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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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A few years back, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that chicken processing employees had to be paid for time spent putting on and taking off special protective clothing before and after their shifts. Since then, numerous lawsuits have challenged “donning and doffing” pay practices. Now, the 8th Circuit Court of Ap­peals has provided a bit of clarification.

President Obama on Dec. 4 voiced his support for a Senate bill that would increase the national minimum wage to $10.10 per hour. House Republicans oppose it, so the measure is unlikely to pass between now and the 2014 elections. However, half of Americans already live in states and locales with higher minimum wages than the federal rate of $7.25.

Q. We operate several restaurants and have issues with customers who walk out without paying. We expect our ­servers to help prevent this and want to implement a program that makes servers responsible for these losses. May we deduct the amount of the shortage from employees’ gratuities instead of their wages?
Workers have reason for holiday cheer this season as employers continue to give back to employees with year-end perks. Here’s how employers are recognizing employees this holiday season:
Here’s a reminder that Minnesota law prohibits employers from forcing waiters in traditional restaurant environments to share their tips with bartenders and other support staff. It doesn’t matter what you call those who play a supporting role, either.

Mattel employees who want to attend their children’s soccer games and school plays can take 16 hours of paid time off each year to do it. Full-time employees may participate in their children’s school activities or volunteer at school events that don’t involve their own kids.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has announced a settlement with a masonry contractor working on New York City’s St. Mark’s senior housing project in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn.
More than half of Americans are insured through an employer-provided health plan, according to a Kaiser Health Tracking Poll.
Paid time off—vacation, sick and personal days all in one plan—is now the most common form of paid leave.
A group of more than 30 employers—including Boeing, Chevron, GE, Target and Wells Fargo—have formed the national Employers Cen­­ter of Excellence Network to negotiate lower prices so they can offer hip and knee replacement surgeries at no cost to employees.
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