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Employment & Professional License Defense

Reasons why a nurse can lose a license

Nurses are an important part of the medical industry. They work in hospitals, doctor's offices, schools and many other locations. No matter how well he or she performs his or her duties, a nurse can still face a hearing regarding his or her professional license. Here are some reasons why a nurse can lose a license in Minnesota:

One of the quickest ways a nurse can risk losing his or her professional license is by impersonating another practitioner. This happens more often than people think and employers sometimes don't discover it for years.

A solid risk management plan can help nurses facing malpractice

Nursing can be a very stressful and hazardous profession. Every day, you might have to make a decision that could mean life or death to a patient. The "what ifs" that exist in the nursing profession are limitless and even a simple mistake could have dire consequences, which, in turn, could lead to the possible loss of your nursing license. This is where risk management comes in.

As a nurse in Minnesota or Wisconsin, you have an obligation to your patients to practice your profession in a safe manner. In general, you are legally responsible for all of your actions as a professional which means that you should have a plan in place in case you find yourself having to fight back against a malpractice claim. The following tips can help you develop a risk management plan in case you find yourself in such a position.

How Minnesota views your right to privacy in the workplace

Minnesota's Supreme Court recently committed itself to addressing invasion of privacy matters, especially in the workplace. What's come of this is renewed interest in employee rights as it relates to employer's responsibility to respect their boundaries, even when they're on work premises. More specifically, it's left many asking whether it's lawful for employers to search employee computers and desks, tap their phones or voice concerns about personal choices.

Under current Minnesota law, employers are only entitled to either monitor their employee's calls, read their emails or search their desks if they advise them of their rights to do so in advance. Additionally, they're only allowed to do so for a business-related reason. They're therefore restricted from tapping into anything of a personal nature, even if it involves a work phone or computer.

Minnesota resident rights under the Women's Economic Security Act

The Women's Economic Security Act (WESA), also known as HF2536, was first drafted into law in Minnesota in 2014. The main objectives that the authors, who drafted this bill, had was to strengthen the rights of both women and families in the workplace and to address gender gaps in pay.

As far as the expansion of family leave is concerned, the ratified version of WESA now ensures that both pregnant and postpartum moms can take unpaid leave in accordance with the state's Parental Leave Act. Additionally, after a baby is born, she is now allowed to spend as much as 12 weeks at home taking care of her newborn.

What does it mean to be wrongfully terminated from your job?

It's not always easy to understand what it means to be wrongfully terminated from your job. There is a lot that goes into this, so it's important to collect as much information as possible as to clear the air and help you determine which steps to take next.

Here are some of the many details you should review:

  • The reason for your termination. If your employment is considered at-will, it doesn't mean that your company can fire you for any reason. For example, a termination that violations an anti-discrimination law is illegal.
  • The many forms of discrimination. There is more than one form of discrimination, including those on the basis of age, gender, race, color, religion and disability (among others).
  • Contractual obligations. If you signed an employment contract, your employer is bound to the terms and conditions within. An example of this would be a contract stating that you will remain an employee for a minimum of three years. If you are terminated early, you may be able to file a wrongful termination lawsuit to seek compensation.

A brief look at sexual harassment claims under state, federal law

In our previous post, we began looking the topic of wrongful termination and sexual harassment in the context of Taylor Swift's recent groping claims. As we noted last time, underneath the defamation and assault/battery claims, the Taylor Swift groping incident raises not only the issue of wrongful termination but also that of sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment is prohibited under both federal and Minnesota law. Whether one is talking about federal or state law, though, sexual harassment is understood to be unwelcome or offensive communications or conduct of a sexual nature in the workplace. There are two common types of sexual harassment cases recognized by the courts: those termed "quid pro quo" sexual harassment; and cases involving a "hostile work environment." 

What is Family and Medical Leave Act retaliation?

As you probably know, there are laws in place to protect employees who exercise their rights in regards to the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Despite the fact that there is federal protection in place, there are still times when employers engage in some type of FMLA retaliation. There are many forms of retaliation, such as when an employer terminates a person's employment for taking FMLA leave.

Nurses who suffer from depression can face a tough road

Nursing is a tough profession. Many nurses deal with the trials of life and the horrors of death on a daily basis. While facing these types of events can be a daily occurrence, it doesn't make them any easier to deal with.

As such, it's not uncommon for nurses to suffer from depression. Many nurses might feel uneasy about making the fact that they suffer from this condition public. However, they shouldn't have to, because depression is likely covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Taylor Swift groping trial raises issues of wrongful termination, sexual harassment

Readers who pay attention to pop culture and celebrity news may have heard that Taylor Swift has been in the news lately in connection with groping claims. What’s going on is this: she countersued a former radio DJ for assault and battery after he filed a defamation lawsuit in which he claimed entitlement to damages for his termination from the radio station where he formerly worked.

The firing occurred after the radio station got word that he had allegedly grabbed Taylor Swift’s behind during a backstage meet-and-greet in Denver. He accused her of lying in order to have him fired. While his claims were tossed out, she was successful with her counterclaims. There are a couple interesting issues at play in this case from the perspective of employment law. 

Three things psychology professionals should keep in mind about disciplinary proceedings

We’ve previously looked at how physicians are regulated in the state of Minnesota, and the role of the Board of Medicine in licensing, regulating, and disciplining physicians in this state. Just as the medical profession has a professional board to handle regulatory and disciplinary matters, so too does the profession of psychology. According to the Minnesota Board of Psychology, ensuring safe, competent and ethical provision of psychological services is its primary mission.

Under Minnesota law, those practicing in the profession of psychology are bound by the various ethical rules of conduct governing the profession, just as physicians are. These rules touch on a number of areas of practice, including client privacy, provider competence and objectivity, handling of client records, informed consent, clients’ rights, public statements about a provider’s practice, termination of services, and mandatory reporting. 

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