

Schneid, T. D. (2012). Discrimination law issues for the safety professional. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

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