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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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There may be many reasons em­­ployees end up earning different salaries for similar work. Pay disparities often grow gradually, over time. That can mean big trouble under the Equal Pay Act. If you aren’t tracking all pay changes and noting the reason, you may end up liable for sex discrimination.

The Equal Pay Act (EPA) requires that men and women in the same workplace be given equal pay for substantially similar work. If you discover a pay disparity between substantially similar male and female employees, fix the problem right away to let women catch up. Don’t use pay policies as an excuse to slow the process.

Q. Our company received a claim for unemployment compensation from one of our former part-time employees. Are part-time employees eligible to receive unemployment benefits?

Never skip a payday. That’s just asking to be sued, as the following case shows.
Q. We are still getting requests from students to work for free. We know we have to pay them minimum wage, but do we have to do more? Do we have to pay benefits or give paid holidays?
The job market is opening up, increasing opportunities for employees to change jobs if they want to. The bad news for employers: The workers most likely to look for new jobs are those that organizations would most like to keep. The secret weapon for retaining valued, high-performing employees with wandering eyes: better benefits.
Nonroster employees of the New York Jets might not work out side by side with Tim Tebow and Mark Sanchez, but they use the same gym—when the team’s not in it.
If you are contemplating changing your compensation structure to reflect today’s lean job market, do so carefully—especially if you suspect you may be overpaying some employees for the work they do. The problem: Older, more experienced workers may be at the top of your pay scales.
When employers offer severance packages, they often ask employees to waive their rights to sue the employer. That’s a smart strategy, but small discrepancies in the agreement’s wording can make the difference between a successful severance package and a call from the EEOC.
Health care costs are expected to grow at about 7.5% next year, reflecting the sluggish economy and employer efforts to hold down expenses, says a new study by Pricewaterhouse-Coopers.
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