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CORONAVIRUS

4 strategies for your law office to use now to protect your employees from coronavirus

With the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), your law office needs a plan to protect employees from exposure. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control) recommends these strategies: Actively encourage sick employees to stay home: Employees who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are recommended to stay home and not come to work until they are free of fever (100.4° F [37.8° C] or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. cough suppressants). Employees should notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick. Ensure that your sick leave policies are flexible and consistent with public health guidance and that employees are aware of these policies. Talk with companies that… . . . read more

BLOG

Don’t cast out a truth teller

By Lynne Curry bio “Morgan” was the one person who took issue with the CEO’s presentation of his new initiative. Before she voiced her concerns, the 12 other managers around the conference table had nodded appreciatively when the CEO made each of his points. Several other managers secretly shared Morgan’s doubts, but no one came to her aid when the CEO looked irritated. Six weeks later, it surprised none of the other managers to receive an email notifying them that Morgan had left the company. It did worry these managers when the CEO’s initiative failed. Nevertheless, the remaining managers knew better than to voice their apprehensions when the CEO and his hand-picked CFO put a good face on the situation. In organizations such as the above, the corporate immune system… . . . read more

ASK THE EXPERT

Must employee notify our office of DUI?

QUESTION If one of our employees gets a DUI, do they have to notify us? ANSWER It depends. EXPLANATION There are at least four factors affecting whether the employee would have to come forward and tell you about the DUI? Your HR policies: What, if anything, do your current policies say about whether employees must notify you of their DUIs? Conviction or arrest? If the employee was arrested but not convicted, he/she may be able to prove innocence (or may have already done so if the charges were dropped or the employee was acquitted). A conviction, on the other hand, would more likely affect job performance and thus require disclosure. Impact on job performance: Notification is required if the DUI has an actual or potential impact on job performance, such… . . . read more

Employment Law Update

Age bias legislation and defamation claims

By Mike O’Brien bio Here is my periodic update prepared for interested HR professionals trying to deal with the complex American employment laws. House passes age bias legislation: The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act (POWADA). The bill, passed in January, would allow an older worker to sue for job discrimination even if age was not the sole cause of adverse employment action, but simply one motivating factor in the decision. Under the ADEA and a 2009 Supreme Court decision (Gross v. FBL Financial Services, Inc.), an aggrieved worker must show that “but for” age (40 and over), the challenged employment decision would not have been made. POWADA would substantially lower that standard to proof that age was a “motivating factor.” In addition,… . . . read more

EMPLOYMENT LAW UPDATE

New overtime rule now in effect

By Mike O’Brien bio Jan. 1, 2020 was the deadline to comply with new FLSA overtime rule. At the end of September the Department of Labor issued its long-awaited final rule updating the salary level test for white-collar overtime exemptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Under the new rule, the minimum salary level for exemption is raised from $455 a week to $684 a week, or $35,568 annually. The change marks the first increase in the minimum salary level to take effect in more than 15 years. It is expected to bring overtime eligibility to over a million employees who are ineligible under the current threshold. Although the DOL released a final rule raising the salary level in 2016, the rule was blocked by a federal district court and… . . . read more

REVENGE IN THE WORKPLACE

She almost lost her job to jealous sabotage

By Lynne Curry bio Through no fault of her own, “Loni” almost lost her job. When she called me requesting coaching, she told me told me she’d been with her company for 11 months. For the first nine, she’d been on the fast-track to a senior management position. Two months ago, everything changed. Last Friday morning, her CEO had told her to “pull it together or you’re out.” She said several recent disasters had led her company’s CEO to lose confidence in her. Loni said she’d mislaid crucial documents, had apparently sent unprofessional emails that she hadn’t remembered writing and had submitted shoddy work on key assignments because her rough first drafts had been transmitted rather than her polished final drafts. Since her dad had dementia, Loni worried she might… . . . read more

MANAGING STAFF

How to delegate better

Boost staff performance by communicating more clearly
Not pleased with what staff are doing? It may not be their fault. Look at the directions they are…


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MANAGING THE OFFICE

The importance of recognizing your employees’ hard work

Happy Administrative Professionals Week! What have you got planned to acknowledge your hard-working support staff? If you’ve decided to do nothing this year, you may want to…


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RISK MANAGEMENT

4 bad financial habits that may increase your policy premiums and your malpractice risk

Ineffective billing and collections practices affect more than the bottom line. They ultimately may determine what the firm has to…


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BLOG

3-point retention strategy

By Julie Ellison  bio
Great law offices are built with great people. In today’s competitive employment market, it’s hard enough…


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