The HR Specialist

Q. My company implemented an employment arbitration program several years ago, applicable to employees in all states, including Georgia. I recently have been told that Georgia law has special employment arbitration rules requiring that both the employer and the employee initial arbitration agreements in order to be enforceable. Is this true? We don’t do this …

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For the first time, the FMLA has been amended—a brand new law grants family members of military  men and women special FMLA leave rights.

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Discrimination lawsuits can take years to resolve, and memories fade over time. That’s one reason to take careful notes during your initial investigation. Be sure to record exactly what the alleged victim says happened. You don’t want to be blindsided later …

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The ADA applies to employers with 15 or more employees. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) covers employers with 20 or more employees. Pretty clear, right? But whom you count is crucial, especially if your head count is right on the cusp of the ADA or ADEA threshold …

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 Women accounted for half of new hires at an Iowa meatpacker until the company instituted a new pre-hire lifting test. Then the percentage of women fell to 15%. Fifty-two female applicants who failed the test and weren’t hired sued for discrimination and won $3.3 million …

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Q. Under what circumstances can we deny reinstatement to an employee who has been out on leave under the California Family Rights Act? …

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Q. I recently heard that Congress was considering legislation that would bar employers from using individuals’ genetic information when making hiring, firing, job placement or promotion decisions. Is there a state statute addressing this matter? …

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California employees who claim their jobs have caused them psychiatric problems have to meet a higher standard than they would for physical injuries. They must prove that “actual events of employment” were the “predominant” cause. Now a California appeals court has clarified that workers’ comp does not cover psychological or psychiatric injuries that an employee herself caused …

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Q. Are there new requirements regarding the type of information that should be included on an employee’s pay statement? …

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Employees who are alcoholics may be disabled under the ADA and are entitled to reasonable accommodations for treatment. That treatment also qualifies the employee for FMLA leave. But it doesn’t mean you have to tolerate or forgive unauthorized absences to indulge an alcoholic binge …

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