The Supreme Court has ruled that women whose retirement benefits are worth less because they weren’t credited for time spent on maternity leave before enactment of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act can’t sue to recover lost funds. The decision in AT&T Corp. v. Hulteen generally followed the reasoning the High Court used in its landmark Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber ruling: If a policy was legal at the time alleged discrimination occurred, employees can’t challenge it retroactively.
Uncle Sam often examines deductible travel expenses through a magnifying glass. So both employers and employees must meet strict recordkeeping rules—or face the consequences. Fortunately, you can take a shortcut. Use IRS-approved per-diem allowance rates in lieu of accounting for every bagel and cab ride from an employee’s business trip.
Employees do the darnedest things, and HR and managers frequently wind up trying to undo the damage. Our newest webinar — Today’s Most Bizarre Recent Workplace Cases: How to Prevent Outrageous Workplace Behavior (May 28) — tells tales of outrageous employee behavior … and the lawsuit against the employer that followed. Here’s our take on the topic, with cases pulled from the pages of our HR Specialist newsletters.
Recently, workplace expert Tory Johnson was interviewed about how women can succeed in a challenging job market (smartblogs.com/workforce). She talked about what she believes is the biggest challenge for female managers, but the advice could easily apply to anyone. Here’s what she said:
Admin Brooke Wiseman knew that administrative professionals in her company weren’t being used in the most productive ways. For example, some shared the same title but had wide variations in duties. Her goal was to bring more value to the company by turbocharging the partnerships between executives and their assistants. Here’s how she did it.
For the past 16 years, complying with the Family and Medical Leave Act has been complex, but at least the law (once you figured it out) stayed the same. On Jan. 16, that all changed. To help employers, attorneys, HR professionals and managers around the country better understand how to implement the new FMLA regulations, BusinessManagementDaily.com has issued a how-to special report: FMLA Intermittent Leave: 5 guidelines on managing intermittent leave and curbing leave abuse under the new FMLA regulations.
With Administrative Professionals Day approaching tomorrow (April 22), the editors of BusinessManagementDaily.com asked administrative assistants to weigh in with the craziest things their bosses had ever asked them to do. Here are some of the best examples of “other duties as assigned.”
Issue: Poorly written layoff letters can open your organization to legal action. No matter how you write layoff letters, they are bound to anger employees, especially if the employees don’t see it coming. Don’t give irate employees legal ammunition by writing misleading, inaccurate or insensitive layoff letters. Action: Create notices that explain the layoff in the most straightforward, respectful manner possible. To avoid legal action, think of layoff letters as informal legal documents that include the following:
More pink slips are on the horizon. According to outplacement firm Challenger Gray & Christmas, 1 million more job cuts are likely in 2009. But, there’s a silver lining among all the dark clouds of this recession, says the firm’s chief executive, John Challenger, and it’s this: Layoffs can be good news, in a strange way.
Q. What kinds of information and documents should we keep in our personnel files?
A. You should include pretty much all documentation concerning an employee’s history with the company—attendance, pay history, job history, discipline and evaluations—except medical documentation and, perhaps, protected activity information concerning matters such as discrimination and harassment complaints.