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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In February, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, one of the largest health insurers in the country, announced it had been targeted by a cyber attack that compromised the confidentiality of medical and other personal information maintained on its computer systems. If your organization provides benefits through Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, your employees have probably been affected.

Chances are, less than half of your employees have any idea how your compensation system works. Polled by the nonprofit total-rewards organization WorldatWork, large numbers of HR pros confessed that they have generally done a poor job of explaining how their organizations decide how much to pay people.
SB 1360, passed late in 2014, requires employers to pay employees for recovery periods taken during hot weather.
After a year on the job at Beten­­bough Homes in Lubbock, Texas, employees may accompany execs and colleagues on an all-expense-paid “mission trip.”
A bill before the California General Assembly would require the state’s professional sports teams to give cheerleaders full employment rights, including paying the minimum wage and overtime.
One of President Obama’s attempts to stimulate the economy has been nixed by a federal court.

The government provides fully paid health insurance for members of the military and their families during active duty. Reservists, who aren’t always on active duty, often have insurance coverage through their employers, but that coverage usually isn’t free. It’s a bad idea for reservists to drop that coverage during deployment in favor of free military insurance.

Engineers and others who work for Anadarko Petroleum Corp. in The Woodlands, Texas, are expected to make decisions that will help the company profit and grow. Not all of them are used to that. So when any of its 3,500 employ­­ees expresses a lack of confidence about reaching beyond his or her comfort zone, the organization teaches the would-be decision-maker how.

High-profile lawyer Mark Geragos has set his sights on Web-based real estate company His firm has filed four lawsuits against the company for various federal law violations. In the two most recent suits, Gera­­gos represents a woman who claims she was the victim of age discrimination and another who alleges severe sexual harassment.

St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman talked up the city’s paid leave program at the White House just ahead of Presi­­dent Obama’s State of the Union. Effective Jan. 1, city employees may now take paid leave for the birth or adoption of a child. Birth parents receive four weeks of paid leave.
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