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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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Q. A recently terminated employee demanded immediate payment of his wages and asked us to directly deposit the check into his bank account. I know that Minnesota law requires us to pay the wages through the employee’s last day of employment within 24 hours of his demand. While this employee was normally paid through direct deposit, we cannot coordinate a direct deposit within 24 hours. Can we just send the employee a check by mail?
It used to be that before an em­­ployee or former employee could get into federal court with a ­benefits-denial case, he had to show that he was a “plan participant.” But following a recent 9th Circuit decision, merely claiming to have been a plan participant is enough.
If you offer extra off-duty training to your hourly employees, pay extra attention to the rules that explain when those hours must be “paid time.” In most cases it will, but the Fair Labor Standards Act does give you a four-step ladder to climb to a pay exemption.
The U.S. Supreme Court will decide the fate of health care reform before the end of June. No matter how the court rules on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, its decision will affect employer-provided benefits for years to come.

CNO Financial Group has opened a medical clinic on its Carmel, Ind., campus for employees and their families. OurClinic@Carmel offers primary, preventive and urgent medical care 40 hours a week, Monday through Friday.

Ernst & Young on Jan. 1 began reimbursing its lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees for the additional federal and state taxes they pay on same-sex domestic partners’ medical benefits. The New York-based accounting giant is the first Big Four firm to offer the tax offset.

After a recession-induced lull, health savings accounts (HSAs) regained popularity in 2011, and now total $12.4 billion in assets, spread over 8.4 million accounts.
CFOs aren’t the only ones with their eyes on the bottom line when it comes to health and wellness. Your organization’s workers also can—and want to—save money by participating in employer-sponsored programs.
Most private companies in the U.S. now offer long-term incentives (61%) in addition to short-term incentives (95%), according to a new study on pay practices by the nonprofit organization WorldatWork and Vivient Consulting.
After realizing how much it spent training new ­employees, SIB Development and Consulting in Charleston, S.C., decided to launch a novel retention bonus: If you keep your job for five years, you get $50,000.
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