Businesses of all types and sizes throughout the United States, Mexico and beyond bring their disputes to Gardere's litigation team and receive practical, responsive, boutique-style attention in return. Our clients have access to the firepower and value of a well-known and highly-regarded Firm's capabilities and interdisciplinary strengths.
Gardere has a national and international energy practice formed around our Energy Industry Team, which is a multidisciplinary group of approximately 80 attorneys with diverse backgrounds, experience and skills specific to the energy industry. Our team includes attorneys who have served as in-house counsel for major energy companies, providing a depth of insight into our clients' needs, issues and concerns. We understand and regularly practice in virtually every sector of the energy, and we represent a wide variety of industry participants from multinational corporations to individuals.
From our offices in the United States and Mexico, our International Practice helps clients operate in today’s global economy. We have more than 30 professionals operating as a boutique within an Am Law 200 law firm and are able to provide focused service with the resources of a large firm. We understand that clients who are engaged in the global marketplace need lawyers who can operate seamlessly across multiple jurisdictions. Our international experts are multi-lingual, are culturally fluent and intimately familiar with various legal systems across the world, especially those in Latin America. Whether you need help with commercial transactions, regulatory matters, customs and import regulations, immigration matters, M&A and joint ventures, international disputes, or international tax planning, Gardere’s international team is here to assist you.
We represent domestic and foreign private funds in all aspects of fund formation, fund operations, platform and add-on acquisitions, and portfolio company operations. Our team has a reputation for being the go-to-lawyers for private equity funds, hedge funds, venture capital funds and family offices. We are known for our vast deal experience, the efficient way we staff and manage our work, and the way we maintain our relationships. We get deals done with sophisticated, strategic, and practical advice tailored to the needs of our clients.
*Not admitted to practice law.
Are you in compliance with the new regulations under the ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA) issued on March 25, 2011? If not, you still have time. The effective date of the new regulations is May 24, 2011. The gist of the new regulations is to provide more coverage to more individuals. In fact, one EEOC investigator recently opined that under the new ADAA regulations, everyone is assumed to be disabled. Now, the EEOC will focus on whether discrimination occurred, meaning that employers should not expect an extensive analysis regarding whether a person is “disabled.”
Disability Redefined. The primary change to the Americans with Disabilities Act concerns the broadening of the definition of “disability.”
The regulations now mandate that the definition of “disability” be broadly construed. A disability can be found under three scenarios:
(1) a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities;
(2) a record (or past history) of such an impairment; or
(3) being regarded as having a disability.
Major Life Activity. One of the most surprising developments is the expansive definition of “major life activity.” A “major life activity” now includes actions such as working, interacting with others and concentrating, as well as the operations of major bodily functions. The final regulations state that major bodily functions include the operation of an individual organ within a body system ( e.g., the operation of the kidney, liver, or pancreas). As a result of the ADAAA’s recognition of major bodily functions as major life activities, it will be easier to find that individuals with certain types of impairments have a disability. For example, if an individual has difficulty performing a “class or broad range of jobs in various classes”, he is considered disabled even if he can perform the specific aspects of his current position because he is substantially limited in the major life activity of working.
“Substantially Limits” is Now Pretty Moderate. The term “substantially limits” is to be construed broadly and now requires a lower degree of functional limitation. Each matter requires an individualized assessment. In fact, an impairment need not prevent or severely or significantly limit a major life activity in order to constitute a disability, leaving practitioners to wonder if “substantially limits” now means “moderately limits.”
The EEOC has issued a number of summaries to assist practitioners navigate the new rules. For more information, please visit the Equal Employment Opportunity website at http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/regulations/ada_qa_final_rule.cfm. To learn more about the new ADAA regulations and to determine if your individualized assessment is valid, contact Rachel Steely at email@example.com or the other Labor and Employment professionals at Gardere Wynne Sewell.
The publications contained in this site do not constitute legal advice. Legal advice can only be given with knowledge of the client's specific facts. By putting these publications on our website we do not intend to create a lawyer-client relationship with the user. Materials may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. This information should in no way be taken as an indication of future results.
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