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Bills proposing amendments to USERRA

Three bills to amend USERRA have been introduced recently.

HR 3670. The Transportation Security Administration (the folks at the airports who can see into you with their Super Detecto Rays) are presently exempt from abiding by USERRA. This bill would make the TSA subject to USERRA. [UPDATE: On 30 May, the House suspended the rules and agreed to this bill on a voice vote.]

S. 2299. Currently, the United States Attorney General can bring suit against a State or State agency on behalf of a servicemember, but the case is styled as an action by the United States against the State of ___. S. 2299 would change the nature of the suit to one that is truly on behalf of the United States. The servicemember whose claim is the basis for the suit may intervene to obtain specific relief.

S. 3233 (the Servicemembers Access to Justice Act). This bill would amend several provisions in USERRA, including the following provisions:

  • Section 2. “A State’s receipt or use of Federal financial assistance for any program or activity of a State shall constitute a waiver of sovereign immunity, under the 11th amendment to the Constitution or otherwise….”
  • Section 3. “Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any clause of any agreement between an employer and an employee that requires arbitration of a dispute arising under this chapter shall not be enforceable.”
  • Section 4. In cases where the plaintiff suffered no loss of wages, he or she could recover for any other “actual monetary losses.” In addition, this sction would change the amount of liquidated damages to at least $10,000. Finally, it would add a provision allowing punitive damages if the employer has 25 or more employees and the trial court “determines that the employer’s violation of this chapter was done with malice or reckless indifference to the rights of the person under” USERRA.
  • This entry was posted by Edward at 6:20 PM, 03 June 2012 | Categories: Military Service

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