Q. Are there any questions we cannot or should not ask a reference when screening applicants? —B.B., Louisiana
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Q. We’re a small business with eight employees. One employee frequently takes off for six to eight weeks with medical problems. She’s done this each year for the past three years. It’s a huge burden because very few people have her training, so we can’t hire a temp. How long do we have to allow her to disappear for months at a time? —M.S., Ohio
Employees who are infertile may qualify for reasonable accommodations under the ADA. That's true even if the underlying medical condition that caused the infertility has been cured. As a result, you may be required to give infertile employees time off for fertility treatments and even adoption planning ...
The number of employees who work from home at least one day per month increased 63 percent between 2004 and 2006, says a new WorldatWork study. But as telework’s popularity grows, so do legal concerns for employers ...
The Florida’s Private-Sector Whistleblower Act protects employees who report alleged wrongdoing to their employers. Ignoring the complaint—or worse, threatening discipline, job loss or anything else that could be viewed as retaliation—will land you in court in no time flat ...
Q. We're a surveying company and often use temporary workers on big projects. We recently rejected a candidate sent by the temp agency. Now, the candidate is threatening to sue, saying we discriminated against her because of her accent. Can she sue us even though she was employed by the temp agency, not by us? —M.L., Maryland
Q. As a large retail business, we employ several “demo staffers” who present products to shoppers in the hope they'll buy them. Recently, given economic pressures, we've had to put increasing pressure on our demo staff to increase sales up to 200 percent. If a demo staffer doesn't meet the new goal, can we terminate her? Do these workers have legal recourse should they be fired? —T.P., California
Q. Our company employs fewer than 50 people, so we don't have to comply with FMLA. Do we need to mention that fact in our employee handbook? —G.R., Michigan
Q. One of our employees has been out on disability leave for almost 16 months. He says he wants to return to work, but only if we give him a supervisory position without a lot of strenuous activity. We have no such position available. We've offered him other positions, but he's refused them all. Can we legally terminate him? —L.B., North Carolina
Q. We require, as a condition of employment, that our employees agree to resolve all disputes by binding arbitration, rather than going to court. One of my friends said a lot of the government agencies don't like those kinds of arbitration policies and one agency even decided that they were illegal. I know lots of employers have binding arbitration, so I don't think that could be right, but thought I better check. —S.T.