Blog - Parks Chesin & Walbert
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Abortion Clinics, the Law & Texas

In 2013, Texas passed HB-2. HB-2 is a law that increases regulations on abortion. The law’s stated purpose is to increase women’s health and safety. Opponents of the law challenge that assertion. They argue that the law places places an unconstitutional limitation on women’s access to abortion.

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Immigrants and In-State Tuition

In March, immigrant would-be students in Georgia attempted to challenge the state’s university system. Why? The university system currently doesn’t allow immigrants to take advantage of in-state tuition. Children are often brought to the country as children and then permitted to stay temporarily. However, the state is only required to ensure that they have access to high school tuition.

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Sharing and Taking Nude Pictures: What is the Law?

As the Erin Andrews case has shown, sharing nude pictures of celebrities is punishable in law. Andrews was awarded $55 million after she was illegally recorded in the privacy of her hotel room by a stalker and the footage was shared online. Now, the Erin Andrews case was distinctive due to the fact that she was videotaped without her knowledge in a hotel room, and the hotel was partly responsible for this. However, the sharing of her nude picture over the internet has raised the question of whether this is something that should be litigated against in civil law, whether this is, in fact, a sex crime, or whether this is even a crime at all. The legislation and past case law is vague, and the way in which the Internet is increasingly used to hack into private accounts to share information (including pictures) is an issue which the law has never fully addressed.

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Uber in the News: Employment Law Ramifications

In this era of independent contractors, workers have the ability to work for themselves as consultants for other companies. If they’d like, they can simply fulfill tasks that companies outsource. Companies such as the taxi firm Uber are a prime example of this. Unfortunately, companies like this are also an example of the number of employment law cases that have recently been involved in a class action lawsuit. The way in which these workers are treated compared to the huge profits these companies make off of independent contractors is causing the era of independent contracting to be called into question.

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Antonin Scalia and the Supreme Court: The Impact on Employment Law

The hugely respected Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s death has had massive implications for developments in employment law across America. As predictions about ongoing cases are made, ripples of uncertainty are being created throughout law firms across the country. Scalia acted as the embodiment of conservatism in the Supreme Court for three decades, and he was respected even by those who disagreed with him. His death will undoubtedly be accompanied by consequences for employees, employers and businesses.

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Can My Employer Force Me to Attend a Work Function?

Work functions: even if attendance is not mandatory, employees often feel compelled to attend.

Under most circumstances employers are permitted to require their employees attend a work function (even if it is outside normal business hours), because most states are at-will employment states. This means that an employee can be terminated or quit for any reason or no reason, as along as the employee is not part of a protected class, and the reason for termination is not unlawful discrimination. In at-will employment states, employees can be legally fired for not attending a mandatory work function that occurs outside normal business hours (even if that event occurs far away from their place of employment). Typical functions include holiday parties, meetings, weekend or evening retreats, and social or charity events. Sometimes these events are explicitly mandatory and sometimes there is strong peer pressure associated with attending— which makes them essentially mandatory events.

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Laws about Age Discrimination

Age discrimination against employees at least forty years old has been deemed illegal in most circumstances since President Johnson signed the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) into law in 1967. The ADEA applies to employers (of interstate commerce) who employ twenty or more employees.

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What Does Diversity Look Like on the Supreme Court?

Historically, the Supreme Court Justice has not been a diverse group. Only in the past several decades have Presidents even nominated candidates who fell outside the categories of white, Protestant, and male. There have been 112 Supreme Court Justices, 108 of them male, and only 4 female. Only 2 have been African American. The first, Thurgood Marshall, began serving in 1967 and the second Clarence Thomas is currently on the Court. In 1981, 205 years after the creation of the Supreme Court, the country got the first female Justice, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. In the 35 years since, women’s role on the Court has increased. Now, the Court has three female justices, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Justice Elena Kagan Justice, and Sonia Sotomayor, who is a Latina as well.

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Dr. Luke in the Limelight: Music Producers & Employment Law

Kesha’s attempts to void her recording contracts with Lukaz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald and Sony are directly related to allegations of harassment and rape. The lawsuit and the media frenzy surrounding it have placed the music industry (and how artists are employed in the industry) in the spotlight. In her lawsuit, Kesha claims she was the victim of sexual harassment, gender violence, civil harassment, unfair business, and intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress as well as sexual assault and battery.

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