Blog – South Florida Trial Practice

To successfully navigate South Florida’s court system, it’s key to have a trusted team of experienced trial litigators to help you tackle complex legal issues throughout the region. Dori is a regular contributor to the South Florida Trial Blog, she posts on topics related to employment discrimination and harassment, including new court decisions and legislation, compliance, best practices, interesting trends in workplace relations and employment-related issues affecting Florida employers.

Recent Blog Posts

  • Don’t Fall Victim to a Curse – Uncommon Religions Are Covered by Title VII How do you respond when someone tells you they practice voodoo?  How about Santeria or Rastafari?   Do you laugh or scoff in response, do you start singing Sublime??  Here in South Florida, a multicultural and multi-ethnic area, there are a plethora of minor religions being practiced by thousands of people.  As a result, laughing or kidding about someone’s religion, even if seems like a joke to you, is the wrong move in an employment setting. As an example, news of a... More
  • Florida Considers Going Unlimited With Medical Marijuana In November 2016, Florida voters overwhelmingly approved, with more than 70% voting yes, expanded medical marijuana by passing Amendment 2. Now comes the tough work of implementing Amendment 2.  One bill, SB 614, proposes to throw out the current medical marijuana system in Florida (which was set up in 2015 to grow, process and distribute low-THC cannabis oil) which strictly capped the number of businesses allowed to participate in medical marijuana. St. Petersburg Republican Jeff Brandes, the proponent of SB 614, calls... More
  • Christian Florist Loses Gay Wedding Flower Case Who could have ever guessed that post same-sex marriage legalization, litigation would focus on the issues of wedding cakes and wedding florists.  But, now comes recent news that the case pending in Washington State involving the florist who declined to provide flowers for her friend’s gay wedding has lost her case at the state level. As Barronelle Stutzman explained, in her own words to The Seattle Times, because she is a Christian weddings have a particular significance to her and despite her... More
  • HR and Payroll Must Play Defense – IRS Tax Return Phishing Scams on the Rise Florida, dating back to its early years, has always been a hot bed of scams and fraud.  These days, Florida leads the nation in IRS tax return fraud.  And, that is because Florida has a large transient population, no state income tax (so no state review of tax returns which provide a second layer of scrutiny), elderly population with low income but valid Social Security number, etc. Doctor’s offices and hospitals have been ripe for the collection of Social Security numbers,... More
  • Texas Dives Into the Toilet Controversy Back in 2015 Houston, Texas attempted to and failed to pass an expanded human equal rights ordinance (“HERO”) which would have made it illegal to discriminate against someone based on 15 different “protected characteristics,” including sex, race, religion, sexual orientation and gender identity. Now, the State of Texas has thought it prudent to follow the lead of North Carolina and pass a state wide law restricting bathroom access. Texas Senate Bill 6 would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools,... More
  • Third Time’s the Charm – City of Jacksonville Passes Human Rights Ordinance That Protects Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity After previous efforts that failed in 2012 and 2016, the City of Jacksonville, Florida has now passed an expanded human rights ordinance (“HRO”) that provides employment and housing protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity. This time around the City Council addressed several issues that created hurdles during the prior efforts to expand the HRO. First, sexual orientation and gender identity are defined in the HRO; Second, gender identity must be demonstrated in a “consistent and uniform” manner and be sincerely held,... More
  • Did You Get Your Super Bowl Squares? Well, its a few days until kickoff at Superbowl LI.  If your office is like many, someone is collecting money for Super Bowl squares.  Most employees and employers view a friendly office pool as all in good fun and most of the time it is. 68091334 – game day football party table. But, don’t forget, under Florida law workplace gambling is technically illegal and could form the basis for a Florida whistleblower action. ————————-  Dori K. Stibolt is a partner with the law firm... More
  • Happy New Year! – Florida’s Minimum Wage to Rise in 2017 Happy New Year!  Also, its time for Florida employers to pay attention to the new 2017 Florida minimum wage.  As of January 1, 2017, Florida’s minimum wage will rise from the current rate of $8.05 per hour to $8.10 per hour. Under Florida Statute § 448.110 4(a) and (b), the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity must calculate Florida’s minimum wage based upon the increase, if any, in the Federal Consumer Price Index for Urban Earners and Clerical Workers in the southern... More
  • HB2 – Trying to Flush It Down the Drain By many accounts, North Carolina has lost in excess of $400 million in business revenue (and a whole lot of basketball games) due to HB2.  HB2, for those who don’t know, is the controversial law that limited who could use which bathrooms and was the subject of fierce protests by many in the LGBTQ communities.  HB2 also limited state level discrimination claims (later rescinded by the legislature) and restricted the ability of local municipalities to raise the minimum wage. Now, Charlotte City... More
  • On-Call Scheduling – On the Way Out? News today that New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has reached agreements with several large retail companies to limit on-call scheduling of employees.  On-call scheduling has been a way for large companies with fluctuating staffing needs to schedule employees depending on weather, holidays, shopper volume, etc.  However, many employee rights’ organizations have lobbied against what they see as an unfair practice since on-call scheduling may make cause employees difficulties in scheduling transportation, child care, school/classes, or other employment. While Florida does not have... More