The attorneys who comprise Miller Johnson’s Employment-Health Care practice group recognize that the health care industry is faced with unique challenges when it comes to balancing employment law with industry regulations.

Our experienced team of attorneys work closely with hospitals, nursing homes and other health care organizations to help anticipate employment issues, interpret and apply the law and ensure both the organization and the employee’s rights are protected.

The team offers counsel in the following areas:

  • American with Disabilities Act (ADA)
  • Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
  • Workers’ compensation
  • Managing a unionized health care facility
  • Employee benefits & executive compensation
  • Discharge and discipline
  • Deferred compensation
  • Recruiting and hiring
  • Immigration
  • Peer review
  • Whistleblowers
  • Wage & Hour
  • Union Avoidance
  • HC criminal background check

We seek to provide innovative, solution-oriented and cost-effective services.  Following are some examples:

  • Miller Johnson successfully defended Borgess against an Americans with Disabilities Act claim brought by an HIV-infected surgical technician who was removed from the operating room following his diagnosis. We obtained summary judgment on behalf of Borgess based on the argument that the risk of transmission of the virus was sufficiently great that the technician was a direct threat to patients. The decision was affirmed on appeal in a published decision.  (Mauro v Borgess Medical Center, 137 F.3d 398 (6th Cir. 1998).
  • Miller Johnson worked with a medical center in the center of the state to add a cash balance account feature to its basic defined benefit pension plan for the purpose of funding matching contributions relating to the employer’s 403(b) tax-sheltered annuity program and to fund retiree health benefits for certain older employees. This unique design satisfied their financial and human resource objectives.
  • In response to a number of unfair labor practice charges filed by the Operating Engineers arising out of an organizing drive, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a complaint against an extended care facility in West Michigan and scheduled an administrative trial.  At the same time, the NLRB filed suit in federal court seeking a temporary injunction against the extended care facility.  The facility prevailed on both fronts.  Utilizing a little-known statute enacted to indemnify small employers against the costs of litigation initiated by the United States, the extended care facility then filed a claim against the NLRB for recovery of its attorneys’ fees.  Despite the extended care facility’s affiliation with a larger health care organization and adverse administrative precedent, we collected more than $30,000 from the NLRB.  A representative of the NLRB later commented that he had never heard of a recovery so large.
  • Miller Johnson’s team has provided immigration counsel to a West Michigan research facility since its inception. We have assisted the facility in its efforts to recruit and retain top medical researchers from around the world, and our work has included the development of a J-1 visa exchange visitor program. This allows the facility to issue its own J-1 visas, thus expediting employment authorization and reducing future legal fees to obtain visas for qualified new hires.

Miller Johnson’s Employment-Health Care practice group monitors current developments and recent trends in employment and labor law which affect the health care industry.  We communicate these changes to clients through several means, including:

  • Miller Johnson’s Employment Law Update newsletter has an article focused on a matter of importance to the health care industry in each issue.
  • Client Alerts are sent out via e-mail for topics which are time-sensitive.  They cover a wide-range of subjects in the employee benefits and employment and labor area.