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Nutley Law Blog

Venue: An important consideration in wrongful termination cases

The "venue" of a case is the legal term for where a lawsuit is physically heard, and it can have big implications for the future of your wrongful termination lawsuit. When working with your attorney, the decision about where to file your case may be one of the most important decisions you face because it can give you a strategic advantage. For that exact reason, your choice may also be energetically challenged by the defense—who probably has a good idea of where they would prefer to have the case heard, if at all possible.

Wrongful termination lawsuits often have a choice of venues, simply because more than one court may be able to claim jurisdiction, which is the legal right to hear the case and make decisions about it.

Off-label drug use can lead to death

Two doctors have lost their jobs, 16 offices were investigated, and the entire state of New Jersey was given an alert about the off-label use of a painkiller simply because one person died while using the drug.

Is this an overreaction to one accidental death? Probably not. However, the fact that the drug in question happened to be a powerful opiate that ended up killing a young, healthy woman instead of an anti-psychotic that was being given off-label to an elderly dementia patient probably contributed to the attention given to this particular case. The overuse of narcotic prescriptions has become a hot issue, politically and medically.

Understanding how the law protects workers from sexual harassment

While we would like to think otherwise, the unfortunate reality is that workers across New Jersey are routinely subjected to conduct on the part of their employers that could perhaps best be characterized as demeaning, dehumanizing or demoralizing.   

Compounding this all too real problem is the fact that many workers either don't know or don't believe that they have any manner of protection under either state or federal law. Indeed, this is often true when it comes to the omnipresent problem of sexual harassment.

Trucking giant reaches settlement with EEOC over religious discrimination claims

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission made headlines earlier this week after announcing that it had finally reached a settlement in a discrimination case spanning seven years that was being closely monitored by legal experts across the nation.

The case in question was filed by the EEOC on behalf of four Sikh truck drivers against the national shipping giant J.B. Hunt, which has a major presence on the East Coast, including here in New Jersey.

Birth injuries: A brief discussion on common types and causes

Advances in medicine have helped to reduce the risks associated with giving birth, but labor and delivery remains a potentially dangerous event. Although babies are often delivered without issue, it is not uncommon for the infant to suffer from an injury during the birth.

What causes birth injuries?

The medical professionals with Stanford Children's Health, a medical facility ranked as one of the nation's best children's hospitals by U.S. News, notes that there are many common causes of birth injuries.

Discrimination could be tied to your attractiveness

An employer may never tell you that you were denied a job or a promotion because you're unattractive. On the other side, your employer may never mention that you were only hired because he or she does find you physically attractive. However, there is evidence to suggest that this is exactly what goes on in the workplace.

For example, those who are considered more physically attractive have been found, in certain studies, to make more money. This suggests -- though there are many factors in play here -- that it may be easier for them to get promotions or land high-paying jobs.

Sexual harassment may be based more on gender

Sexual harassment is often painted as something that is done for sexual reasons alone. For example, a boss may ask a person who works below him or her for sexual favors in exchange for a promotion. There could also not be anything in it for the other party; the boss may just try to use his or her position of power to take what is wanted and force others to comply.

This is fairly straightforward sexual harassment, but it's important to remember that not all harassment is going to look the same. It's not even going to be centered on anything sexual in all cases. In some instances, it may be more about gender than anything else.

Company policies matter in wrongful termination suits

New Jersey is an at will employment state, which typically means that an employee can be fired at any time, for any reason that is not illegal. Therefore, most wrongful termination suits revolve around people being fired for illegal reasons, like their race, religion, or gender.

However, it's important to note that a company policy also plays a huge role. If it is breached, you could still have a wrongful termination claim, even if the reason for your firing was not illegal on its own.

Report claims gender pay gap still exists

Discriminating based on gender is illegal, so men and women must be paid the same if their qualifications are the same. If a man and a woman both hold the same job, have the same college degree, work the same hours, and have the same amount of experience, the pay needs to be equal.

There are those who argue that this is the case, even though the stats show that women earn right around 80 cents for every dollar men earn. The argument from people who think there isn't a pay gap is that the gender has nothing to do with it. They say that women have less experience, less education, and other drawbacks that make it so they earn less.

Employers can't hire or fire based on genetic information

As more and more is learned about human DNA and genetic information, it becomes more clear that certain people may be genetically predisposed to contract certain diseases and ailments. This is important information for the medical community, which can help them both understand and potentially treat some of these diseases.

One of the downsides of having this information on file, though, is that employers may be tempted to use it when hiring or firing employees. If one employee appears more likely to get sick than another, that could sway a decision.

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