Susan Lessack

Imagine this nightmare scenario: You’ve contracted with a vendor to enter personnel data into a new computer system, including employees’ Social Security numbers, addresses, names of dependents, health records and bank account routing numbers. Then the vendor notifies you that employee data was somehow stolen or lost. What do you do?

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Q. When an employee gets married, do we need a new W-4 to show her new name? What about a new I-9?

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Q. One of our employees is out on workers’ comp. Our contract says “no sick time will be lost or deducted” while employees are out on workers’ comp. But now he wants to know if he continues to accrue sick time and holiday pay while not working. Does he?

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Q. We have some employees who are earning the maximum salary for their job classifications. Can we cut their pay if we feel they’re overpaid?

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Q. We suspected an employee was using drugs, so we sent him to be tested. We told him he couldn’t work until the test came back in two days. The results were negative. Do we owe him wages for those two days?

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Q. We have an employee who is going on eight weeks’ leave for a qualifying serious health condition. She isn’t requesting to use FMLA leave because she has enough paid sick leave. Can employees choose not to use FMLA leave even though they qualify?

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Q. We are planning to furlough employees temporarily. If we do rolling furloughs, can employees get unemployment comp to cover some of their time off?

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Q. Can you please clarify if and when we can offer comp time to our employees? What’s the difference between comp time and flextime?

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Q. Our Internet policy says that if we find employees accessing pornographic web sites, they’ll receive a three-day suspension without pay and a mandatory referral to an EAP counselor. Can we require this?

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Q. Some of our admin assistants are good employees, but they’re constantly late. What can we do to get them to come to work on time?

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