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The Sawyer County Circuit Court has reinstated Emergency Order #3, after briefly blocking it last week. This means that Emergency Order #3 is back in effect, and all public gatherings must comply with its limits. Emergency Order #3 limits the size of crowds at indoor locations such as restaurants and bars. Emergency Order #3 limits such public gatherings to no more than 25% of the total occupancy limits for the room or building, as established by the local municipality. If the indoor space does not have an occupancy limit, then the limit is no more than 10 people. Emergency Order #3…
On October 6, 2020, the State of Wisconsin issued Emergency Order #3 limiting public gatherings. Emergency Order #3 was designed to limit the size of crowds at indoor locations such as restaurants and bars. Emergency Order #3 limited such public gatherings to no more than 25% of the total occupancy limits for the room or building, as established by the local municipality. If the indoor space does not have an occupancy limit, then the limit was no more than 10 people. The Tavern League of Wisconsin challenged the State of Wisconsin’s order on the grounds that it failed to go…
No age discrimination occurred when an employer didn’t promote a 74-year-old employee who had failed a mandatory subjective test, the 7th Circuit recently ruled. The court said the employee failed to show objective evidence of discrimination other than that the test scorers knew his age. Therefore, it ruled in the employer’s favor. Facts Romuald Tyburski, then 74 years old, applied for a promotion with the Chicago Department of Water Manage-ment. As part of the application process, he was required to pass a three-part examination (two parts written and one oral). He passed the written parts but failed the oral exam…
We are an employer with approximately 400 employees, and we are aware a couple of our workers have tested positive for COVID-19. Are we required to notify all employees about the coworkers who have tested positive for the virus? The short answer is a qualified yes. You should notify your employees another worker has tested positive for COVID-19 if they have had contact with the infected worker. For the last several months, all facets of society have tried to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and all it entails. From locking down, sheltering in place, social distancing, virtual learning, and sharing bandwidth,…
On October 6, 2020 the state of Wisconsin issued Emergency Order #3 Limiting Public Gatherings. Emergency Order #3 goes into effect Thursday, October 8th at 8:00 A.M. and is designed to limit the size of crowds at indoor locations such as restaurants and bars. The order will expire on November 6, 2020. Emergency Order #3 only applies to public gatherings, which it defines as “an indoor event, convening, or collection of individuals, whether planned or spontaneous, that is open to the public and brings together people who are not part of the same household in a single room.” Places that…
Few things are as shocking to an employer as learning a trusted employee is embezzling. Often, the feeling of betrayal is as gut-wrenching as the discovery of the financial loss itself. The first instinct may be to call the police. But because embezzlement is difficult, expensive, and time-consuming to prove, local law enforcement may be reluctant to investigate and prosecute. In addition, many employers don’t want their customers or the business community to know. As a result, an employer may feel it has little chance of recovering its loss and satisfy itself with merely terminating the embezzling employee. There is…
It’s safe to say our nation is in uncharted territory when contemplating how to establish a work-life balance while homeschooling and caring for children, keeping up with the demands of “work from home,” and facing an unknown future. Fortunately, many people have had access to the necessary technology to work from home. Unfortunately, there is no handbook on how to balance employment with childcare and educational needs. Early Days of the Pandemic At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, school and daycare closures appeared to be temporary. With-out substantial time to determine the best practice for holding classes, teachers, administrators,…
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently issued guidance on returning to work for businesses deemed nonessential. The guidance is intended to supplement the agency’s previously issued guidance on preparing workplaces for COVID-19 as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) guidelines for “Opening Up America Again.” OSHA’s guidance is also supposed to supplement state and local information and reopening requirements. You can use the guidance to develop policies and procedures to ensure your employees’ safety and health. Phased Reopening OSHA recommends a three-phase reopening process to be aligned with the lifting of stay-at-home orders and…
As the pandemic continues to demonstrate, life has its shares of unexpected twists and turns that we cannot always control. One of the best ways to prepare for life’s uncertainty is by creating an estate plan. Unfortunately, estate planning is something that most Gen Zers and Millennials, like myself, are never taught about. Estate planning is the process of formally designating how you want your wishes to be carried out and by whom in the event you become incapacitated or pass away. While it might seem like a task that can be put-off indefinitely, a proper estate plan can save…
Readers of this article are likely familiar with cannabidiol, more prominently known by its initialism “CBD,” which has exploded in popularity over the past several years. However, the cannabis industry is buzzing about a derivative of CBD that is quickly gaining notoriety: Delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol (D-8 THC). The rising popularity of D-8 THC can be attributed to its somatosensory effects, and because (as of the writing of this article) D-8 THC is not illegal under federal law. As a result, cannabis businesses are moving quickly to synthesize, market, and sell D-8 THC products. What is D-8 THC? D-8 THC must be…
After covering the usual areas regarding the expert’s opinions, all of the documents reviewed, and supporting facts for the opinions, consider probing the expert concerning some areas the expert (and opposing counsel) might want to avoid. Are there weaknesses in the opponent’s case? Ask the expert whether the client or counsel expressed any concerns about the client’s case. Was there anything about the expert’s opinions that reflected these concerns, or did the expert need to develop additional opinions to address the concerns or weaknesses? Ask the expert if any weaknesses were spotted by the expert (or counsel) at any point…
Under the CARES Act, passed in spring, the federal government imposed a 120-day moratorium on evictions for failure to pay rent for properties supported by federally-backed mortgages. This moratorium expired on July 24, 2020.  With the pandemic continuing, the President issued an executive order on August 8, 2020, directing various executive branches to consider solutions to evictions, in light of the ongoing pandemic environment. Following up on the guidance of the executive order, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a new temporary eviction moratorium. On September 4, 2020, the CDC invoked its powers under Section 361…
Due to COVID-19, employers and employees have been using Zoom or similar platforms to conduct meetings and communicate with customers, vendors, and peers. Zoom is everywhere now. So is the potential for someone to record a conversation and unknowingly subject themselves to criminal or civil penalties. Therefore, before hitting the record button, know your responsibilities under Wisconsin law. Section 968.31 of the Wisconsin Statutes regulates the interception and disclosure of wire, electronic, and oral communications done with an expectation of privacy. Wisconsin is known as a one party consent state, which means that you may legally record a conversation if…
The start of the new school year. The arrival of students on campus. Moving away from home. It is easy to think it was 2019, but it is NOT.  In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, students were notified (through the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards and University Housing, the OSCCS) prior to their arrival on campus this fall, that OSCCS would be enforcing social distancing and small group assembly (meaning less than 10 people together in one place at one time).  If a student is suspected of violating these regulations, the university has taken the position that…
Most managers are committed to the success of their organizations, employees, customers, and communities.  They work hard to provide safe and healthful workplaces.  They give their best efforts to manage in good faith compliance with the myriad federal, state, and local laws applicable to their organizations. They are generally mission-critical to protecting their organizations against liability exposure.  Even so, some organizations have faced significant manager resistance to the use of COVID-19-related face-coverings in the workplace.  Why is that, and what can be done about it? As employers, we are dealing with the human condition, which is inherently good, but which…
The United States Postal Service (USPS) has found its way into the national spotlight as the 2020 presidential election, COVID-19, and absentee voting loom large over the landscape.  The USPS is an independent agency of the executive branch of the federal government that provides postal service in the United States.  In fact, the USPS is one of the few government agencies explicitly authorized by the United States Constitution under Article I, Section 8, Clause 7, also known as the “Postal Clause.”  In other words, it is not your standard for-profit business as you often hear it described in the news. …