Court Re-Emphasizes Importance of Going and Coming Rule
By: Rebecca A. Hause-Schultz
The “going and coming” rule says that an employee is generally not acting within the scope of employment when going to or coming from the employee’s regular place of work. In a recent case, Plaintiffs argued that an employer was responsible for an employee’s accident because the employer knew or ought to have known that the employee’s workers’ compensation related back injury and medications prescribed to him because of the back injury made him a “dangerous commuter.” You can read the case here.
The court said Plaintiffs’ “dangerous commuter” argument ignored that the employee’s physician approved of his return to work and did not place any driving restrictions on him. The court said that the “going and coming” rule was created for exactly this circumstance, and said Plaintiffs could not continue their case against the employer.
COUNSEL TO MANAGEMENT:
This case is a good reminder of the “going and coming” rule, and also gives reassurance to employers that they may rely on an employee’s physician in making return to work and restriction decisions. If you have questions about this case or labor and employment law, contact The Saqui Law Group, a Division of Dowling Aaron Incorporated.
EEOC Hits The Jackson-Pot
By: Adrian Hoppes
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) just signed its largest settlement ever, over $20 million dollars, with Jackson National Life Insurance Company (“Jackson”). The EEOC found that Jackson likely discriminated against black female workers by paying them less or denying promotions because of their race and gender, and sexually harassing these women. The EEOC brought the suit in September of 2016 on behalf of 21 identified workers and the events that led to this litigation occurred in 2009 and 2010. The representative for Jackson noted that there was no finding of wrongdoing but recognizes that “the associates who made claims in this case believe they were not treated fairly or in a way that aligns with Jackson’s core values.”
COUNSEL TO MANAGEMENT:
In California, the Fair Pay Act and the Fair Employment Housing Act makes it unlawful for an employer to pay wage rates less than the rates paid to employees of the opposite sex for substantially similar work, when considering the skill, effort, responsibility, and working conditions of the job, and for harassment in the workplace. The best way to protect your Company from these types of claims is to stay up to date on the state of the law and audit your Company’s compensation structure and harassment policy to ensure compliance with the Fair Pay Act and the Fair Employment Housing Act. If you have questions, contact the experts at The Saqui Law Group, a Division of Dowling Aaron Incorporated.