Compensation and Benefits

Compensation and benefits topics – whether it’s minimum wage, workers’ compensation laws, or employee pay – if properly handled, can help you retain workers and recruit new ones.

Use our advice to craft independent contractor agreements that keep independent contractors – and your bosses – happy.

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Q. Is it legal for us to strongly encourage our employees to have money withheld from their paychecks to support a charity drive, like the United Way? —L.M., Texas

The New Jersey Department of Labor recently announced the 2007 benefit levels for unemployment insurance, disability insurance and workers' compensation. Under New Jersey law, those benefits are adjusted annually, based on fluctuations in the statewide average weekly wage ...

The U.S. Labor Department revamped the FLSA regulations in 2004 to help employers and employees understand the rules better. But, so far, the HR world has only seen more overtime lawsuits, not less ...

Q. Can our company require an independent contractor to wear a specific uniform? And can we stipulate that the contractor buy the uniform through us? —A.C., California

Q. I run a small advertising office. A college student has asked to join our staff for the summer. She proposed to work every day for a couple months at no cost. It would be great to get some free help. Is there anything wrong with hiring her? —G.I., Maryland

This coming holiday season, the state of Florida has a gift planned for workers. Effective Jan. 1, 2007, the Florida minimum wage is set to increase in accordance with the state constitutional amendment approved by voters in 2004 ...

Even though some provisions of the new landmark pension law don't take effect for 16 months, HR professionals need to start educating themselves immediately. The changes amount to the most sweeping reforms of pension law in more than 30 years ...

Both federal and New Jersey state statutes hold perpetrators criminally liable for the possession or viewing of child pornography. But a recent New Jersey Appellate Division decision opens the door for employers to be held civilly liable for failing to prevent these acts ...

Q. We're an at-will employer. Is there a law (or advisable benchmark) regarding how long we can hire temporary staff before they must be either hired on a permanent basis or released? —D.A., Michigan

Pennsylvania employers that don't adequately protect their employees from dangers associated with their jobs, take note. If your employees suffer post-traumatic stress disorder or depression following an armed robbery or other unusual violent act, they may be eligible for workers' compensation for the "psychic injury" ...

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