Walmart's Employee Handbook Cost them $187.6 Million; What Could Your Employee Handbook Cost You?
Pennsylvania's Superior Court upheld a jury verdict of $187.6 million against retail giant, Walmart, Inc. in part for denying employee's meal and rest periods as promised in their employee handbooks. Walmart's violation regarding breaks and meal periods was not statutory but rather contractual.
Pennsylvania law does not require meal breaks or rest breaks to employees over 18 years of age. However, Walmart's … Read More
Adult Children under ACA - Age 26 Requires Changes to Employer Health Care Plans
If you are an employer that offers group health insurance to your employees and their children, you will soon be required to offer coverage to your employees' adult children up to the age of 26. Under current law, young adults typically lose health insurance coverage under their parents' plans at age 19 unless they are enrolled in college full time.* In addition, young adults covered through public … Read More
Grandfathered Plans Under Health Care Reform
As part of health care reform, on March 23, 2010, President Obama signed the Patient and Protection Affordable Care Act, into law. Employer-provided health care plans that existed as of March 23, 2010 and had at least had one person enrolled in the plan at such time, were exempt or rather grandfathered from many but not all of the provisions of the Act.
This is key, as grandfathered plans do not have to comply … Read More
Since the murder of a Yale Graduate student, workplace violence has become a predominate topic in the news. Investigators, from the beginning, have maintained that the murder of Annie Le was an instance of workplace violence, asserting such claims as though to relieve the anxiety of students, faculty, and media. However, workplace violence is one of the leading causes of job related deaths and the fastest growing … Read More
The Fair Labor Standards Act: Minimum Wage, Overtime and Travel Time
The purpose of this white paper is to provide an overview of the Fair Labor Standards Act and related laws in the context of the requirement of paying minimum wage, overtime and travel time for many employees.
The Fair Labor Standards Act (the "Act" or "FLSA") was enacted in 1938 as part of President Franklin Roosevelt's "New Deal" legislation. The goal of the Act is to maintain the "minimum … Read More
15 Questions to Ask Before Firing Anyone
You may have heard that Arizona is an "at will" state. It is. This means that employees work at "the will" of the employer. Just as employees can keep working or resign if they wish, employers can terminate employees for a good reason or even for no reason.
Employers get in trouble, however, when they fire employees for "bad" reasons. Some bad reasons are obvious. Certainly you cannot fire employees because of … Read More
Rules for Conducting Employee Background Checks
During the hiring process, no doubt you try to verify the information on applicants' résumés to help weed out those who may be dishonest or unqualified. You probably ask references and previous employers about a candidate's competence, productivity and integrity. And you may call professional associations to confirm certifications and state agencies to confirm licenses.
These are basic screening … Read More
Human Resources Check-up
Have you kept current with changes and trends in employment law? If audited by a government agency, are you comfortable that you would face no penalties? Do you know what your human resource strengths and weaknesses are? If you answered "No" or "I don't know" to any of the above questions, it is time for a Human Resources Checkup!
Things We Look For:
Personnel Files: Do you maintain comprehensive, … Read More
Dog Bites Landscaper! (What should you do?)
If a customer's dog bites you, a landscaper, pest control operator, utility worker or other worker that has a legitmate and legal reason to access someone's property, the first thing to do is seek medical attention! After receiving medical care, you might want to think about this: who should pay for medical care? In most cases, the dog's owner will be liable for damages, but that will depend upon a couple of … Read More
Obesity in the Workplace
No doubt being overweight can pose a health problem. But is it a protected disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1992 (ADA) that bars employers from discriminating against employees or prospective employees who are obese? According to a recent decision of the Montana Supreme Court and similar decisions in the federal courts, it is, or at least can be.
In BNSF Railway Co. v. … Read More