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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An IRS ruling may change a long-standing practice in the restaurant industry when it takes effect Jan. 1, 2014. Gratuities that restaurants impose on large groups will no longer be considered tips after that date. Instead, restaurants must count them as wages.
If you offer severance packages to terminated employees, don’t assume they’ll only settle for a lump sum of cash. With the economy still recovering and uncertainty simmering over health care reform implementation, employees are choosing less severance pay and more benefits.
Q. Does California’s reporting-time pay law apply to workers who report to work but appear to be unable or unfit to work?
Initially, there was talk that employers would be hit with $100-per-day fines for failing to notify employees of their health coverage options by Oct. 1. But the U.S. Small Business Admin­­is­­tra­­tion announced last month that “there is no fine or penalty under the law for failing to provide the notice.”
A critical function of the individual health insurance exchanges is to verify that taxpayers are eligible for advance subsidies. But what’s to stop an em­­ployee who has access to affordable group coverage from gaming the system and getting those subsidies anyway? And how will you know?
Individuals shopping for health insurance in state-based exchanges beginning Oct. 1 are unlikely to encounter skyrocketing premiums, according to a new study by the RAND Corp. However, researchers caution that the cost of policies in the individual market will vary between states.
Q. I know that the laws on overnight travel time are more restrictive in California than under federal law. Does the overnight travel rule under federal law apply in California or does an employer have to pay all travel time even if overnight travel is involved?
By 2016, California may have the nation’s highest minimum wage—$10 per hour—after the state Legislature approved a two-step plan to raise the rate from its current $8 per hour.
Here’s some good news. A court has quickly dismissed a pay disparity lawsuit that a university mathematics professor filed accusing her university of paying male faculty more than their female colleagues.
Annual premiums for employer-provided family health coverage rose a relatively modest 4% this year, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. Family premiums averaged $16,351, with employees paying $4,565 toward the cost of their coverage.
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