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PER Human Resources – April 2017

April 2017
Want to know the latest buzz in the HR arena?  Professional Employer Resources has a world of information in our newsletter. Not only is it fun it’s resourceful! Including, important changes to federal and state employment practices.

Eighty five percent (85%) of all employment lawsuits can be prevented!

Help! My Company Has Fallen
Victim to a Workplace Scam!
HR Stories From The Front Lines*

On almost a weekly basis, a report of the latest workplace scam hits the airwaves. From W-2 email phishing schemes (where cybercriminals posing as company executives request copies of payroll data) to the CEO scheme (where a cybercriminal calls the company pretending to be the CEO and requests that payments be redirected to another account), these scams are becoming more commonplace and companies are more often falling victim to this type of attack.

Is your company prepared for the latest scam? Read ahead to learn how a lack of preparedness caused one company to fall victim to one of these schemes.

Read more

(*These incidents really happened; but names and other details have been changed.)

 

Stay Up to Date on the Latest Employment Legal Updates

FEDERAL UPDATES
Frequently Absent Employees Require Careful Management under the ADA
A No Dogs Allowed Policy Might Not Work For Emotional Support Service Dogs (or other animals)
Another Costly Lesson about Sex Discrimination
2016 EEOC Litigation Data Released
What Employers Can Learn From This “Textbook” Disability Discrimination Case Involving Post Offer, Pre-Employment Medical Examinations
Sometimes It Only Takes One Comment To Create A Hostile Work Environment
Warning To Employers – Do Not Ignore Reasonable Accommodations During the Hiring
Process!

STATE UPDATES
Arizona: The Fate of Arizona’s Proposition 206 Has Been Decided
California: Coming Soon to a California Workplace Near You — Indoor Heat Regulations
California: Rules Governing the Inspection of Personnel Files in California
California: Employers – Are You Separately Paying Your Commission-Only Employees for Rest Breaks?
California: Court Takes A Surprising Stance On Healthcare Meal Waivers
Massachusetts: Handling an Employee’s Request for Indefinite Leave in Massachusetts
New York: Employers – Are You Ready for Paid Family Leave?
Oregon: Employers Breathe a Sigh of Relief With Court’s Rejection of BOLI’s Overtime Guidance Materials For Oregon Manufacturers
Vermont: Employee Drug Testing in Vermont


Do you have an HR question that has been keeping you up at night?
The following questions were submitted to our HR Professionals in the past month …

Question #1
We may have a weird situation (although probably not all that uncommon). A few months back an employee got injured (off the job) and required a medical leave and then work modification.
In the course of completing that paperwork it came to our attention that the employee was using a false name and social security number.
When confronted he admitted this and refused to give us proper documentation and thus was terminated for falsifying his employment records and his application.

Now, a few months later, there is talk that a few more employees may have alternative social security numbers than those provided upon hire.
Assuming they are willing to provide us with the correct and current information, what is the proper policy here?

We think the best course of action would be to fire and rehire them under the correct documents but I am not sure what our liability there is or what to do about the fact that we have in some cases possibly
5-10 years of employment records and payroll taxes using a different social security number.

Question #2
I have a salaried employee who has taken an excessive number of full days off. To date (3/10/2017), he has taken 8 full days off.
Can we tell him any more personal full days off taken now to June 30, 2017 will be without pay?

View the Answers

Could Buying a Lunch for a Customer
Result in Sexual Harassment?

 

Brain Teaser

Over the past several weeks, Mitch, the manager at Salad Xpress, has noticed that one of the restaurant’s regulars causes quite the stir when she comes there for lunch.

This particular regular is a very attractive, buxom, young woman who is a receptionist at a nearby law firm.
Whenever she comes into the restaurant, several of the male employees drop what they are doing and vie for her attention.
There have even been several instances where a male employee has paid for this customer’s meal.

The customer does not seem to have a problem with this attention, but Mitch believes that this type of behavior could expose the company to the claim. What, if anything, should Mitch do?

  1. Mitch is overreacting. Since the customer has not complained about the male employees, there is nothing that Mitch needs to do at this time.
  2. Mitch should talk to his employees about their behavior towards this customer and encourage them to stop, as their conduct could easily be interpreted as sexual harassment.
  3. Mitch should keep a close eye on the employees when this customer comes into the restaurant and terminate any employee who buys a meal for this employee, as that conduct is inappropriate.
  4. This customer is causing a disruption in the workplace, Mitch should approach her and tell her that she can longer eat at the restaurant.

View the answer.

 

 

10 Things to Do Before
Terminating an Employee
HR Trends

“You’re fired!” These are the words employees dread hearing and HR Professionals hate uttering. It comes as no surprise that termination continues to be one of the most dreaded employment actions for HR Managers. Read ahead to ensure you follow our termination checklist.

Read More.


This information is provided by ePlace Solutions, Inc. which is solely responsible for its content. ePlace Solutions, Inc. is not engaged in rendering legal or other professional services. Federal and state laws are more complex than presented here. This information is simplified for the sake of brevity and is not a substitute for legal advice. ePlace Solutions, Inc. disclaims any liability, loss or risk incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this information.

Opt out of receiving similar emails in the future.

PER Human Resources – March 2017

March 2017
Want to know the latest buzz in the HR arena?  Professional Employer Resources has a world of information in our newsletter. Not only is it fun it’s resourceful! Including, important changes to federal and state employment practices.Eighty five percent (85%) of all employment lawsuits can be prevented!

When a Prankster Employee
Takes it Too Far
HR Stories From The Front Lines*

Humor and laughter are great stress reducers and can help bring workers closer together. Almost every workplace has at least one jokester on whom coworkers can rely for a good laugh to help the day pass more quickly.
However, in the workplace setting, there is a fine line between funny and inappropriate conduct. Sometimes employees can go too far and the “joke” can quickly create a harassing and/or hostile work environment.
Read on to see how one employer handled a workplace prankster.
 

Read more

(*These incidents really happened; but names and other details have been changed.)

 

Stay Up to Date on the Latest Employment Legal Updates

FEDERAL UPDATES
Preventing Retaliation is a Priority for OSHA
Employers Take Caution when Applying Your Voluntary Resignation Policy
Questionable Termination Practice Proves Costly for One Employer
Handling Employee Political Advocacy
Help is Available for Completing the New Form I-9
HR Professionals be on the Lookout for Form W-2 Scams
EEOC Issues Proposed Harassment Guidance
Stop – Read this Before you Call an Employee Who is on FMLA Leave
Increased Penalties for Violations of Various Federal Employment Laws
Dear Employee…Please be Advised that you FMLA Leave Expires on…

STATE UPDATES
Illinois: New Law Clarifies Employer Requirements Under the Employee Sick Leave Act
Maine: Now that Recreational Marijuana is Legal – Maine Employers Beware!
Missouri: It’s Official – Missouri is the 28th Right to Work State
New York: State Department of Labor’s Rules Governing Wage Payments via Direct Deposit or Paycard Invalidated
New York: New Regulations Relating to Wage Secrecy Policies in New York
Oregon: New Overtime Guidance Materials for Oregon Manufacturers and Other Industries
Washington DC: New Law Prohibiting Employers from Using Credit Information in Employment Decisions
Washington DC: Coming Soon – Paid Family Medical Leave


Do you have an HR question that has been keeping you up at night?
The following questions were submitted to our HR Professionals in the past month …
Question #1
I have a situation with a client that I would like to run by you.

  • Employee is going through a tough time with his partner. Apparently, there is some abuse/infidelity.
  • Employee has missed a lot of work and he has had the time through his 4 personal days and 6 sick days. Please note that he is almost out of personal and sick days and maybe 1 vacation day accrued so far.
  • Employee says he is just too depressed/stressed to come into work.
  • The tricky part is they have 3 HUGE projects due this month and he is the person responsible for these projects and the deadlines. They need him there to work.
  • He asked if he could work from home but his supervisor told him he had to come into the office to work. They don’t really telecommute within their company.
  • Employee is not seeking any medical help or therapy.

What can they do? Do they just address it as an attendance issue? The company is in a real pickle because the employee has the time but has these major deadlines to meet. I don’t believe this situation falls under ADA. He does
not qualify for FMLA because he has not been there 1 year.

Thoughts?

Question #2
We currently have a digital process for on-boarding new hires through an outside vendor. However, we still have our tenured employees with employee files (paper) in our restaurants. We are planning to scan existing employees’
files and upload them into the vendor’s system. If we cannot find an employee’s file, are we required to have the employee complete a new I-9?

View the Answers

Can you Recoup Losses Due to an Employee’s Sticky Fingers?

 

Brain Teaser

Bonnie, a long-time manager at 2Fast-4You Burgers, is being terminated for theft.

Yesterday, Clyde, the owner, noticed that last week’s daily cash deposits has a net deficit of over $500 compared with sales for shifts where Bonnie was the manager on duty. After reviewing the surveillance
footage for that week, Clyde saw several occasions where Bonnie pocketed cash from the safe. There is no question that she took the money.

While Bonnie’s termination is inevitable, Clyde also wants to recoup his losses by withholding the stolen monies from her final paycheck. Can Clyde deduct the money from Bonnie’s final pay?

  1. Clyde may deduct the entire amount. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), deductions for employee theft are permissible because employers are entitled to make
    themselves whole following employee wrongdoing. The location of the business does not matter.
  2. Clyde’s ability to deduct from Bonnie’s wages may be limited. Under the FLSA, an employer can make deductions from employee wages,
    but the deduction cannot take the employee under minimum wage. The location of the business does not matter.
  3. The location of the business does not matter. Clyde cannot make any deduction. Such a deduction is prohibited under the FLSA.
  4. It depends on the location of the business. Before making any deduction, Clyde should check the laws in his state to see if such a deduction is permissible.

View the answer.

 

 

Restroom Accommodation for Transgender Employees (and Patrons)
HR Trends

More and more states are enacting laws that prohibit discrimination against and require the accommodation of transgender individuals.
Enforcement agencies are also providing guidance to employers on accommodating transgender individuals. One of the latest targets for transgender accommodation – the bathroom.
Read ahead to learn what your company should do to comply with this latest HR trend.

Read More.


This information is provided by ePlace Solutions, Inc. which is solely responsible for its content. ePlace Solutions, Inc. is not engaged in rendering legal or other professional services. Federal and state laws are more complex than presented here. This information is simplified for the sake of brevity and is not a substitute for legal advice. ePlace Solutions, Inc. disclaims any liability, loss or risk incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this information.Opt out of receiving similar emails in the future.

PER Human Resources – Newsletter February 2017

February 2017
Want to know the latest buzz in the HR arena?  Professional Employer Resources has a world of information in our newsletter. Not only is it fun it’s resourceful! Including, important changes to federal and state employment practices.Eighty five percent (85%) of all employment lawsuits can be prevented!

Is an Off-Duty Lap Dance Request
Cause for Alarm?

HR Stories From The Front Lines*

 

In today’s economy, your employees are more likely to moonlight in order to make ends meet. In general, this is permissible – provided that the employee’s second job doesn’t interfere with the workplace.
But, what happens when the employee’s second job causes one of your managers to engage in some questionable off-duty behavior? Read ahead to learn how one HR Manager handled this unique situation.
 

Read more

(*These incidents really happened; but names and other details have been changed.)

 

Stay Up to Date on the Latest Employment Legal Updates

FEDERAL UPDATES
Another Lesson on the Importance of Conducting a Thorough Sexual Harassment Investigation
The DOT’s New Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse
Is a Mandatory Flu Shot Policy a Cost Effective Solution for Employers?
US DOJ Weighs in on Unfair Immigration-Related Employment Practices
Mind the Gap – A Large “Gap” in Time May not Insulate Your Company from a Retaliation Claim

STATE UPDATES
California: Do California’s New Sexual Harassment Training Requirements Affect Your Business?
California: DLSE Releases FAQs on California New Minimum Wage Requirement
Kentucky: It’s Official – Kentucky is the 27th Right to Work State
Massachusetts: New Standard for Unpaid Meal Periods may Impact Massachusetts Employers


Do you have an HR question that has been keeping you up at night?
The following questions were submitted to our HR Professionals in the past month …
Question #1
Our company would like to implement a points program where we issue citations (negative points) to employees for policy violations and citations (positive points) to employees for good behavior.
The points would ultimately impact the employee’s potential pay increases at review time. Do you recommend implementing this type of program?

Question #2
Our business is located in PA.

We have an employee (A) who is in a romantic relationship with another employee (B). They are not employed in the same department. Employee A reported to her supervisor that she was assaulted by Employee B
(they don’t live together). Employee A’s supervisor told HR. What is the employer’s duty in this situation? Thank you for your help.

View the Answers

Does FMLA Caregiver Leave Include a
Hawaiian Vacation?

 

Brain Teaser

Six weeks ago, Peter requested FMLA leave to care for his wife, who has terminal cancer. He provided medical certification and complied with all requirements for taking FMLA leave. His leave was designated as FMLA
for a period of 12 weeks.
Yesterday, Julie, Peter’s coworker, told you that she saw pictures on Instagram of Peter and his wife on Waikiki Beach. Julie then showed you the pictures. Peter’s wife appears to be the picture of health and,
from what you have seen, they appear to be thoroughly enjoying their Hawaiian getaway with snorkeling, surfing, kayaking, and other strenuous physical activities.

You are shocked by this information and disappointed that Peter would abuse FMLA in such a manner. Your first instinct is to terminate Peter’s employment, but is this allowable? How should you proceed?

  1. Peter should be terminated. He was clearly lying about his need for FMLA leave.
  2. Peter should remain on FMLA leave and should not be disciplined for how his time on FMLA was spent. Peter provided all of the required information to take FMLA leave to care for his wife.
    It is not your place to question his methods for providing care for his wife.
  3. Call Peter and instruct him to return to work immediately, since the pictures prove that his wife no longer needs him to care for her.
  4. Conduct an investigation and make a determination as to whether Peter is actually abusing FMLA leave.

View the answer.

 

 Do I Really Have to Give Baby-Daddy Leave?

HR Trends

Your employee Jack’s girlfriend recently had a baby. This morning, Jack came into your office requesting time off so that he can “bond” with his new son. How would you handle this request?

Read More.


This information is provided by ePlace Solutions, Inc. which is solely responsible for its content. ePlace Solutions, Inc. is not engaged in rendering legal or other professional services. Federal and state laws are more complex than presented here. This information is simplified for the sake of brevity and is not a substitute for legal advice. ePlace Solutions, Inc. disclaims any liability, loss or risk incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this information.Opt out of receiving similar emails in the future.

Testimonials

Partnering with PER has allowed our rapidly growing business to focus on our core competencies. We are now able to confidently handle HR issues professionally and offer “large company” Employee Benefits to attract the best talent in our industry.

Sunit - President - Luxury Travel Agency - Orlando, Florida

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