The HR Specialist

Issue: Courts continue to ambush employers’ attempts to tighten leave-notification procedures. Risk: Following a policy that violates federal law. Action: Route employee-absence calls to one person (possibly you) who …

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If you’re ever hauled into court to testify in a case against our organization, what you say, and how you say it, can sink our defense or make our arguments float. And don’t forget: More than your credibility as a manager may be on trial; you could be held personally liable for your actions, if [...]

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Before firing anyone, ask yourself the following seven questions. If you answer “Yes” to any, your risk of sparking a lawsuit rises greatly, so contact your HR department before proceeding with a termination. Question Yes No 1. Is the employee over age 40? 2. Is the employee disabled in any way? 3. Has the employee [...]

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Issue: Firing someone who threatens a co-worker may be worth the risk of being sued for wrongful discharge. Risk: Wrongful-discharge claims versus serious injury or even death: Which would be …

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Issue: Make sure you’re in the right before punishing people for ‘misusing’ FMLA leave. Risk: Tons in legal fees defending an arbitrary decision. Action: Make it clear to employees …

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Good news: You no longer have to notify employees suspected of workplace misconduct that they are targets of third-party investigations. Congress recently altered the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) …

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Issue: The phrases you use to offer your ideas can sabotage your credibility with other people. Benefit: Nobody takes you seriously when you don’t speak confidently. Action: Take the …

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Issue: Court ruling adds uncertainty to when you must pay hourly employees for work performed on their breaks. Risk: Liability for back and overtime pay. Action: Urge managers to …

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Issue: More for-profit organizations are using “volunteers” to help in their normal course of business, and they’re taking a legal gamble. Risk: Back pay and FLSA claims. Action: Use …

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A new OfficeTeam survey asked employees what one thing would give them more job satisfaction. The runaway winner: more schedule flexibility (33 percent). The lesson: If possible, stagger schedules to …

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