Eversheds Sutherland 11th Circuit Business Blog
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Court Rejects Plaintiff’s Claims for FLSA and Rehabilitation Act Violations

This week the Eleventh Circuit affirmed the lower court’s (N.D. Ala.) decision to reject a city employee’s claims for violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), 29 U.S.C. §§ 201-219, and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (“Rehabilitation Act”), 29 U.S.C. § 794. Boyle v. City of Pell City, 2017 WL 3429383 (11th Cir. Aug. 10, 2017). Judge Fay, writing for the three- judge panel,...

NO ERISA CLAIMS FOR MULTI-EMPLOYER PENSION FUND CONTRIBUTOR

Responding to a pension fund’s dire financial condition, its board passed an amendment requiring employers withdrawing from the fund to pay a portion of the fund’s deficiency. One contributing employer, WestRock, then sought a declaratory judgment that the amendment violated ERISA, arguing on appeal that it had a claim under 29 U.S.C. §§ 1132(a)(10) or 1451(a). Whether these provisions...

For FMLA Retaliation Claims, It’s the End-of-Leave Date that Counts

The Eleventh Circuit has held that the end of FMLA leave, not the beginning, is the relevant date for determining “close temporal proximity” between protected activity and an adverse employment action when evaluating an FMLA retaliation claim. Jones v. Gulf Coast Health Care of Delaware, LLC, 2017 WL 1396165 (11th Cir. Apr. 19, 2017). Rodney Jones’s job as Activities Director at a...

Plaintiff in Sexual-Orientation Discrimination Case Files En Banc Petition, Highlighted by Newly Created Circuit Split

A high-profile Seventh Circuit decision and a circuit split may increase the likelihood of the Eleventh Circuit granting rehearing en banc in Evans v. Georgia Regional Hospital, a decision we covered here last month.  A divided panel in Evans held that—unlike discrimination based on gender non-conformity—discrimination based on sexual orientation is not prohibited by Title VII.  As...

Discrimination Based on Gender Non-Conformity Is Prohibited by Title VII; Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation Is Not

In Evans v. Georgia Regional Hospital, 2017 WL 943925 (Mar. 10, 2017), the Eleventh Circuit considered an issue that has been the subject of much judicial and academic debate in recent years:  How does Title VII’s prohibition on discrimination “because of . . . sex” apply to claims of LGBT discrimination?  Perhaps unsurprisingly, the court was sharply split on the answer, with each...

Common-Law Agency Principles, Not DOL Regulations, Dictate Whether Company Is a Joint “Employer”

The Eleventh Circuit considered the meaning of “employer” in the context of the H-2A visa program and declined to apply Chevron deference to a then-prevailing Department of Labor interpretation.  The court instead applied common-law agency principles.  Garcia-Celestino v. Consolidated Citrus Limited Partnership, 2016 WL 7240150 (Dec. 15, 2016), involved claims brought by a group of...

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