Employment Law

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After weeks of wrangling, the House of Representatives and the Senate on Dec. 23, 2011 agreed to extend a 2 percentage point payroll tax cut for two months to buy time for talks on a full-year renewal. President Obama immediately signed the bill into law. The vote removes employer uncertainly about how to handle payroll withholding starting Jan. 1, 2012.
With more veterans returning from active duty in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, remember: Under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, service members are entitled to reinstatement as if they never left for deployment.
At-will employment is the rule in most states, meaning you can terminate employees at any time and for any reason (except an unlawful one), as long as you don’t promise them a job for a specific length of time. Don't risk their at-will status by using the term “permanent” or “probationary period.”
Q. We’re considering using an online pre-employment screening test designed to determine if an applicant is the right fit for our business. Are there any risks associated with using such tests?
The NLRB has issued three significant decisions that affect the relationship between unions, em­­ployers and employees. These include new rules for determining what is an appropriate bargaining unit and when employees can vote a union out as their representative. Together, they add to the NLRB’s recent record of ruling in favor of unions and against employers.
Q. How do I know when to classify a worker as a contractor or a true employee?
Little booths and big customers may not be the best combination. A 290-pound man is suing the Columbus-based White Castle burger chain, claiming he suffered embarrassment and injured his knee when he tried to squeeze into a booth in a restaurant in New York.
Q. What is the new National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) rule regarding notifying employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act?
Don’t give in to the temptation to save money by writing your own arbitration agreements or using a standard template available from many arbitration services. Instead, have your attorney review your organization’s unique needs and draft a custom agreement.
When the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) cited the owners of a Caldwell County gran­ite mine for 103 safety violations, the company didn’t contest the resulting fines. But they didn’t pay them either, and now the MSHA is suing to collect.