Employment Law

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There’s a good chance that what your employees actually do every day has little in common with what’s written in their job descriptions. That’s a problem. Inaccurate or in­­complete job descriptions can cause legal liability for ­­employers, especially if the EEOC or the DOL comes calling.
The federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) doesn’t grant employers any legal recourse if an employee misuses information obtained from company computers, according to a recent Minnesota Federal District Court ruling.
USERRA is not a veteran’s preference law. It merely guarantees that service members can return to work no better or worse off than if they never left.
Here’s an important note in this rocky economy: Employers are free to change many of the terms and conditions of employment for at-will employees, including changing their compensation.
Q. I run a nonunion construction contracting company. We recently received a letter from a union stating that they believe we are paying substandard wages and benefits. The letter asked us to provide any information we might have to show that they are wrong and that we are paying area standard compensation to our people. Does the union have a right to this information?

Q. We have a fleet of company cars. If an employee is at fault in an accident, is it legal for us to require reimbursement for the $500 deductible by reducing his pay over a period of three or four pay cycles?

Charlotte-based Sandoval Con­­struc­­tion was forced to suspend work on a Radisson Hotel in New London, Conn., after the Connecticut De­­part­­ment of Labor charged the company with improperly classifying employees as independent contractors.
North Carolina teachers whose contracts aren’t renewed by their school districts have the right to challenge those decisions in state court. That doesn’t mean they give up their right to sue later in federal court. In effect, teachers get two bites at the apple.
Golden Living Center, a nursing home in Dartmouth, faces an EEOC disability discrimination lawsuit in a case that highlights the difficulty of dealing with mental disabilities under the ADA.
A Texas employer has “won” a case that shows why going without ­workers’ compensation insurance can be expensive even in the best of circumstances. It persuaded a Texas appeals court that an accident—not negligence—caused a nurse’s injury, but only after spending thousands of dollars to defend itself.
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