Do you have employees who are paid the minimum wage? Do you have tipped employees? Do you employ workers in more than one state? Do you make wage deductions, pay on a per job basis, or pay a salary to nonexempt employees, and have to ensure that your employees’ wages do not fall below the minimum wage for hours worked? No matter where you are located, what your industry is, or how many workers you employ, you need up-to-the-minute wage and hour information to comply with federal, state, and local laws and avoid costly lawsuits and intrusive, time-consuming investigations by wage compliance agencies.
According to the Hiscox Guide to Employee Lawsuits, U.S. employers face a 10.5% chance of an employee lawsuit in 2016. While you think your business might be safe with only a 10.5% chance at an employee lawsuit, the cost of one of these lawsuits can truly harm a business. The average cost of an employee lawsuit is $160,000! These employment claims can come from a number of areas, including:
It’s the most wonderful time of the year...except for HR departments who are unprepared to navigate the minefield of issues surrounding holiday parties and celebrations. While your company may be dreaming of an inclusive, tasteful acknowledgement of the winter holidays, you could wind up facing sexual harassment, religious discrimination, workers’ compensation, and wage and hour claims without expert advice from legal counsel. Here are some helpful hints for enjoying the holiday season while avoiding potential HR pitfalls:
On November 16, 2018, the Austin-based 3rd Court of Appeals ruled that Austin's paid sick and safe leave ordinance violates the state constitution. Specifically, the court held that the ordinance is preempted by the Texas Minimum Wage Act.
Social media: every employer’s double-edged sword. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter allow you to reach millions of potential customers and clients with one click. But when negative feedback about an employee shows up in your mentions, your first instinct may to be terminate first, ask questions later. Chipotle made that mistake with one of its Minnesota franchises, and is now backtracking on its rash decision.
On Wednesday November 14, St. Paul, Minnesota Mayor Melvin Carter signed into law a $15 minimum wage ordinance, which followed a 7-0 vote in favor by the St. Paul City Council. This law will gradually increase wages to $15 per hour over the next 3.5-8.5 years, with the variance dependent on the size of the business, however, contract workers will remain exempt, however tipped employees are not exempt.
Could this happen to you? As reported by the New York Post, a Memphis employer found itself on the receiving end of a barrage of complaints after one of its employees was captured on social media wearing a racist t-shirt to the polls on Election Day. The employer investigated and decided to terminate the employee. For some, terminating the employee may seem like a foregone conclusion. Others may be wary that terminating the employee may violate the employee’s First Amendment right to free speech. How do you ensure that you comply with the law and protect your business reputation when it comes to your employees’ off duty activity-both on and off social media?
Midterm elections are upon us, and employees may be eligible for paid time off from work to vote. More than 20 states require employers to allow paid time off, some with some restrictions, and other states require at least unpaid time off. See the chart below for information on whether you must provide your employees with paid time off to vote, and what other provisions may apply.
On Thursday, November 1, Google employees across the world participated in a walkout in response to the company’s handling of sexual harassment and misconduct claims. Many claim Google has treated female workers inequitably for years, and others are outraged that a Google executive was awarded a $90 million exit package even after the company concluded that a harassment claim against him was credible.
Halloween can be a spooky time of year; however, managing employee conduct around this fun and frightful holiday does not have to give your human resources department the chills. When enacting your policies and procedures regarding the Halloween holiday, the most important step you can take is to be proactive.