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PER Human Resources – December 2018

December 2018
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!

The Most Shocking Terminations of 2018
HR Stories From The Front Lines*

Our HR Professionals provide support for thousands of terminations throughout the year, most of which involve typical “run-of-the-mill” offenses. Surprisingly, there are always a handful of cases where the employee’s conduct shocks us, and we’re left wondering how someone could actually act that way at work. Click here to read about the top five shockers from 2018..*

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
NEW CASE: Employer Must Pay for Post-Offer Medical Exams
NEW CASE: Harassment Policies Should Be Provided In Multiple Languages
NEW RULE: DOL Eliminates “80/20” Tip Credit Rule

STATE UPDATES
All States: 2019 Minimum Wage Check-Up
All States: Is The Minimum Required Salary For Exempt Employees Increasing In Your State In 2019?
Arkansas: NEW LAW: Arkansas Voters Approve Increase Of Minimum Wage
California: NEW LAW – Minimum Wage Increases For Certain California Cities
Illinois: REMINDER – Illinois Business Expense Reimbursement Requirement Begins January 1st
Illinois: NEW LAW – Illinois Health Care Violence Prevention Act Takes Effect January 1st
Illinois: NEW LAW: Starting January 1st Illinois Service Member Employment And Reemployment Rights Act To Protect Illinois’ Military Service Members
Minnesota: NEW LAW – St. Paul To Increase Minimum Wage To $15 Per Hour
Missouri: NEW LAW: Missouri Voters Approve Increase Of Minimum Wage
Missouri: NEW LAW: Missouri Legalizes Medicinal Marijuana
New Mexico: NEW LAW – Minimum Wage Increases For Certain New Mexico Localities
New York: NEW LAW – New York City To Require Lactation Rooms
Washington: NEW LAW – Minimum Wage Increases For Certain Washington Cities
Washington: COMING SOON: New Posting Requirements For All DC Employers
Washington: NEW LAW – Washington DC Elimination Of Tip Credit Repealed
Washington: NEW LAW: DC To Require Sexual Harassment Training For Tipped Employees


Do you have an HR question keeping you up at night?
The following question was submitted to our HR Professionals in the past month …

Question #1
I recently received an anonymous complaint via our Employee Complaint Hotline where the employee complained that one of our Area Coaches was acting in a discriminatory manner towards women. Can you please provide me with guidance on how to best investigate this complaint?

View the Answer

Even Easy Terminations Lead to Claims

 

Brain Teaser

Henry has worked for your company for over a decade and, until recently, has been a good performer. However, over the past six months, Henry’s performance has started to slide.

You have talked to Henry about your observations with his performance on several occasions, but you did not document any of these conversations. During your conversations, Henry admitted that his performance has slipped and that he has been making several mistakes. Each time, Henry promises he will improve, but he hasn’t shown any improvement.

Last week, Henry asked for a few days off to attend a convention for his church. While he was out, you discovered he had failed to complete a project by the deadline, negatively impacting a customer.

Based on his decline in performance and the recently discovered error, you decide to terminate Henry.

Yesterday, you were shocked when you received a charge from the EEOC claiming discrimination based on religion. You didn’t fire Henry because of his religion. Henry was fired because he wasn’t doing his job.

You tried to explain that to the EEOC. Likely, the EEOC responded:

  1. They completely understood. Once you explained the course of events, they could understand why Henry needed to be terminated and dismissed the charge.
  2. They asked you and Henry’s supervisor a lot of questions. It seemed like they were looking for ways that you’d discriminated against him. Making implications that you didn’t feel were accurate. You didn’t feel it went well and you don’t know what will happen next.
  3. They asked to see documentation of Henry’s performance problems. They wanted to see the evidence that you’d talked to him about his poor performance. They asked if Henry was disciplined for his poor performance, in writing. They asked a lot of questions about his absence and why you terminated Henry immediately following his return to work. In the end, the EEOC concluded you had discriminated against Henry and his termination was retaliation for taking time off to attend a church conference.

View the answer.

 

Year End Checklist for 2018
HR Trends

The end of the year is a busy time for all HR Professionals. Along with the critical year end tasks that must be completed, there are also other items that should be completed to help your organization move seamlessly into 2019. To help you prepare for the new year, we have prepared a checklist of some of the key tasks you should complete before the start of 2019 …

Read more.


 

PER Human Resources – November 2018

November 2018
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 Jack Becomes Diane: How to Treat Transgender Employees in Today’s Workplace
HR Stories From The Front Lines*

As an HR manager, you’re confronted with various scenarios on a daily basis. For Marie, a Monday morning discussion with a warehouse employee presented a challenging situation that, unfortunately, she didn’t initially respond to properly. Thinking someone was playing a joke on her, she inappropriately laughed at the employee’s pronouncement that he was transitioning from a man to a woman. Read on to learn how she recovered her composure and took the appropriate steps regarding his transition and his privacy.*

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
EEOC Reports Uptick In Sexual Harassment Claims for 2018

STATE UPDATES
California: NEW LAW: California Amends Its Criminal History Inquiry Law
California: NEW LAW: California Amends Its Inspection of Pay Records Law
California: NEW LAW: California Enacts Wide Reaching Law In Response to #MeToo Movement
California: NEW LAW: California Exempts Certain Employees At Petroleum Facilities From Rest And Recovery Period Requirements
California: NEW LAW: California Expands Existing Lactation Accommodation Law
California: NEW LAW: New Requirements For California Talent Agencies
California: NEW LAW: New Sexual Harassment Training Requirements For California Employers
California: NEW LAW: Berkeley, California’s Minimum Wage to Increase October 1, 2018
California: NEW LAW: California To Require Human Trafficking Training In The Hospitality Industry
California: NEW LAW: California To Require Human Trafficking Training In The Transportation Industry
California: NEW LAW: San Diego, California’s Minimum Wage to Increase January 1, 2019
Florida: NEW LAW: Florida’s Minimum Wage to Increase January 1, 2019
Illinois: NEW POSTER: Illinois Requires Anti-Harassment Poster
Massachusetts: NEW LAW: New Requirements For Leave For Veterans In Massachusetts
Minnesota: NEW LAW: Minnesota’s Minimum Wage to Increase January 1, 2019
Montana: NEW LAW: Montana’s Minimum Wage to Increase January 1, 2019
New Jersey: NEW GUIDANCE: New Jersey Publishes FAQs Regarding Paid Sick Leave Law
New Jersey: NEW LAW: New Jersey’s Minimum Wage to Increase January 1, 2019
New Jersey: NEW POSTER: New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development Issues New Paid Sick Leave Mandatory Poster
New York: Good News For New York Employers – The Deadline To Provide Employees With Sexual Harassment Training Has Been Extended
New York: NEW GUIDANCE: New York State Final Sexual Harassment Model Policy & Sexual Harassment Training Programs Released
New York: NEW GUIDANCE: New York Publishes Sexual Harassment Materials In Several Languages
New York: NEW LAW: New York Requires Human Trafficking Informational Cards Be Posted In Hotels
Ohio: NEW LAW: Ohio’s Minimum Wage To Increase January 1, 2019
South Dakota: NEW LAW: South Dakota’s Minimum Wage to Increase January 1, 2019
Vermont: NEW LAW: Vermont’s Minimum Wage to Increase January 1, 2019


Do you have an HR question keeping you up at night?
The following questions were submitted to our HR Professionals in the past month …
Question #1
If an employee comes to us with an injury that happened outside of work, what are our obligations to him for holding his job (or not) while he is out?
This person has been working with us less than 3 months. He has not sought medical treatment yet for an injured hand when he punched a wall. Here’s what I have done so far:

  • Determined that he is ineligible for FMLA because he has not worked with us long enough
  • Encouraged him to seek medical treatment so that he could apply for state temporary disability benefits

In the meantime, his manager is saying that he needs to fill the position because now his “set crew” is one down and there needs to be a replacement.
So, are we obligated to hold his job while he is out and what if there isn’t a position for him when he returns? My first thought is the ADA, but I don’t know enough about it to reference it for this case.

Question #2
We have a manager that we strongly suspect of theft. A lot of number manipulation and missing money has come to light recently.
She is pregnant right now, so I am wondering how much concrete evidence we need to be able to terminate her?
Being aware she is a red flag is a concern to us but missing potentially thousands of dollars is of course a bigger concern to us. Please let me know how we can proceed with best practices in mind.

View the Answers

Lactation Breaks at Work – What is Required?

 

Brain Teaser

An employee has just returned from pregnancy leave and is requesting time and space to “pump” at work. You’re not sure what this entails or how this is going to impact your business – not to mention the comfort level of your other employees.

Which of the following accommodations are you required to offer?

  1. You have to give her several paid breaks throughout the day lasting 30 minutes or more.
  2. You must provide a private area for her to “pump” – someplace other than a bathroom.
  3. You must provide her unpaid time off to go home up to three times in an 8-hour shift to feed her baby.
  4. You do not have to accommodate the employee’s request. She can pump on her lunch break.

View the answer.

 

Minimize FMLA Woes in 5 Easy Steps
HR Trends

Managing FMLA leave can be stressful for HR Professionals, so the following guidelines are intended to eliminate potential headaches in five easy steps.

Click here.

PER Human Resources – October 2018

October 2018
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!

Three is a Crowd – No Doubt!
HR Stories From The Front Lines*

 

Managers are expected to exercise good judgement at work, but what happens when managers “hang out” with employees after work? Are they still expected to use good judgment? One HR manager decided that, yes, the company’s expectation extended beyond the workplace – at least when it comes to interacting with subordinates. See if you agree.*

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
NEW GUIDANCE: Department of Labor Publishes 6 New Opinion Letters
NEW GUIDANCE: Department of Labor Releases New Websites for Workers and Employers and Creates Office of Compliance Initiatives
NEW LAW: Federal Contractor Minimum Wage to Increase in 2019
NEW FORM: Federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Releases New Model FCRA Summary of Rights

STATE UPDATES
Illinois: NEW LAW: Illinois To Require Business Expense Reimbursement
Maine: NEW LAW: Maine’s New Sexual Harassment Training Requirements
Michigan: NEW LAW: Michigan To Incrementally Increase Minimum Wage to $12.00 Per Hour
Michigan: NEW LAW: Michigan’s New Earned Sick Time Law
New Jersey: PROPOSED REGULATION: New Jersey Department Of Labor Publishes Proposed Paid Sick Leave Regulations
New York: ATTENTION NYC EMPLOYERS: Did You Comply With The New Sexual Harassment Notice Requirements?
Tennessee: NEW LAW: New Drug Free Workplace Requirements For Tennessee Employers
Tennessee: NEW LAW: Tennessee Amends Workplace Weapons Laws To Allow Carrying Concealed Weapons
Washington: NEW GUIDANCE: Washington State Attorney General Publishes New Guide on Pregnancy Accommodations


Do you have an HR question keeping you up at night?
The following questions were submitted to our HR Professionals in the past month …
Question #1
Can employers require employees to speak English only during work hours?

Question #2
What is the procedure when denying an applicant due to credit and what documentation is needed?

View the Answers

End of Year Employee Gifts

 

Brain Teaser

After your company’s fantastic year, you’ve decided to reward your employees with a holiday “thank you” gift.

Some ideas include an option of cash, gift cards, or one of those delicious honey baked hams – save them from slaving away in the kitchen. Although cash is always popular, you want to ensure your gift doesn’t come with any unwanted consequences.

You remember vague details about gifts being taxable, but don’t know if:

  1. You can give your employees a gift of any value without it being taxable;
  2. All employee gifts are taxable income to the employee;
  3. Gifts up to $100 are not considered taxable;
  4. Nominal gifts are not taxable, but cash and gift cards always are.

View the answer.

 

Ban-The-Box Cheat Sheet
HR Trends

Nationwide, over 150 localities and 30 states have adopted some form of “ban-thebox”
legislation.

While many of these prohibitions apply only to government employers, an
increasing number of these laws also apply to private employers.

Click here to view a brief synopsis of which states and localities have “ban-the-box” laws that
affect private employers.


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.

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As the president of two companies I have relied on PER for a number of years for our HR and payroll needs. PER offers excellent service, very accessible staff that are knowledgeable and extremely professional.

Kim - President - Repping Firms - Florida and Georgia

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