In the News

Bonnie Mayfield—Key Presenter at 2014 International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) Midyear Meeting

Shares Insights Into Cases Important to Employment Law Practitioners

February 21, 2014

Bonnie Mayfield, a member of Dykema’s Litigation and Labor & Employment practices, was a featured presenter during the 2014 International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) Midyear Meeting. This year's meeting was held in Carlsbad, California from February 8 to 13, 2014.

Mayfield and her co-presenter answered questions and presented information and practical guidance about cases important to employment law practitioners. Some of the questions available for discussion include:

  • Who is a “supervisor” for purposes of harassment claims?
  • Can employers look at the merits of the case during the class action certification stage?
  • Are waivers in a class arbitration agreement strictly enforced?
  • What is the standard of causation for Title VII retaliation claims?
  • What is the status of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)?
  • In a Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) collective action, should an employer make an offer of judgment to pay the damages of the named plaintiff?
  • Can an employer tell an employee not to wear a head scarf or not to bring a 9-inch knife to work?
  • Can an employer fire a school bus driver, who won’t drive after dark?  How about an employee, who wants four weeks off to bury his father, support his mother, and kill five goats to ward off spiritual death?
  • Can an employer mandate that employees speak only English in the workplace?
  • Can a Spanish-speaking employee explain the English-only employee handbook to Spanish-speaking employees, or must the handbook be written in Spanish also?

In her remarks, Mayfield also discussed 2013 Supreme Court case law involving liability and causation under Title VII, certification of class actions, the effectiveness of waivers in class arbitration agreements, the Federal Arbitration Act, FLSA collective actions, and whether a named plaintiff can be picked off by the defendant.