Illinois Amends Recreational Marijuana Statute to Clarify Employers’ Rights

On December 4, 2019, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed into law amendments to the Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act (Illinois Cannabis Act) that clarify employer rights to enforce reasonable workplace drug policies once recreational marijuana use becomes legal in Illinois on January 1, 2020.  As originally drafted, the Illinois Cannabis Act created confusion for employers as to whether they could lawfully test and/or discriminate against applicants who tested positive for cannabis, based on pre-employment and off-duty use of the drug.

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Landmark Chicago “Fair Workweek” Ordinance Entitles Employees to Pay for Schedule Changes and Lost Work Hours

On July 23, 2019, the Chicago City Council passed the controversial Chicago Fair Workweek Ordinance (the Ordinance). Once Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, a vocal proponent of the Ordinance, signs it into law, the Ordinance is scheduled to take effect for the majority of covered employers on July 1, 2020.

The Chicago Ordinance covers:
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Illinois Employers Beware: State Supreme Court Finds No Harm Required Under Biometric Law

Many employers have opted to use technology to their advantage by adopting biometric timekeeping systems or similar systems for workplace access. But adopting such technology is not without risk. Indeed, with data breaches on the rise, employees and consumers have become more vigilant about protecting their personal data and using state privacy laws and the like to do so. The Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Law is one such law that places restrictions on businesses that collect biometric information of individuals. That law defines biometric information as “any information, regardless of how it is captured, converted, stored, or shared, based on an individual’s biometric identifier [i.e. ‘a retina, iris scan, fingerprint, voiceprint, or scan of hand or face geometry’] used to identify an individual.” 740 ILCS 14/10.

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Employment Law Seminar Presented by the Federal Bar Association Chicago Chapter

Employment Law Seminar

The Chicago FBA invites you to attend its Employment Law Seminar on Thursday, January 23, 2014.  This program will feature eight judges from the federal and Illinois judiciary, including the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, the Northern District of
Illinois and the Circuit Court of Cook County, as well as representatives from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, University of Chicago Law School and private practitioners.

Do not miss this opportunity to hear firsthand from these experts about the ever-changing landscape of federal and state laws and regulations. Panel discussions will cover recent developments in employment discrimination law, procedural developments in individual and class litigation, settlement and mediation, and EEOC investigations and litigation, among other topics of utmost
importance to employment law attorneys, employers and employees.

To view the agenda and pricing information, click here.

Date:     
Thursday, January 23, 2014

Time: 
1 to 5 p.m.
Cocktails and Hors d’oeuvres to follow

Location:
Hosted by Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
191 North Wacker Drive
Chicago, Illinois

CLE:
3.75 Illinois MCLE credit hours*

Register online:   www.fedbarchicago.org/employment-law-seminar

* FBA Chicago will be applying for accreditation for 3.75 Illinois MCLE credit hours. Continuing legal education credits for other states must be handled by individual attendees.

Cheryl Orr to Speak at Drinker Biddle’s 2013 ERISA Insurance Symposium November 12 & 13, 2013

Cheryl Orr, partner in the San Francisco office, will be speaking on two panels at Drinker Biddle’s upcoming 2013 ERISA Insurance Symposium.  This complimentary symposium, which will be held in the firm’s Chicago office on November 12 & 13, 2013, is intended for in-house counsel and those with ERISA compliance responsibility.  It will feature panel discussions and breakout groups with a practical focus on developments and challenges for the recordkeeping divisions and affiliated broker-dealers of insurance companies operating in the qualified retirement plan market.  Topics to be discussed include:

  • Regulatory developments at the DOL and IRS
  • Retirement income guarantees
  • ERISA litigation and DOL investigations of service providers

Cheryl’s first panel, Technology Issues for Insurance Companies, will discuss data security issues, cyber risks, FINRA privacy concerns and the impact of the ADA on websites.  Her second panel, Odds and Ends: Breakout Discussion of Issues and Problems, will include discussion for Broker-Dealers/RIAs on several topics, including: (i) Conflicts of interest issues; (ii) Ongoing challenges for broker-dealers arising under previously-sold variable annuity contracts; (iii) Employee vs. independent contractor challenges and mitigating risk; and (iv) Pension factoring.

To register for the symposium please visit the registration page here.

 

Cheryl Orr Quoted on Illinois Medical Marijuana Law Story in Chicago Tribune

San Francisco Partner Cheryl Orr was quoted in a recent story in the Chicago Tribune on Illinois medical marijuana law and the legal implications for Illinois employers whose policies are at odds with the law.  Some of the issues Illinois employers will need to confront include reconciling their drug-free work place policies with patients’ rights, what they can ask job applicants, how to deal with an impaired employee and whether or not an employer can punish an employee for engaging in what is now deemed to be a legal activity.

Cheryl submitted that the Illinois statute may offer civil employment protections for workers.  One provision of the Illinois law appears to narrowly tie the ability to discipline a medical marijuana patient for failing a drug test to those employers who are specifically connected to federal work or funding.  This framework, Cheryl wrote, “creates a plausible argument that the statute does provide protections” for medical marijuana users in the private sector.

LaborSphere previously looked at employer liability under the Illinois law, and other states who have laws providing for some form of legalized medical marijuana, and will continue to follow this ever evolving area of law.