An Employment Law Guide: Employee Rights and Employer Responsibilities in Virginia

An Employment Law Guide: Employee Rights and Employer Responsibilities in Virginia
Publication Date: 2021
Available Formats: Print (404 pages, softcover, 1 volume)
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Product #: 876

Information

Content Highlights:
  • Discrimination in the Hiring Process
  • Applications, Testing, and Interviews
  • Post-Employment Inquiries
  • Restrictions on Employee Conduct
  • Employee Rights and Protections
  • Termination of Employment
  • Post-Termination Considerations
  • Government Contractors' Affirmative Action Obligations
  • Public Employer Issues
  • Employment of Foreign Nationals

An Employment Law Guide: Employee Rights and Employer Responsibilities in Virginia is a concise overview of employment law in Virginia. Drawn from Virginia CLE’s comprehensive two-volume Employment Law in Virginia, the guide provides broad coverage of crucial employment law topics, from hiring to termination. Designed for the non-specialist, it gets to the point quickly with clear prose explanations of the most commonly encountered employment situations. It is fully referenced to permit more in-depth research if needed.

From the hiring process through termination, the guide is also especially valuable for human resources managers and in-house counsel who must routinely advise the businesses they serve when day-to-day questions arise. All aspects of the employment relationship and the statutes that control them are addressed. This publication is current through the regular 2021 session of the Virginia General Assembly and includes employment-related coverage of The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

  • What may an employer ask a job candidate in the hiring process? What questions and topics should be avoided?
  • What restrictions may an employer include in a covenant not to compete?
  • May an employer monitor employees’ telephone calls, email, and voice mail?
  • May a foreign national conduct business while visiting the United States under the Visa Waiver Program? May he or she engage in employment in the United States?
  • Are temporary employees covered under the Family and Medical Leave Act?

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Table of Contents

CHAPTER LIST

1. Discrimination in the Hiring Process

2. Applications, Testing, and Interviews

3. Post-Employment Inquiries

4. Restrictions on Employee Conduct

5. Employee Rights and Protections

6. Termination of Employment

7. Post-Termination Considerations

8. Government Contractors' Affirmative Action Obligations

9. Public Employer Issues

10. Employment of Foreign Nationals


CHAPTER 1: DISCRIMINATION IN THE HIRING PROCESS

1.1 PROHIBITED DISCRIMINATION IN HIRING BY
PRIVATE EMPLOYERS
        1.101 Disparate Treatment
        1.102 Disparate Impact
        1.103 Continuing Violations

1.2 SOURCES OF EMPLOYMENT DISCRIMINATION CLAIMS
AND HOW TO AVOID THEM
        1.201 Age
        1.202 Disabilities
        1.203 Marital Status
        1.204 Military Service
        1.205 Race or Color
        1.206 Sex
        1.207 Religion
        1.208 Citizenship or National Origin
        1.209 Other Sources of Discrimination Claims

1.3 BONA FIDE OCCUPATIONAL QUALIFICATION

1.4 EMPLOYER DEFENSES
        1.401 EEOC Uniform Guidelines
        1.402 Tests
        1.403 Seniority
        1.404 Merit Systems
        1.405 Bona Fide Occupational Qualification
        1.406 Business Necessity
        1.407 After-Acquired Evidence
        1.408 Arbitration Agreements
        1.409 Diplomatic Immunity
        1.410 Time Constraints
        1.411 Adverse Employment Action

1.5 REMEDIES

1.6 RECRUITING BY PRIVATE EMPLOYERS

CHAPTER 2: APPLICATIONS, TESTING, AND INTERVIEWS

2.1 INTRODUCTION

2.2 APPLICATION FORMS
        2.201 Basic Information
        2.202 Specific Questions or Topics to Avoid
        2.203 Verification of Information

2.3 PREEMPLOYMENT TESTING
        2.301 Polygraph Tests
        2.302 Paper and Pencil Honesty Tests
        2.303 Medical Examinations and Inquiries
        2.304 HIV and AIDS Testing
        2.305 Genetic Testing
        2.306 Drug Tests
        2.307 Alcohol Tests
        2.308 Physical Agility and Physical Fitness Tests
        2.309 Psychological Examinations
        2.310 Vision Tests

2.4 CREDIT REPORTS

2.5 EMPLOYER LIABILITY FOR INVESTIGATION IN THE
HIRING CONTEXT
        2.501 Negligent Hiring
        2.502 Claims by Customers and Other Third Parties
        2.503 Claims by Coworkers
        2.504 Negligent Retention
        2.505 Negligent Supervision

2.6 INTERVIEWS

CHAPTER 3: POST-EMPLOYMENT INQUIRIES

3.1 ELIGIBILITY TO WORK

3.2 CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE AND ALCOHOL TESTING
        3.201 Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988
        3.202 Department of Defense Contract Rules
        3.203 Department of Transportation Rules
        3.204 Hiring or Reinstatement

3.3 MONITORING EMPLOYEE COMMUNICATIONS
        3.301 Monitoring Telephone Calls, Email, and Voice Mail
        3.302 The Federal Wiretap Statute
        3.303 State Laws
        3.304 Surreptitious Audiotaping or Videotaping of
        Conversations
        3.305 Rules Prohibiting Workplace Recordings
        3.306 Computer Monitoring
        3.307 Accessing Computer Files
        3.308 Voice Mail
        3.309 Incoming Email
        3.310 Opening Mail
        3.311 Practical Guidelines

3.4 EMPLOYEE SURVEILLANCE AND SEARCHES
        3.401 Surveillance
        3.402 Searches
        3.403 Employer-Issued Electronic Devices
        3.404 Social Media
        3.405 Personnel Records

CHAPTER 4: RESTRICTIONS ON EMPLOYEE CONDUCT

4.1 THE EMPLOYMENT RELATIONSHIP
        4.101 At-Will Employment
        4.102 Employment Contracts

4.2 COVENANTS NOT TO COMPETE
        4.201 Restraint on Trade
        4.202 Factors Determining Enforceability
        4.203 Protection of Employer’s Interests
        4.204 Impact on the Public

4.3 RESTRAINTS IMPOSED BY LAW
        4.301 Duty of Loyalty
        4.302 Solicitation of a Former Employer’s Customers
        4.303 Misuse of Confidential Information
        4.304 Misuse of Trade Secrets
        4.305 Customer Lists
        4.306 Statutory Conspiracy to Injure Business
        4.307 Common Law Conspiracy
        4.308 Tortious Interference with Contracts

CHAPTER 5: EMPLOYEE RIGHTS AND PROTECTIONS

5.1 FEDERAL CIVIL RIGHTS STATUTES
        5.101 In General
        5.102 42 U.S.C. § 1981
        5.103 Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
        5.104 Sexual Orientation
        5.105 Joint Employer Liability

5.2 THE VIRGINIA HUMAN RIGHTS ACT
        5.201 In General
        5.202 Deferral Agency for Title VII Claims
        5.203 Remedies

5.3 AGE DISCRIMINATION IN EMPLOYMENT ACT (ADEA)
        5.301 In General
        5.302 Employee’s Evidence
        5.303 Employer’s Defenses
        5.304 Waiver

5.4 AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT (ADA)
        5.401 In General
        5.402 The ADAAA

5.5 VIRGINIANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT (VDA)

5.6 FAIR LABOR STANDARDS ACT (FLSA)
        5.601 Wage and Hour Law
        5.602 Coverage
        5.603 Exceptions to Coverage
        5.604 Minimum Wage
        5.605 Overtime Compensation
        5.606 Time Worked
        5.607 Exemptions from Minimum Wage and Overtime
        5.608 Workweek
        5.609 Recordkeeping and Posting
        5.610 Examples of Common Problems for Employers
        5.611 Retaliation
        5.612 Administrative Enforcement
        5.613 Arbitration
        5.614 State Wage and Hour Law
        5.615 State Wage Payment Laws
        5.616 Local “Living Wage” Laws
        5.617 Child Labor

5.7 THE FEDERAL EQUAL PAY ACT
        5.701 Gender-Based Wage Disparities
        5.702 Employers and Employees Covered
        5.703 Definition of Equal Work
        5.704 Components of Equal Work
        5.705 Retaliation
        5.706 Employers’ Defenses
        5.707 The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act
        5.708 The Virginia Equal Pay Act

5.8 THE FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE ACT (FMLA)
        5.801 Employers Covered
        5.802 Employees Eligible for Leave Under the FMLA
        5.803 Events That Trigger Entitlement to FMLA Leave
        5.804 Notice an Employee Must Give of the Need for
        FMLA Leave
        5.805 Length and Timing of FMLA Leave
        5.806 Paid or Unpaid Leave
        5.807 Employee’s Right to Return to Work
        5.808 Returning Employee’s Rights
        5.809 Notice to Employees
        5.810 Health Benefit Continuation
        5.811 Other Benefits Required to Be Continued Under
        the FMLA
        5.812 Medical Certifications
        5.813 Employer Records
        5.814 Employee’s Waiver Unenforceable
    
5.9 UNIFORMED SERVICES EMPLOYMENT AND
REEMPLOYMENT RIGHTS ACT (USERRA)
        5.901 Military Leave
        5.902 Coverage
        5.903 Notice
        5.904 Cost of Benefits
        5.905 Interaction with the FMLA
        5.906 Waiver of Benefits
        5.907 Health Benefits
        5.908 Use of Paid Leave
        5.909 Reemployment
        5.910 Dishonorable Discharge
        5.911 Documentation
        5.912 Time Limits for Reporting or Application
        5.913 Reemployment Position
        5.914 Reemployment Benefits
        5.915 Retroactive Contributions
        5.916 Reinstatement of Health Benefits
        5.917 Retention Rights
        5.918 Release of USERRA Claims
        5.919 Veterans’ Benefits Act of 2010
        5.920 Vow to Hire Heroes Act of 2011

5.10 FEDERAL AND STATE OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND
HEALTH ACTS
        5.1001 Regulatory Framework
        5.1002 State Enforcement
        5.1003 Employer Coverage
        5.1004 Employers’ Primary Obligations
        5.1005 Employees’ Rights and Responsibilities
        5.1006 Other Rights, Responsibilities, and Duties
        5.1007 Elements of an OSHA Violation
        5.1008 Defenses
        5.1009 Warrants
        5.1010 Citations
        5.1011 Contesting Citations
        5.1012 Employee Discrimination Cases
        5.1013 Remedies and Damages

5.11 UNIONS
        5.1101 Protected Concerted Activity and Union Organizing
        5.1102 Campaign
        5.1103 Access to Employer’s Property
        5.1104 Duty to Bargain
        5.1105 Purchases, Acquisitions, and the Obligation to
        Recognize the Union
        5.1106 Unfair Labor Practice Charges
        5.1107 Decertification
        5.1108 Bargaining Unit Composition
        5.1109 Exclusions from the Unit

5.12 WORKERS’ COMPENSATION ISSUES
        5.1201 Exclusive Remedy
        5.1202 Respondeat Superior

5.13 QUI TAM WHISTLEBLOWER CLAIMS
        5.1301 In General
        5.1302 Remedies
        5.1303 Anti-Retaliation Protections for Government
        Employees
    
CHAPTER 6: TERMINATION OF EMPLOYMENT

6.1 AT-WILL EMPLOYMENT
        6.101 Oral Contracts
        6.102 Employee Manuals
        6.103 Implied in Fact Contract
        6.104 Virginia Human Rights Act
        6.105 Other Virginia Statutes Limiting Termination
        6.106 Common Law Wrongful Discharge

6.2 UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION
        6.201 Initial Application for Benefits
        6.202 Initial Determination
        6.203 Disqualification from Receiving Benefits
        6.204 Discharge Due to Misconduct in Connection with
        Work
        6.205 Refusing Suitable Work
        6.206 Willful False Statements
        6.207 Claimant in Prison
        6.208 Substance Abuse
        6.209 Labor Disputes
        6.210 Severance Pay
        6.211 Overpayment of Benefits
        6.212 Defenses for Employers

6.3 OTHER VIRGINIA STATUTES

CHAPTER 7: POST-TERMINATION CONSIDERATIONS

7.1 CONSOLIDATED OMNIBUS BUDGET RECONCILIATION
ACT (COBRA)
        7.101 Overview
        7.102 Continuation Coverage Requirements of Group
        Health Plans
        7.103 Qualifying Events
        7.104 Qualified Beneficiaries
        7.105 Final Treasury Regulations
        7.106 New Employees
        7.107 Election Rights
        7.108 Required Notices
        7.109 Incapacitated Former Employees
        7.110 Duration of Continuation Coverage
        7.111 “Other Coverage” Rule
        7.112 Privacy Requirements
        7.113 Timing of HIPAA Rules
        7.114 Application
        7.115 Implementing HIPAA’s Privacy Rules
        7.116 Claims for Benefits
    
7.2 THE EMPLOYEE RETIREMENT INCOME SECURITY ACT
OF 1974 (ERISA)
        7.201 Overview
        7.202 Coverage
        7.203 Benefit Claims
        7.204 Fiduciary Responsibilities
        7.205 Retaliation Claims Under ERISA
        7.206 Severance Claims
        7.207 Cash Balance Age Discrimination Claims
        7.208 Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002
        7.209 Fiduciary Duties Where Employer Stock Is a
        Retirement Plan Investment Option
        7.210 Anti-Cutback Rule
    
7.3 BUSINESS TORTS
        7.301 Defamation
        7.302 Tortious Interference
        7.303 Statutory Conspiracy
        7.304 Fraud
        7.305 Emotional Distress
        7.306 Oppression of Minority Shareholders
    
7.4 PRIVILEGES AND OTHER DEFENSES
        7.401 Qualified Privilege
        7.402 Absolute Privilege
        7.403 Other Privileges
        7.404 Statutory Protection
        7.405 Workers’ Compensation Act as a Bar
    
CHAPTER 8: GOVERNMENT CONTRACTORS’ AFFIRMATIVE
ACTION OBLIGATIONS


8.1 AFFIRMATIVE ACTION PROGRAMS
        8.101 Laws and Regulations
        8.102 Applicability
        8.103 General Requirements
        8.104 Development of Affirmative Action Programs
        8.105 Other Requirements
        8.106 Enforcement
    
8.2 AGE DISCRIMINATION

8.3 VETERANS
        8.301 Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act
        8.302 Prohibitions
        8.303 Affirmative Action Plan
        8.304 Other Requirements
        8.305 Enforcement

8.4 DISABLED INDIVIDUALS GENERALLY
        8.401 In General
        8.402 Prohibitions
        8.403 Records
        8.404 Invitation for Applicant to Claim Benefit of Section
        503
        8.405 Medical Examinations and Information
        8.406 Voluntary Medical Examinations
        8.407 Affirmative Action Plan
        8.408 Enforcement
    
8.5 ENFORCEMENT AND COMPLIANCE WITH FEDERAL LAW
        8.501 Record Retention
        8.502 Compliance Evaluations
    
8.6 DISABLED INDIVIDUALS AND INFORMATION
TECHNOLOGY

CHAPTER 9: PUBLIC EMPLOYER ISSUES

9.1 CIVIL RIGHTS ISSUES
        9.101 42 U.S.C. § 1981
        9.102 42 U.S.C. § 1983
        9.103 Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
        9.104 Eleventh Amendment Immunity

9.2 AGE DISCRIMINATION IN EMPLOYMENT ACT
        9.201 Federal Government
        9.202 State and Local Governments
    
9.3 AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT
        9.301 Federal Government
        9.302 State and Local Governments
        9.303 Virginians with Disabilities Act
    
9.4 EQUAL PAY ACT
        9.401 Federal Government
        9.402 State and Local Governments
        9.403 Virginia Equal Pay Act
    
9.5 STATE-MANDATED GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE
        9.501 Definition of Grievance
        9.502 Local Government Responsibilities
        9.503 Covered Employees
        9.504 General Requirements
        9.505 Compliance
        9.506 Management Steps
        9.507 Panel Hearing or Hearing Before Administrative
        Hearing Officer
        9.508 Law Enforcement Exception
        9.509 Employees of Local Constitutional Officers

9.6 LABOR RELATIONS AND CONCERTED ACTIVITY IN THE
PUBLIC SECTOR
        9.601 Collective Bargaining
        9.602 Union Membership
        9.603 Labor Disputes and Strikes
    
9.7 POLYGRAPH TESTING
        9.701 In General
        9.702 In Virginia
    
9.8 EMPLOYER SEARCHES
        9.801 In General
        9.802 Search of the Person
        9.803 Search of Property
    
9.9 “BAN THE BOX” HIRING POLICY

CHAPTER 10: EMPLOYMENT OF FOREIGN NATIONALS

10.1 INTRODUCTION
        10.101 Overview
        10.102 Department of Homeland Security
        10.103 Department of State
        10.104 Department of Labor
        10.105 2017 Travel Ban

10.2 IMMIGRATION REFORM AND CONTROL ACT (IRCA)

10.3 NONIMMIGRANT VISAS
        10.301 In General
        10.302 Types of Visas
    
10.4 VISA WAIVER PROGRAM

10.5 IMMIGRANT VISAS

10.6 EFFECT OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION STATUS

INDEX

Authors

EDITORS:

 

 

R. Mark Dare

Thomas M. Winn, III

AUTHORS:

 

Luke J. Archer

Igor M. Babichenko

Ian P. Band

Elaine Charlson Bredehoft

Victor O. Cardwell

Bernard J. DiMuro

Joon Hwang

Edward Lee Isler

Zachary A. Kitts

Elizabeth A. Lalik

Gary S. Marshall

Timothy M. McConville

Kameron V. Melton

Thomas P. Murphy

Kathleen Z. Quill

Merrell B. Renaud

Dana L. Rust

Micah B. Schwartz

Daniel C. Summerlin, III

King F. Tower

Lori H. Turner

Robert B. Wynne

 

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Employment Law in Virginia

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