Employers in Ohio are subject to numerous state and federal laws regulating nearly every area of labor and employee relations. Fisher & Phillips LLP has released a booklet that can be used to help develop policies and procedures that allow employers to avoid lawsuits or more effectively defend lawsuits.
In recent years, Ohio’s legislative history has made it difficult to make general characterizations about whether Ohio law is hospitable or not hospitable to employers. On the plus side:
The employment-at-will doctrine is as solid as ever.
The Ohio courts favor arbitration agreements in the employment setting.
Covenants not to compete will generally be enforced. Ohio courts embrace federal court standards in discrimination and harassment case.
The tort of public policy wrongful discharge seems to be in remission after a period of expansion.
The Ohio legislature has enacted tort reform legislation making it more difficult for employees to prove workplace intentional tort claims and imposing damages caps on these and other types of tort actions, including discrimination claims.
But, in certain areas, Ohio law is not so favorable to employers:
There is an abundance of cognizable common-law claims in the employment setting.
Supervisors can be held individually liable for discrimination claims.
The standards governing harassment claims are quite liberal.
Age discrimination is a bewildering labyrinth of statutory provisions and case law pronouncements.
Employers with questions or problems related to any of the material covered in the booklet may contact Spencer Skeen at the Ohio office of Fisher & Phillips LLP at (440) 838-8800, or visit www.laborlawyers.com.