The HR Specialist: Texas Employment Law

Here’s good news you can use to warn employees against misusing company computers and other technology for their own benefit, to compete or to commit fraud: Employees can’t argue that because they received the equipment to use, they are authorized to access information for purposes unrelated to business.

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There is a fine line between a rational discussion of cultural differences and stereotyping. If you are tempted to educate employees on appropriate workplace behavior, stick with a straightforward description of what behaviors you want to see, not how they differ from other cultural norms.

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Layoff or firing? Probationary or permanent em­­ployee? Using the wrong employment-related terminology with an employee can expose your company to costly lawsuits.

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It just got more complicated to calculate the overtime pay you owe a misclassified employee. In Black v. SettlePou P.C., the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a district court’s ruling concerning the proper methodology for calculating damages when an employee is misclassified as exempt.

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Don’t assume that just because your company is not located in Texas, you can’t be sued in the state. As long as your company employs someone in Texas, that’s enough.

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The state of Texas filed a federal suit against the EEOC, disputing guidance that discourages employers from instituting total bans on hiring convicted felons.

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Earlier, we reported on a case that concluded a high-stress environment isn’t grounds for quitting. It’s back.

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When an employee promises not to sue for age discrimination and accepts money in exchange for that promise, he can revoke that agreement unless it contains some very specific language. But the revocation can only apply to the age discrimination claims, not others. Those remain settled.

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There’s a right way and a wrong way to terminate an employee who isn’t returning from FMLA leave. The right way: Offer every opportunity to ask for an extension—and document that you did so. The wrong way: Just fire her when she doesn’t show up on the day she was supposed to return.

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Judges don’t have much patience with employers that don’t understand their obligations to prevent or stop sexual harassment, including same-sex harassment.

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