Author Archives: Jessica Shiffman

Jessica Shiffman

About Jessica Shiffman

Jessie utilizes her strong writing skills and attention to detail to assist clients in preparing a wide range of employment-related documents, including employment handbooks and policies, performance improvement plans, and separation agreements. Her meticulous research and writing skills also add value to briefing and motion practice when litigation becomes necessary.

Quirky Question #280: Minneapolis Sick and Safe Time Ordinance

Question: We are an employer that has a few employees working in Minneapolis, and just heard about a new law requiring employers to provide paid sick leave in Minneapolis. Will this apply to us? What are the requirements? And how long do I have to prepare?

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Question #274: Opining on Obesity

Question: We have a large meat processing facility in Northern Minnesota. We were recently hiring for one of our positions in the plant requiring work with large mechanical equipment. Because we consider this position to be safety sensitive, we require candidates for this position to pass a medical examination prior to hire. One of the candidates for the open position was rejected because her BMI exceeded our qualification standards for such safety sensitive positions. This seemed reasonable to me, but I thought I should check – can we deny employment on the basis of weight without violating the ADA?

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Quirky Question #271: We’ve Got a Worried Waiter

Question: We recently interviewed a candidate for a server position at our restaurant. During the interview, he informed us that he has an anxiety disorder, which causes him to have panic attacks out of the blue. Do we have to hire him? What if he had a panic attack in the middle of serving a customer?

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Quirky Question #267: An Equine Accommodation?

Question: Our employee regularly uses a service dog in our office, which helps him with stability and maintaining balance around the office, which can be challenging for him due to several medical conditions he has. However, yesterday he came in and said he would like to use a miniature horse as a service animal instead of the dog, because it is preferable given his tall stature, among other reasons. We were fine with the dog – who doesn’t love an office dog? But a horse, really? Do we have to accommodate this?

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Quirky Question #253, Private arbitrations becoming not-so-private?

Question:

I read with interest the answer to Quirky Question #248 about mandatory arbitration. You mentioned one of the benefits of arbitration being that is more private than a dispute in court, which is certainly a consideration for our company as we determine whether to implement this type of policy. Is that really the case, given the recent legislation I’ve heard about in California requiring arbitration companies to make public everything they do? Answer→

Quirky Question #242 – Policing Break and Time Records Pays Off

Question:

We are a California employer.   After all the publicity surrounding class actions over meal and break periods, we instituted automatic warnings if employees take too long or too short a meal or rest break. Is anyone really enforcing this kind of discipline or are we wasting our time? Answer→

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