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Labor & Employment

Labor & Employment – Panel Rehearing Denied in Family Dollar Class Action (access required)

Scott v. Family Dollar Stores Inc. : A divided 4th Circuit panel again splits over rehearing a case in which the majority said plaintiffs in a class action gender discrimination lawsuit against the Family Dollar discount chain are entitled to amend their complaint. Judges Roger M. Gregory and Barbara M. Keenan voted to deny rehearing. Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III, who dissented from the panel majority opinion, dissented from the denial of panel rehearing.

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Labor & Employment – ERISA ‘Satisfactory Proof’ Standard Clarified (access required)

Cosey v. The Prudential Ins. Co. of America : Joining five sister circuits, the 4th Circuit says an ERISA plan that grants long-term disability benefits on proof of continuing disability “satisfactory” to the plan administrator does not confer discretionary decision-making authority on the plan administrator; the 4th Circuit vacates summary judgment for employer and remands employee’s suit for disability benefits for her fibromyalgia, sleep disorder and related conditions.

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Labor & Employment – Public Employees – Administrative – Law Enforcement Certification — Suspension (access required)

Krueger v. NC Criminal Justice & Training Standards Commission : A 180-day suspension of a law enforcement certification cannot be said to “shock the conscience” when the certified officer knowingly and willfully falsifies training records. Therefore, the suspended officer’s substantive due process rights have not been violated.

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Labor & Employment – Public Employees – EMT Credential – Alcohol – Urinalysis (access required)

Whitaker v. N.C. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Emergency Medical Services There was testimony to the effect that interpreting a urine ethanol level is tricky; however, 10 NCAC 13P.0701(e)(10) says respondent may revoke a licensee’s emergency medical technician-paramedic credential for “testing positive for any substance, legal or illegal, that is likely to impair the physical or psychological ability of the credentialed EMS personnel to perform all required or expected functions while on duty.”

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Labor & Employment – Public Employees – Law Enforcement Certification – Obtaining Property by False Pretenses – Health Insurance – Premium Reduction – Non-Smokers (access required)

Neudecker v. NC Criminal Justice Education & Training Standards Commission The evidence indicates that, after an orientation class with a first-time teacher, petitioner and two other new deputies were confused and believed they could sign a Statement of Non-Tobacco Use form (and get a reduction in their health insurance premiums) if they intended to quit using tobacco.

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Labor & Employment – Public Employees – EMT Credential – Alcohol – Urinalysis (access required)

Whitaker v. N.C. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Emergency Medical Services There was testimony to the effect that interpreting a urine ethanol level is tricky; however, 10 NCAC 13P.0701(e)(10) says respondent may revoke a licensee’s emergency medical technician-paramedic credential for “testing positive for any substance, legal or illegal, that is likely to impair the physical or psychological ability of the credentialed EMS personnel to perform all required or expected functions while on duty.”

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Labor & Employment – Public Employees – LEO Certification – Drunken Interaction with Officer (access required)

Hullett v. North Carolina Criminal Justice Education & Training Standards Commission When petitioner – then a rookie police officer with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department – drunkenly interacted with a Buncombe County sheriff’s detective who was providing security at an Asheville hotel, petitioner merely remonstrated with the detective (and the other officers he had called for back-up).

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Labor & Employment Public Employees – Justice Officer Certification – Denial – Material Misrepresentation (access required)

Smith v. North Carolina Sheriffs’ Education & Training Standards Commission Petitioner knowingly made a material misrepresentation on her application for certification as a justice officer when she said she had never been arrested or otherwise charged with a criminal offense; consequently, respondent may deny certification.

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Labor & Employment – Public Employees – Criminal Justice Certification – Good Moral Character – Excessive Force (access required)

Kelly v. N.C. Sheriffs’ Education & Training Standards Commission Petitioner’s criminal justice certification was denied based on a single incident in which, while a police officer, he punched and then kicked a handcuffed suspect in the face when the suspect tried to assault EMS personnel. Petitioner admits the kick was excessive, but he presented more than sufficient evidence of his good moral character, including his good standing in the Armed Forces, his good standing at the Durham County Sheriff’s Office for the past two years, and the testimony of a supervisor and a colleague.

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Labor & Employment – Public Employees – Health Care Personnel Registry (access required)

Johnson v. North Carolina Department of Health & Human Services, Division of Health Service Regulation Although petitioner used an “unsanctioned hold” on a patient after he took her ring and refused to return it, the only witness who said petitioner “slammed” the patient into a row of lockers was not credible, and there was no evidence that the patient suffered physical pain or mental anguish.

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