Protecting Employers Since 1985

Some Minnesota Businesses Allowed to Resume Operations

By Wessels Sherman / May 27, 2020

Governor Walz issued Executive Order 20-56 authorizing some businesses to reopen provided that they comply with OSHA, MDH, and CDC guidelines. The Order went into effect on May 17, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. and remains in effect until May 31, 2020. Reopened non-critical business must establish and implement a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan that provides for…

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OSHA Issues Guidance on Recording COVID-19 Cases

By Wessels Sherman / May 25, 2020

On May 19, 2020, OSHA issued an Enforcement Guidance on recording cases of alleged Coronavirus illnesses in the workplace. Given the difficulty of establishing the causation of many alleged work-related illnesses, and these unprecedented times, this Guidance should prove helpful. According to OSHA, COVID-19 is a recordable illness if: The case is a confirmed case…

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New Federal Covid-19 Legislation And Its Dramatic Impact On Independent Contractor Status: How Have Things Changed?

By Wessels Sherman / May 21, 2020

The independent contractor “legal world” is quickly transforming in many ways! It is hard to keep up with the flood of new laws and court cases impacting independent contractor status on both the Federal and State levels. FEDERAL COVID-19 LEGISLATION AFFECTING INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS: Recently Congress passed two major bills (signed into law by President Trump)…

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Illinois Companies Using Independent Contractors Must Now Handle IDES Notices of Claims: What Should Illinois Companies Do?

By Nancy E. Joerg / May 7, 2020

We now know the basic outline of how the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) will process independent contractor unemployment insurance claims. The IDES issued a press release on May 5, 2020 about 1099 workers who have lost work due to COVID-19. The IDES press release states: “Workers who believe they may be eligible for…

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Suburban Chicago Security Guard Sues His Employer For Allegedly Refusing To Allow Him To Wear A COVID-19 Protective Facemask At Work

By James B. Sherman / April 30, 2020

In what may be among the first of many legal disputes arising out of the Coronavirus crisis, an employee in Illinois has filed a lawsuit against the suburban hospital where he worked as a security guard. The plaintiff, Marvell Moody, is alleging that his supervisor berated him for wearing a face mask while working as…

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Employers in the COVID-19 Era Need to Have a Good Grasp on Unemployment Insurance Issues: Things are Changing Fast!

By Nancy E. Joerg / April 27, 2020

UNDERSTANDING THE UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE SYSTEM IN AMERICA: Unemployment insurance benefits in the United States started in Wisconsin in 1932. Then came the Social Security Act of 1935 in which the U.S. Federal government encouraged individual states to adopt unemployment insurance plans. In today’s world, the unemployment insurance system across America is run differently in each…

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Coronavirus Layoffs Result In Class Action WARN Act Lawsuit

By James B. Sherman / April 23, 2020

In what may be the first of many to follow, Hooters restaurant chain was hit with a proposed class action lawsuit alleging WARN Act violations. The lawsuit was brought in federal court by two employees on behalf of all employees in Florida whom Hooters allegedly failed to provide with 60 days advance written notice of…

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OSHA Issues Guidance for Recordkeeping of COVID-19 in the Workplace

By Anthony J. Caruso Jr. / April 14, 2020

On April 13, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued interim guidance for enforcing OSHA’s recordkeeping requirements as it relates to recording cases of COVID-19. Employers are responsible for recording cases of COVID-19 if the case: Is confirmed as a COVID-19 illness; Is work-related as defined by the regulations;…

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The Latest from the IDES Regarding Independent Contractors: What Has Changed in the COVID-19 Era?

By Nancy E. Joerg / April 14, 2020

As I write this article in the COVID-19 era with the purpose of assisting Illinois companies who use independent contractors, things are moving rapidly in terms of new federal laws, regulations and state guidelines. Changes are occurring at the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) with shocking speed! NEW REGULATIONS AND GUIDELINES CHANGING ALMOST WEEKLY:…

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COVID-19 and Unions

By Richard H. Wessels / April 14, 2020

COVID-19 is about the only subject being discussed at Wessels Sherman these days. Of course, there are some exceptions, but COVID-19 is the 800-pound gorilla! While most legal commentaries on COVID-19 focus on minutiae of legislation and regulations, for this commentary we are going to focus on practical information and solutions. And, we will do…

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