The HR Specialist

Q. When we win contracts, we recognize employees with cash awards. But these awards may be given to only the select few employees involved. Is this legally OK? —G.J., Alabama

{ 0 comments }

Q. A group of our employees met during their break to have group prayer. A supervisor complained to our president, who instructed that we should notify employees that they can’t pray on break time. Nor can they pray during lunch unless they leave the building. Some employees are upset. Is this policy legal? —M.S., California

{ 0 comments }

Q. Is it mandatory for a nonexempt employee to take at least a 20-minute meal break after working a certain number of hours? —M.M., Illinois

{ 0 comments }

Q. Awhile back you suggested that we provide transportation home for employees who suffer an illness that could be work-related. Would that apply to company parties for which employees’ attendance is voluntary? —C.K, Illinois

{ 0 comments }

Q. We give employees the choice of using two 10-minute breaks each day or combining them into one 20-minute lunch break. The employees are required to punch out and in for these breaks. Now, we have a policy that docks employees 15 minutes if they’re four or more minutes late returning from a break. Is this legal? —J.B., Texas

{ 0 comments }

Q. One of our managers was talking on his company cell phone when he struck and injured a pedestrian. Can the pedestrian sue the company? —P.L., Washington

{ 0 comments }

Q. Is it OK not to pay hourly employees if we have to send them home because our computer system went down for the day? —J.B., Massachusetts

{ 0 comments }

Q. If an exempt employee has no more paid leave left, can he take a couple hours off without pay? We’d just manually adjust his salary to reflect this. —A.D., Pennsylvania

{ 0 comments }

Q. We have a few employees who started working for us more than 20 years ago, before the I-9 rules took effect. I don’t have an I-9 on file for these folks. Should I? —S.I., New York

{ 0 comments }

Q. We have a “stinky employee” problem. How do I go about telling this person that she has a horrible smell and it’s now affecting some of my other staff? —S.H., Washington

{ 0 comments }