COMBATING THE HIGH COST OF ABSENTEEISM

Unscheduled absenteeism costs American businesses billions of dollars every year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). There are myriad potential costs to take into account, including:  Overtime; Paid Sick Days; Use of temporary or “relief/reserve” employees; Reduced productivity; Poor quality of goods or services resulting from replacement workers’ inexperience or fatigue; Administrative costs associated …

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GOVERNOR CUOMO SIGNS BILL ELIMINATING CERTAIN PORTIONS OF THE WAGE THEFT PREVENTION ACT

Notice of Pay Rate On December 29, 2014, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed a bill eliminating the requirement that before February 1 of each year, employers notify and receive written acknowledgement from every worker about their rate of pay, allowances, pay day, etc.  Legislative leaders and the Governor have agreed to make this change effective …

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NEW YORK MINIMUM WAGE SET TO RISE ON JANUARY 1, 2015

As we head into the end of 2014, New York State employers should begin preparing for the minimum wage hike. On December 31, 2014, the statewide hourly minimum wage for non-exempt (i.e., hourly) employees will rise from $8.00 to $8.75 (and then to $9.00 on December 31, 2015).  Just as significantly, the minimum weekly salary for certain exempt employees …

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TEN TIPS IN DEALING WITH THE FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE ACT

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) can be one of the most daunting employment laws an employer has to deal with.  There are very specific rules and procedures that must be followed to ensure that both employee and employer are protected.  Here are ten tips to assist you in complying with your obligations under the law: …

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PENALTIES FOR IMMIGRATION NONCOMPLIANCE

For companies still wondering whether spending a little now to implement a solid immigration compliance program is a sound investment, some recent immigration-related penalties provide compelling reasons to invest in training and compliance. Remember—all employers have immigration-related compliance obligations regardless of whether they employ any foreign nationals.  Even simply falling short on one’s obligation to verify …

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THE EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION’S BROAD THIRD-PARTY SUBPOENA POWER

An employer’s dealings with the EEOC typically stem from an administrative charge filed by a current or former employee. However, businesses are sometimes hit with an unexpected, nettlesome, and costly surprise: an EEOC third-party subpoena. The EEOC has the power to issue subpoenas to third parties, meaning it can order them to produce documents and …

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OSHA AND NLRB TEAM UP AGAINST EMPLOYERS

Earlier this year, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) decided that it will refer all untimely retaliation claims to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to determine whether an employer engaged in an unfair labor practice (ULP) under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). Background In March 2014, David Michaels, OSHA’s Assistant Secretary of Labor, signed a memorandum stating the agency …

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TOP TIPS IN HANDLING SUBSTANCE ABUSE IN THE WORKPLACE

There is clear agreement that substance abuse—whether it’s alcohol, prescription drugs, or illegal drugs—adversely affects employers and their businesses. Some estimate the loss of productivity for U.S. employers has been as much as $200 billion annually! General concerns for safety at work, injuries on the job, theft, loss of employee morale, and costs related to absenteeism, recruiting, training, …

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CAN AN EMPLOYER BE RESPONSIBLE FOR HARASSMENT BY A CUSTOMER/CLIENT?

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other laws prohibiting harassment on the basis of protected categories extend to harassment by customers, and employers can be held liable if they don’t take action to put a stop to it. That point was made clear by the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in …

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NLRB SETS PUBLIC MEETING ON PROPOSED CHANGES TO UNION ELECTION RULES

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has set two days of meetings in April to hear opinions on proposed changes to rules governing union representation elections. The NLRB will meet for April 10-11 at its headquarters in Washington, D.C., to allow members of the public to present their views on what pro-business interests have labeled …

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