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EMPLOYMENT LAW UPDATE

6 things to do when remote workers want to move to another state

By Mike O’Brien Is it a problem for a law office suddenly to have an unplanned, unexpected, and perhaps undesired branch office when an employee moves to another state? Yes! The United States has a national government, state governments, and local governments. They each have powers over employers and make laws that typically apply to and protect people subject to the various jurisdictions. And these laws are not always uniform! There is a lot of variation in state laws related to COVID-19, masks, vaccines, etc. Arizona law requires paid leave, Utah does not. Montana law prohibits age discrimination against any age, not just 40 and above, and also prohibits termination without “good cause” as defined by the statute. Utah does not do either of these things. Nevada law requires daily… . . . read more

TERMINATION

To avoid a messy workplace theft investigation, can we just fire our prime suspect?

Question: Several years ago, when one of our employees was stealing from other employees’ purses and desks, we called the police. The process—calling the police, alerting our insurance carrier and interviewing multiple employees to show fairness so we wouldn’t get sued for wrongful termination when we fired the one employee—tore apart our office. Some of our best employees couldn’t believe we didn’t trust them. We tried to explain we had wanted to be fair, and that if we only singled certain employees, we’d stigmatize them forever, but two of our best, long-term employees were so angry they quit within a few months. Once again, we have a problem. Several employees have reported missing small things from their desks. These items appear to have been taken at night. Since everyone has… . . . read more

Employment Law Update

Supreme Court ruling extends workplace protections to LGBTQ workers

By Mike O’Brien bio SEXUAL ORIENTATION AND TRANSGENDER STATUS NOW ARE PROTECTED CLASSES NATIONALLY: Federal civil rights law protects gay, lesbian, and transgender employees, the United States Supreme Court announced June 15 in a landmark ruling. The historic decision will extend workplace anti-discrimination and anti-harassment protections to about 8 million LGBTQ workers nationwide. The ruling also vindicates a position long taken by the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). It is a defeat, however, for the Trump administration, which opposed the EEOC. President Trump instructed the Department of Justice to argue that the provision of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act that bars discrimination based on sex did not extend to claims of gender identity and sexual orientation bias. This led to the odd circumstance where two parts of the same government argued for opposite… . . . read more

BLOG

Immigration alert, social media, salary threshold, minimum wage, trafficking and more

By Mike O’Brien  bio
The Social Security Administration (SSA) just announced its plan to mail a second set of…


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BLOG

Salary threshold increases getting review

By Mike O’Brien  bio
On Aug. 12, 2019, the U.S. Department of Labor sent its proposed salary threshold rule change to…


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HIRING & FIRING

Hiring and firing risk factor: careless words

When jobs are in short supply, “people are desperate to find work and desperate to keep the work they have.” They’re willing to…


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HIRING AND FIRING

Always ask these 7 questions before you fire a staffer

They are the seven-question solution. They have become the standard for determining whether a firing is justified…


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MANAGING THE OFFICE

5 steps to building a law office staff that cares

What’s the climate like in your organization? Is it productive? Is it inclusive or exclusive? Do your employees enjoy coming to…


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MANAGING STAFF

How to deliver bad news to 3 kinds of underperforming employees

The talk of management isn’t easy. Here are three especially difficult conversations to be prepared for…


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TERMINATION

7 steps to safely terminating an employee

Properly terminating an employee to minimize the chances of repercussions starts with gathering all the facts and considering all the factors, says…


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