Susan Lessack

Q. May I dock an employee’s pay as a penalty for disciplinary infractions?

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Q. Because our office is in a residential area, mail isn’t delivered until the late afternoon. One of our secretaries volunteered to pick up the mail at the post office on her way to work every day. It’s not too far out of the way, but it does change her regular route to work. Are we required to reimburse her for the additional time, as well as mileage?

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Q. Are active duty military and veterans considered a protected class?

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Q. An employee recently complained about re­ceiving inappropriate email messages and links to porno­graphic websites from some of her co-workers. We would like to review the messages to figure out exactly how large a problem we face. Can we do this?

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Q. Is an employee who injures himself at a ­company-sponsored picnic eligible for workers’ ­compensation?

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Q. I received a call from an employee I recently fired, letting me know she listed me as a reference. She was terminated because of performance. Can I disclose that information to a potential employer?

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Q. Our employee handbook states, “If you do not return a piece of property we will withhold from your final paycheck the cost of replacing that piece of property.” One of our employees recently quit on the spot. My boss wants to almost double the actual replacement cost of the item. Can we do this?

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Q. If our organization offers voluntary employee training, which takes place during lunch, do we have to pay employees for the time spent attending training?

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Q. Recently, one of our delivery drivers was hurt at home and is now unable to drive. Should we offer alternative employment?

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Q. There have been a few reports from co-workers about a new employee smelling of alcohol, although he shows no sign of intoxication. Can we ask him if he has been drinking on duty?

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