Joseph Beachboard

Q. My daughter and I are the sole owners of our business. Are we required to obtain workers’ compensation coverage even though we have no employees?

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Q. One of my employees was recently injured in a nonwork-related accident. If this employee returns to work and requires an accommodation to perform his duties, can allowing him to telecommute be considered reasonable accommodation?

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Q. I recently fired one of my employees, but today another company called me, stating that the former employee marked me down on a job application as an employment reference. Can I tell the prospective em­­ployer about how terrible an employee this person was?

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Q. I believe I should be able to refuse employment to any prospective employee with a record of criminal conviction. Can I institute a blanket policy that bars employment to applicants with criminal records? Also, what can I ask applicants about their criminal records?

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Q. I just fired one of my employees for his constant tardiness. Because it is currently in the middle of a pay period, the employee has some wages due to him. When must I pay him these wages, and am I even required to pay him? I mean, I did fire him for being a terrible employee.

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Q. One of my workers brought a backpack into work today that I have reason to believe contains illegal substances. The worker stored the bag in his company-provided locker. Can I search his belongings?

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Q. One of my employees recently made a post on Face­­book expressing his dissatisfaction with his job. In the post, he talked about being paid too little for the amount of work he performs, and that the whole office needs renovating, claiming, “rats don’t even want to work there.” Can I fire him for this, or at least discipline him?

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Q. A number of my employees have stated that they will not be able to vote in the upcoming statewide election because their local polling centers are only open during these employees’ work hours. Should I give them some time off during the day to vote?

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Q. What questions am I prohibited from asking during employment interviews?

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Q. Our business has been booming and we are short-staffed. We have brought on a number of temporary workers from a staffing agency. Is it acceptable to have the temporary workers use the same punch clock system that our regular employees use?

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