Arizona's Minimum Wage Increased in 2015 with No Change in 2016
As of January 1, 2015, the minimum wage in Arizona increases to $8.05 per hour. In 2006, the Raise the Arizona Minimum Wage for Working Arizonans Act became law. In part it provides for annual increases in the Arizona's minimum wage. Increases to Arizona's minimum wage are based on cost of living increases using the Department of Labor, Consumer Price Index of All Urban Consumers (CPI-U). There … Read More
Three Important Components of the Family Medical Leave Act
In 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the Family and Medical Leave Act ("FMLA"), which allows employees time off from their job to bond with their children, care for ill family members, or recover from their own serious health problems — all without fear of losing their job. The FMLA entitles employees to a total of 12 weeks of unpaid leave during a 12-month period for any of the following: … Read More
How Does Arizona Same Sex Marriage Impact HR?
On Friday October 17, 2014, same sex marriages became legal in Arizona. What are the changes that Arizona employers and their HR professionals need to be aware of?
1. The definition of spouse in employee manuals and handbooks. If a generic definition, such as "spouse" is used, there should not be a need to update. However, if a specific definition was used such as "wife" or "husband" the employee manual may need … Read More
ICE Storm Predicted Arizona Employers Beware, I-9 Audits are on the Rise
By: Kraig J. Marton, Esq. and Jerrie Martinez-Palombo, M.Ed., SPHR
In a speech to the US House of Representatives, Secretary of Home Land Security, Janet Napolitano, stated that since 2009, Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE"), has conducted more than 6,000 audits of employers for I-9 compliance and levied fines to non-compliant employers of more than $76 million!
The Immigration Reform and … Read More
Eight Warning Signs of Potential Employment Termination and Eight Ways to Respond
By: Kraig J. Marton, Esq.
Many employees come in to work and suddenly find themselves laid off or terminated and without a job. The termination comes as a complete surprise. The employee has received warning signs which may or may not have been recognized. If an employee looks for and can recognize the signs, the employee may be able to avoid the termination, look for another job … Read More
Overtime Roulette: Seven Mistakes that Could Cost You
The Wage and Hour Division of the Department of Labor ("DOL") primarily ensures that employers are in compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act, ("FLSA"). In short, the FLSA requires that non-exempt employees be paid at least the minimum wage for all hours worked and overtime pay at 1 ½ times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of 40 hours in a workweek. The FLSA also has child … Read More
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
Taser International v. Ward - Another Reason to Have Your Employees Sign Employment Contracts
Taser International v. Ward was decided by the Arizona Court of Appeals on May 13, 2010 and it demonstrates what can go wrong when high level employees are not subject to any contractual restrictions.
The decision states - when an executive was not bound by any employment contract or covenant not to compete, he was free to make reasonable preparations during his employment to compete with his employer.
The Court … Read More