Joseph Beachboard

Q. We closed our offices for a day because of a phoned-in bomb threat, and we sent all our employees home. Do we need to pay them for showing up to work that day?

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Q. One of our employees recently went on military caregiver leave to take care of her injured husband. She is also expected to give birth in the coming weeks. Is she entitled to 12 weeks of leave under the FMLA in addition to her 26 weeks of caregiver leave?

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Q. The Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) has been headline news as of late. What is this proposed legislation?

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Q. If an employee works four-hour shifts for seven consecutive days, are we required to pay him time-and-a-half for the seventh day? Is it even lawful for us to require him to work seven consecutive days?

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Q. I recently heard that employers are now required to use a new I-9 form for new employees. Is this true?

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Q. I have an employee who is a volunteer firefighter. Although I believe that volunteering is important, his absences to respond to emergencies have disrupted workplace productivity. Can I replace him because of the problems his service causes?

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Q. How does the new California law making it illegal to send and read text messages while driving affect employers?

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Q. Our company is considering replacing sick leave and vacation benefits with a paid time off (PTO) program. How are these plans treated upon the termination or resignation of an employee?

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Q. One of our employees is experiencing performance-related problems that I believe are attributable to a mental disability. However, the worker has not notified the company that he suffers from an impairment that may be a covered “disability” under state or federal laws. Nor has he asked for any accommodations. Should we nonetheless offer to reasonably accommodate this employee?

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Q. Several recent hires have suffered work-related injuries shortly after beginning their employment. As a result, our workers’ compensation premiums have soared. The company’s CEO, in an effort to avoid this problem, has directed that only “careful” workers be hired in the future. Is this legal?

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