The HR Specialist: Minnesota Employment Law

Regis Corp., a national hair salon chain based in the Twin Cities, operates numerous outlets under Regis Salons, Cost Cutters, Supercuts, MasterCuts and other brands. CEO Paul Finkelstein was so concerned about the effects of the proposed Employee Free Choice Act, he decided to be proactive. But his actions may have violated the NLRA.

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Alfonzo Harlin took a job with the New Hope Emergency Food Shelf Network in late 2008. He claimed his new employer told him his health insurance premiums would be about $285 per month. When he found out the premiums would actually be more than $700 per month, he quit. Then he filed for unemployment benefits.

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Disabled employees and their employers often disagree about how to accommodate a disability. Employees sometimes mistakenly believe that they’re entitled to the exact accommodation they prefer. That’s just not true. The fact is, an employer has the right to pick the accommodation it prefers—as long as that accommodation is reasonable.

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You naturally expect people to show up for work on time. But you could get into trouble if you don’t have a written policy saying so. Having written rules makes it more likely employees will understand your expectations.

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You naturally expect people to show up for work on time. But you could get into trouble if you don’t have a written policy saying so. Having written rules makes it more likely employees will understand your expectations.

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When Elizabeth Johnson complained about unsafe working conditions at the Northland Learning Center, a cooperative of alternative schools for children with disabilities in Minnesota’s Iron Range, her boss took no action. Frustrated, Johnson wrote an anonymous letter to the local newspaper outlining the problems. That got the school’s attention …

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When Elizabeth Johnson complained about unsafe working conditions at the Northland Learning Center, a cooperative of alternative schools for children with disabilities in Minnesota’s Iron Range, her boss took no action. Frustrated, Johnson wrote an anonymous letter to the local newspaper outlining the problems. That got the school’s attention …

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Here’s some good news if you use truly independent contractors to perform work. If you have done it right, you don’t have to worry about losing an age discrimination lawsuit. But there’s a caveat: You must make sure you can easily prove your contractor wasn’t really an employee.

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Things started out rocky last November for American Building Maintenance (ABM), a nationwide janitorial services conglomerate, when ICE agents busted it for employing 1,200 undocumented workers. Bad turned to worse in January when the EEOC filed a complaint against ABM, alleging race discrimination against black workers hired last fall through a nonprofit Minneapolis employment agency called Emerge.

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The owner of a Hermantown construction company observed one of his workers in a trench performing his job incorrectly. So to get his attention, he nudged him … with the backhoe. The owner was charged with second-degree assault.

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