Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Pro-Employee Steps of the Obama Administration

Obama is starting to make his presence felt by everyone. First, the stimulus plans now, the signing of Ledbetter Bill into law.

Ledbetter Bill was drafted to overturn the Supreme Court’s decision in the case of Ledbetter vs. Goodyear Tire and Rubber. In this case, the court ruled that lawsuits over race or gender discrimination could no longer be filed if claims were based on a previous decisions made by them 180 days ago or more.

The Supreme Court rejected the continuing violations doctrine pursued by Ledbetter.

In this new law, employees could now file a discrimination claim regardless if the incident happened 180 days ago or more. The law removed the time limit and the case can now be filed notwithstanding the staleness of evidence or death of witnesses.

Certainly, this new law would trigger more litigation against employers as the passage of it is retroactive. This also serves as a wakeup call for employers to be fair and impartial to all their employees.

After the Ledbetter Bill comes the Paycheck Fairness Act. Under this Act, employers were asked to meet certain standards on wage structures. Such that wage disparities were due not to sex or race but solely job related.

We’ll just wait and see how employers react to this another pro-employee law.