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Mandatory Pamphlet Updates for California Employers

2024-02-20

All California employers are required to distribute six pamphlets to employers, and two of them — Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Workers’ Compensation Rights and Benefits — have mandatory updates for 2024. (Read More)...

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AB 1076 Non-Compete Notice Deadline Is February 14

2024-02-13

California has long taken the position that non-compete agreements are unwelcome in the Golden State — a stance the Legislature has solidified through the recent passage of Senate Bill (SB) 699 and Assembly Bill (AB) 1076. (Read More)...

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What to Know About SECURE 2.0 in 2024

2024-02-13

Getting employees, particularly younger ones, to contribute to a retirement plan has long been a challenge for employers. (Read More)...

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Deepfake Scammers Steal $25 Million From Company: 5 Ways You Can Avoid Being Victim to Latest AI Nightmare

2024-02-09

A group of scammers recently used deepfake technology – now readily available to just about anyone – to trick a finance employee into paying them over $25 million of corporate funds. (Read More)...

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Do Your Workplace Romance Policies Need an Update? 4 Points for Employers to Consider this Valentine’s Day

2024-02-09

Love is in the air on Valentine’s Day – and according to recent research, it has likely found its way to your workplace. (Read More)...

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10 Answers to FAQs About California’s Workplace Violence Prevention Plan Law

2024-02-08

Employers have asked a broad range of questions regarding California’s groundbreaking new law establishing the state’s first general industry workplace violence prevention requirements. (Read More)...

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California Storms 2024: Employer Obligations During Emergency Conditions

2024-02-05

The majority of California has been under atmospheric attack since Sunday, February 4, 2024, with a massive storm making its way from the northern part of the state to the southern — with some areas seeing wind gusts up to 92 miles per hour. (Read More)...

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New Year, New Employment Protections for Cannabis Consumption in California: A 3-Step Guide for Employers

2024-02-01

California employers should take steps now to ensure their policies and practices align with new employment protections for cannabis consumption. (Read More)...

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California Updates Pay Data Reporting Requirements for 2024

2024-02-01

California’s pay data reporting portal opened on Feb. 1, and employers are required to report on three new data points. (Read More)...

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Immigration Fee Hikes Take Effect April 1

2024-01-31

An overhaul of immigration processing fees, including those covering temporary and permanent work visas, will go into effect April 1. (Read More)...

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Post Your Form 300A, Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses

2024-01-31

As happens each year at this time, California employers must start posting their Form 300A, Annual Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses — starting on February 1, 2024, and keeping it posted through April 30, 2024. (Read More)...

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How to Promote Inexperienced Employees into Management Roles

2024-01-30

Katie is a human resource director at a nonprofit organization, and the chief program officer (CPO) has asked her about potentially changing hiring policy by eliminating the “one year of prior managerial experience” requirement when filling internal management positions. (Read More)...

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Did You Know? Workers Can Be Fired for Their Political Affiliation and Activity

2024-01-24

With political campaigns well underway for this year’s elections—and heated discussions, lobbying for candidates and other distracting behavior filling workplace hallways and messaging platforms—private-sector employers may wonder if they’re ever allowed to fire workers for their political affiliation and activities. (Read More)...

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Use Caution When Granting Family Leave Before Employee Is Eligible

2024-01-23

My employee wants to take 12 weeks off for child bonding, but he has worked for us for only 11 months so he’s not eligible for protected family leave time yet. (Read More)...

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What Employers Should Know About California’s Latest Paid Sick Leave Expansion

2024-01-22

In this episode of The Workplace podcast, CalChamber Associate General Counsel Matthew Roberts and CalChamber employment law expert Ellen Savage discuss what employers need to know about the latest expansion of the California Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act (SB 616), also known as the paid sick leave law. (Read More)...

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DOL Issues New Independent Contractor Rule

2024-01-17

On January 10, 2024, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) published a final rule impacting the classification of workers as either independent contractors or employees. (Read More)...

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DOL’s Rule Narrows Scope of Independent Contractor Classification

2024-01-10

The new independent contractor rule from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) could spark an increase in misclassification lawsuits and make businesses less likely to hire gig workers, according to some legal experts. (Read More)...

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CDPH, Cal/OSHA Update COVID-19 Isolation Guidance

2024-01-09

On January 9, 2024, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) updated it’s COVID-19 isolation guidance, (Read More)...

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Workers’ Comp: Pay for Follow-Up Doctor Appointments Not Required

2024-01-04

My employee sustained an injury on the job a few months ago. He is claiming that we have to pay for his doctor and therapy appointments. Is this true? (Read More)...

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Happy New Year, New Laws 2024

2024-01-03

Happy New Year 2024! The new year brings new employment laws, posters and employment notices for employers. (Read More)...

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The Benefit of Employee Handbooks (Plus a Tool to Help Craft One)

2023-12-27

Stated simply, an employee handbook is one of the best ways to avoid misunderstandings; to ensure fair, consistent treatment of employees; and to help protect your business from lawsuits. (Read More)...

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Updated Wage Theft Notice Released

2023-12-19

Federal and California law requires new employees to receive several pamphlets and notices about laws and programs like workers’ compensation, workplace sexual harassment, state disability insurance and paid family leave. (Read More)...

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IRS Boosts Mileage Rate for 2024

2023-12-14

The IRS is raising the standard mileage rate by 1.5 cents per mile for 2024. (Read More)...

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California Paid Sick Leave Changes Guidance Released

2023-12-14

As we rapidly approach January 1 — the date most new employment laws that Governor Newsom signed this year become effective — the one that looms largest for all California employers is the expansion of California’s mandatory paid sick leave law, also known as the Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act. (Read More)...

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EEO-1 Component 1 ‘Failure to File’ Deadline Looms

2023-12-12

You may recall that employers had until December 5, 2023, to submit their EEO-1 Component 1 reports to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Although that deadline has passed, (Read More)...

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2024 Benefit Plan Limits & Thresholds Chart

2023-12-12

Check out this handy chart showing the 2024 benefits plan limits and thresholds for 401(k) plans, adoption assistance, health savings accounts, flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and more. (Read More)...

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Considerations for Back-to-Back Pregnancy, Family Leaves

2023-12-11

My employee of five years gave birth and would like to use California Family Rights Act (CFRA) child bonding time immediately following their pregnancy disability leave (PDL).(Read More)...

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Time Off for Crime Victims: What’s Required Depends on the Crime

2023-12-06

An employee just informed me that they are a crime victim and need time off. What do we have to provide? (Read More)...

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How HR Can Help Employees Use Their FSA Funds

2023-12-06

With the end of the year quickly approaching, HR and benefits leaders have yet one more task to add on to their busy end-of-year checklist: reminding employees about approaching deadlines to use up remaining cash in their health care flexible spending accounts (FSAs). (Read More)...

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Help Remote Workers Become More Engaged

2023-12-05

Legal and employee relations problems can arise when remote workers are less engaged than onsite employees. (Read More)...

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Floating Holiday Policy Determines Payout When Employment Ends

2023-12-04

Our company offers floating holidays to employees. Do these floating holidays have to be paid out at termination? (Read More)...

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Workplace Law Update: 10 Essential Items on Your December To-Do List

2023-12-01

It’s hard to keep up with all the recent changes to labor and employment law, especially since the law always seems to evolve at a rapid pace. (Read More)...

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What Employers Should Know About California’s New Workplace Violence Regulation

2023-11-29

In this episode of The Workplace podcast, CalChamber Associate General Counsel Matthew Roberts sits down with Bianca Saad, CalChamber General Counsel, Labor and Employment, to discuss the requirements of California’s new workplace violence standard, SB 553 (Cortese; D-San Jose). (Read More)...

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How Formal Quarterly Check-Ins Boost Employee Engagement

2023-11-28

In my most recent article, "Developing a Habit of Delivering Frequent but Informal Feedback," I introduced Lindsay, an HR director at an aerospace manufacturing and design firm with 200 employees. (Read More)...

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Late Payment of Wages: Per Worker Penalty Escalates with 2nd Violation

2023-11-27

Our payroll company had some issues a couple of weeks ago, and, as a result, we ended up paying our employees seven days after the regular payday. Do we owe each employee an additional seven days of pay as a penalty for the late payment of their wages? (Read More)...

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2024 HSA, FSA, Retirement Plan Contribution Limits Announced

2023-11-17

In addition to all the new 2024 employment laws, employers should be aware that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released the 2024 annual inflation adjustments for certain health and retirement benefits. (Read More)...

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Exempt Employee Can Be Required to Work Specific Hours

2023-11-15

Our company’s business hours are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. The payroll manager, who is classified as an exempt employee, often arrives at work around 10 a.m. and regularly leaves the office before we close. When this has been discussed with her, she tells us she is exempt and can set her own hours. Is that true? (Read More)...

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Why Departments Hoard Data—and How to Get Them to Share

2023-11-14

In today's data-driven world, organizations rely heavily on comprehensive datasets to make informed decisions, drive innovation and gain a competitive edge. (Read More)...

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EEO-1 Reporting Open Now

2023-11-09

Last week’s Halloween festivities may have overshadowed that EEO-1 Component 1 data collection began October 31 — but the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) reminds employers that they have until December 5, 2023, to meet their filing deadline, which is less than one month away! (Read More)...

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New I-9 Form Must Be Used by All Employers Starting Nov. 1

2023-11-01

Employers are required to use the latest version of Form I-9 beginning today. (Read More)...

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2024 401(k) Contribution Limit Announcement Imminent

2023-11-01

There have been a number of annual limits announced for 2024, from health savings account contributions to the Social Security wage cap, but employers are still waiting for one important figure: the annual 401(k) contribution limit. (Read More)...

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2024 Social Security, CA SDI Taxable Wage Base, Withholding Rates

2023-11-01

Employers should know about two new taxable wage base updates for 2024. The Social Security Administration (SSA) recently announced that, for 2024 (Read More)...

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New Laws California Employers Will Need to Follow in 2024

2023-10-31

In this episode of The Workplace podcast, CalChamber Associate General Counsel Matthew Roberts and CalChamber Policy Advocate Ashley Hoffman review several new laws that will affect California employers in 2024 (Read More)...

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White House Issues Sweeping AI Executive Order: 10 Things Employers Need to Know

2023-10-30

The executive order on artificial intelligence issued by the White House today is the federal government’s most ambitious attempt to date to corral this burgeoning technology – and contains numerous items of interest for employers. (Read More)...

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President Biden Issues Executive Order on AI

2023-10-30

President Joe Biden signed a first-of-its kind executive order Oct. 30 on the development of artificial intelligence (AI), to shape how the powerful technology evolves in a way that can maximize its potential but limit its risks. (Read More)...

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Developing a Habit of Delivering Frequent but Informal Feedback

2023-10-25

Lindsay is an HR director at an aerospace manufacturing and design company with 200 employees, and she's concerned that her analytical, introverted management team may not be communicating enough with staff engineers and workers in support roles. (Read More)...

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States Are Banning Preferred Pronouns at Work, but Federal Guidelines Promote Inclusion. What Should HR Do?

2023-10-25

Before a cheering crowd at a Christian school in Tampa, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed legislation in March that prohibited students and teachers from being required to use pronouns that don't correspond to someone's biological sex. (Read More)...

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Tips for Navigating the Newly Released Form I-9

2023-10-24

I know there’s a new Form I-9 to verify eligibility to work in the United States. When do I need to start using it and what specific changes should I be paying attention to? (Read More)...

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New 2024 Computer Professionals, Licensed Physicians Rates

2023-10-20

California’s Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) announced 2024 rates (effective January 1, 2024) for the computer software employee exemption and the licensed physicians and surgeons exemption. (Read More)...

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Halloween in the Workplace: 10 Do’s and Don’ts

2023-10-16

For HR managers and employees alike, Halloween can be more of a trick than a treat. While workplace Halloween festivities can create an atmosphere that helps co-workers have fun and get to know each other, the fall holiday's central themes are dressing up and scaring people, which not everyone finds enjoyable. (Read More)...

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New Employment Laws Starting in 2024

2023-10-16

This year’s legislative session ended with a flurry and, as usual, hundreds of bills were sent to California Governor Newsom’s desk, many of which impact employment law. (Read More)...

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EEOC Proposes Updates to Workplace Harassment Guidance: Top 5 Takeaways and Next Steps for Employers

2023-10-13

The EEOC recently published its long-awaited proposal to update the agency’s Enforcement Guidance on Harassment in the Workplace, the first update to this crucial document in over 30 years. (Read More)...

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California Employers Should Not Ask About Marijuana Use

2023-10-13

California Gov. Gavin Newsom recently signed a new law to prohibit employers from asking job applicants or employees about their prior marijuana use. (Read More)...

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FP’s 5 Questions: Top Tips for HR Teams During Open Enrollment Season

2023-10-12

Most employers that operate health plans on a calendar-year basis kick-off open enrollment in November – which means you’re likely gearing up now for the annual influx of questions, (Read More)...

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California Establishes New Leave for Reproductive Loss

2023-10-12

On October 11, 2023, Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill into law allowing for leaves of absence for reproductive-related losses. Senate Bill 848 makes it an unlawful employment practice for an employer to refuse to grant an eligible employee’s request to take up to five days of leave following a reproductive loss event. (Read More)...

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Tips for Properly Filing an EEO-1 Report

2023-10-11

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently released an updated instructional booklet to help employers properly fill out their 2022 demographic data on the EEO-1 form. (Read More)...

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Medical Certification Important for Workers’ Comp Claim Absences

2023-10-06

We have an employee with an active workers’ compensation claim. We agreed with the employee that he would work a normal 40-hour-per-week schedule with exceptions for doctor’s appointments or therapy related to his injury. (Read More)...

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California Expands Paid Sick Leave: 5 Key Steps Employers Can Take to Prepare

2023-10-05

In the wake of numerous California cities passing local Paid Sick Leave (PSL) ordinances in recent years, the State of California has now taken matters into its own hands – and created yet more hurdles for employers. (Read More)...

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How to Respond When an Employee Badmouths You or Your Company

2023-10-05

Ben Lamarche, general manager of Lock Search Group's offices across Canada and in Boston, once found out that one of his 35 employees was badmouthing the company on an anonymous internal platform. (Read More)...

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Federal Government Issues Disability Resource Guide

2023-10-04

On the 50th anniversary of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the U.S. Department of Labor released a resource guide to help companies better understand the recruitment, hiring and employment of individuals with disabilities. (Read More)...

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California Enacts Nation’s First General Industry Workplace Violence Prevention Safety Requirements for Employers

2023-10-02

On September 30, 2023, California enacted the first general industry workplace violence prevention safety requirements in the United States that will be applicable to nearly all California employers, (Read More)...

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Revised California Criminal History Regulations Start October 1

2023-09-27

In July 2023, the California Civil Rights Department (CRD) approved revised regulations relating to the use of criminal history in employment decisions under California’s Fair Chance Act. (Read More)...

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HR Professional Day 2023: Celebrating Those Who Manage, Maintain the HR Lifecycle

2023-09-26

Since 1959, HR professionals have been honored on September 26 — known as Human Resource Professional Day — for their hard work and contributions to their organizations. (Read More)...

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California’s Overtime Rules May Supersede Federal Law

2023-09-25

California's law on overtime pay differs substantially from the proposed rule on overtime pay recently issued by the U.S. Department of Labor, so employers will need to pay close attention to the details of both to remain in compliance. (Read More)...

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After the Vote: Implementing an Alternative Workweek Schedule

2023-09-21

My company adopted an alternative workweek schedule. Does this mean that all employees must work our alternative four-day 10-hour shift schedule, or can employees choose between the alternative schedule and a traditional five-day eight-hour shift schedule? (Read More)...

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How Core Weeks and Days Boost Return to Office

2023-09-18

As many employers have struggled to motivate remote employees to return to the office, the J.M. Smucker Company has had success by instituting a schedule it had never used before: core weeks. (Read More)...

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Intermittent Family Leave May Include Transfer to Different Position

2023-09-14

Can we transfer an employee to a different position if the employee needs to take intermittent FMLA/CFRA leave for his medical treatments? (Read More)...

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Reporting Time Pay: When It’s Owed Depends on Circumstances

2023-09-13

My employee showed up for her shift in the wrong safety equipment, then later went home sick after clocking in for 30 minutes. Do I owe her “reporting time pay”? (Read More)...

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Employers Respond as COVID-19 Cases Rise

2023-09-12

Aback-to-school spike in COVID-19 cases is prompting some employers to adopt a back-to-basics approach to disease prevention. At the same time, many employers are imposing return-to-office mandates. (Read More)...

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Quick COVID-19 Refresher for Employers

2023-09-12

Nicknamed after the Greek goddess of strife and discord, Eris — the latest dominant coronavirus subvariant infecting people across the country — may cause HR departments to panic as they remember the existence of various federal, state and local COVID-19 protocols. (Read More)...

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Next Version of E-Verify Will Bring Big Changes

2023-09-08

The proposed features for the upcoming revamped version of E-Verify would fundamentally change the way employment eligibility verification is conducted, according to a proposal from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). (Read More)...

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Closely Examine Overtime Ramifications for Exempt Positions Earning Less than $60K

2023-09-08

In response to the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL's) proposed overtime rule, employers should look carefully at any exempt positions earning less than $60,000 per year, said Kevin Young, an attorney with Seyfarth in Atlanta, to attendees of a SHRM Government Affairs webcast on Sept. 6. (Read More)...

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California’s New AI Executive Order Lays Groundwork for Employers and Businesses: Your 10-Step Action Plan

2023-09-06

California Governor Gavin Newsom issued a groundbreaking executive order today charting a course for the business community given the explosion of artificial intelligence use across all industry sectors (Read More)...

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As Summer Ends, Workers Head Back to the Office

2023-09-05

Many employers marked Sept. 5—the day after Labor Day—as the date by which employees would be required to return to offices after working from home during much of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Read More)...

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2022 EEO-1 Reporting Period Will Open on October 31, 2023

2023-09-05

The EEOC has announced that the long-delayed 2022 EEO-1 reporting period will finally open on October 31, 2023. The deadline for filing will be December 5, 2023. (Read More)...

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How to Document Remote Verification of I-9s

2023-09-01

Qualified E-Verify users in good standing now have the option to verify I-9 forms remotely, but how to document compliance isn't clear. (Read More)...

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Labor Department’s Proposed Overtime Rule Could Raise Salary Floor to $55k: Here Are 8 Ways Employers Can Prepare Now

2023-08-30

Employers may need to adjust their pay practices now that the Labor Department has issued its long-anticipated proposal to raise the salary threshold for exempt employees (Read More)...

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IRS Announces 2024 Health Plan Affordability Threshold

2023-08-30

The IRS announced that the 2024 health plan affordability threshold—which is used to determine if an employer's lowest-premium health plan meets the Affordable Care Act's (ACA's) affordability requirement—will be 8.39 percent of an employee's household income. (Read More)...

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Bereavement Leave for Complex Family Relationships

2023-08-28

My employee wants to use California’s new bereavement leave after the death of the father of her child — with whom she lived but never married. Another requested it for her ex-father-in-law, whom she remained close to after her divorce. (Read More)...

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No Mention of Break Room Appliances in Wage Orders Governing Working Conditions

2023-08-25

An employee is complaining about not having enough room in the break room refrigerator for their lunch. Just what is the employer supposed to provide in the break room? (Read More)...

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Even in ‘At-Will’ California, It’s Wise to Follow Disciplinary Process

2023-08-23

We opened up an office in California recently. We have a couple of problem employees, but I heard California employment is “at-will” and we can just terminate their employment. Is that true? (Read More)...

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Take Care with Last Chance Agreements

2023-08-23

Last chance agreements provide workers facing discharge with a final opportunity to remain employed. Thus, the agreements need to be used—and worded—carefully. (Read More)...

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Are You Thinking About Bringing Your Employees Back to the Office? Read This First

2023-08-18

You may have read recent headlines about companies making moves to bring more workers back onsite. Even Zoom — the online meeting platform that got many people through the pandemic — is calling for a bigger in-person presence in the workplace. (Read More)...

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Steps to Follow When Providing Lactation Accommodation to Employee

2023-08-17

One of my employees is returning from pregnancy leave and is asking for lactation accommodations. What must we do to accommodate this employee? (Read More)...

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DOL Seeks Comment on SECURE 2.0 Reporting, Disclosure Changes

2023-08-14

The Department of Labor (DOL) is seeking public feedback on a variety of SECURE Act 2.0 provisions. (Read More)...

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EEOC Breaks New Ground by Settling First-Ever AI Discrimination Lawsuit: 10 Pointers to Avoid Robot Bias

2023-08-14

We’ve reached another milestone in the AI revolution: the federal agency charged with enforcing anti-bias laws just recorded its first-ever settlement in a case involving AI discrimination in the workplace. (Read More)...

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5 Tips to Avoid Workplace Retaliation Claims

2023-08-10

Employers know how important it is to comply with workplace anti-discrimination laws – but equally important is ensuring that employees who complain about perceived discrimination are not retaliated against for doing so, (Read More)...

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California’s 2024 Minimum Wage Increases to $16 Per Hour

2023-08-08

On Monday, July 31, the California Department of Finance Director Joe Stephenshaw officially certified that beginning January 1, 2024, California’s minimum wage will increase from $15.50 per hour to $16 per hour for all employers, regardless of size. (Read More)...

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Instant Pay Benefits Booming in Popularity Among Generation Z Workers

2023-08-07

The days of waiting two weeks or more for your paycheck to hit your bank account may be numbered. In an increasingly connected world (Read More)...

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How to Defuse Workplace Conflict

2023-08-07

Employees and managers spend an average of over four hours each week dealing with conflict, and 36 percent of employees say they deal with workplace conflict either "often" or "all the time," (Read More)...

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California’s Revised Criminal History Regulations Approved

2023-08-04

As the rulemaking body for the California Civil Rights Department (CRD), the California Civil Rights Council (CRC) has been working for several months on revised regulations related to the use of criminal history in employment decisions under the Fair Chance Act. (Read More)...

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Workplace Law Update: 22 Essential Items on Your August To-Do List

2023-08-04

It’s hard to keep up with all the recent changes to labor and employment law, especially since the law always seems to evolve at a rapid pace. (Read More)...

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Handbooks Need Revision Following NLRB Ruling

2023-08-04

Many employer handbooks and policies likely should be reviewed and revised following a landmark Aug. 2 ruling by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), Stericycle. (Read More)...

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New Form I-9 Released

2023-08-01

Today’s the day! Nine months after the previous Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification expired, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has published new, revised versions of the Form I-9 documents. Employers should start using these new Form I-9 documents as soon as possible. (Read More)...

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EEO-1 Data Collection Pushed to Fall 2023

2023-07-25

Employers can enjoy their summer vacation a little more this year — the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) tentatively announced that the 2022 EEO-1 Component 1 data collection will start in Fall 2023 versus the originally anticipated July timeframe. (Read More)...

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The ADA Turns 33: Reflecting on Progress Made, Challenges That Remain

2023-07-25

Upon its passage in 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) established workplace protections, boosted economic self-sufficiency and expanded employment opportunities for millions of people with disabilities. (Read More)...

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Pay Attention to Prohibition on Comp Time for Nonexempt Workers in Private Sector

2023-07-24

Comp time is allowed in the public sector, but private-sector employers are prohibited from offering future paid time off to nonexempt employees in lieu of complying with the overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). (Read More)...

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California Employer on the Hook for Expense Reimbursement During COVID-19 Stay-Home Orders: 4 Key Takeaways

2023-07-24

On the heels of a rare win for employers regarding COVID-19 liability, a California appellate court was quick to remind employers in the state that there’s no shortage of pandemic-related requirements still in place. (Read More)...

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USCIS: Employers Must Switch to New Version of Form I-9

2023-07-21

U.S.Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced Friday a new Form I-9—which has been streamlined and shortened—that employers should use beginning Aug. 1, 2023. (Read More)...

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Unlimited Paid Time Off Policies Are Attractive, But Have Risks

2023-07-21

In this episode of The Workplace podcast, CalChamber employment law expert Matthew Roberts sits down with Bianca Saad, CalChamber vice president of labor and employment for content, training and advice, to discuss unlimited paid time off (PTO) policies. (Read More)...

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A California Labor Agency Returns, and Employers Will Feel the Impact

2023-07-20

California has re-established the Industrial Welfare Commission (IWC), an agency that can develop strict industry-specific rules that may affect wages, working conditions and workers' rights. (Read More)...

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OSHA Expands Injury and Illness Reporting Requirement

2023-07-19

More employers will be required to submit workplace injury and illness information under a final rule released by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) on July 17. The new rule will take effect on Jan. 1, 2024. (Read More)...

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Protect Workers From Heat Illness During High Heat

2023-07-14

As high temperatures hit California — reaching triple digits in some locations — employers must take steps to protect outdoor workers from heat illness by providing water, rest, shade and training. (Read More)...

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Tips on Physical Reverification of Virtually Verified Remote Employees

2023-07-14

As was previously reported, employers have until August 30, 2023, to conduct in-person physical verification of identity and employment eligibility documentation for all employees who were onboarded using remote virtual verification between March 20, 2020 and July 31, 2023. (Read More)...

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Employers May Need to Change Religious Accommodation Policies

2023-07-11

In light of a U.S. Supreme Court decision last month, employers may need to examine and modify their policies on religious accommodations. (Read More)...

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California Supreme Court Shuts Down COVID-19 Liability Claim from Worker’s Wife: 4 Key Takeaways for Employers

2023-07-10

The California Supreme Court handed employers a win last week by making it clear that they do not have a duty to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to employees' household members. (Read More)...

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How to Track Family Leave When Workweek Includes a Holiday

2023-07-07

We have an employee that is currently on California Family Rights Act (CFRA)/Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave and will be using leave during the week of the Fourth of July holiday. (Read More)...

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How to Avoid Legal Nightmares in Emails and Instant Messages

2023-07-05

Imagine discussing an employee-related legal concern with your boss, in-house counsel or outside labor attorney, only to realize that you wrote something in an email or instant message that could devastate your case in litigation. (Read More)...

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Sacramento Court Agrees with CalChamber: Privacy Agency Must Wait to Enforce Rules

2023-07-03

On Friday, June 30, the Sacramento Superior Court ruled that the California Privacy Protection Agency (CPPA) must delay enforcement of any individual regulation for a one-year period following the date it goes into effect. (Read More)...

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U.S. Supreme Court Updates Federal Religious Accommodation Test

2023-06-30

On June 29, 2023, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously revised Title VII’s religious accommodation and “undue hardship” analysis — the first decision to address the federal religious accommodation test in decades (Groff v. Dejoy, No. 22–174, (U.S. June 29, 2023)). (Read More)...

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4 Ways to Boost Employee Satisfaction with HDHPs

2023-06-29

High-deductible health plans (HDHPs) have become a mainstay of many employee benefits programs since their introduction in the early aughts. (Read More)...

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CDPH Updates “Outbreak” Definition, Masking Guidance

2023-06-28

On June 20, 2023, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) updated its COVID-19 public health order and guidance, changing the definition of “outbreak” in non-health care settings (Read More)...

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Strategies for Reducing Record-Level Employee Stress

2023-06-28

Employees around the world are as stressed as they've ever been, according to a recent survey of more than 122,000 workers in 160 countries. (Read More)...

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Mandatory Overtime Impacts FMLA Compliance

2023-06-27

Employers that require overtime hours need to be aware of how the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) may apply differently to workers assigned to mandatory overtime. (Read More)...

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Pregnant Workers Fairness Act Takes Effect Today

2023-06-26

The obligation under the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) to provide reasonable accommodations for known limitations related to pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions kicks in today. We've gathered articles on the news from SHRM Online and other media outlets. (Read More)...

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Timing of Meal Breaks Can Avert Strict Liability for Violations

2023-06-22

Our employees start work at 8 a.m. The owner of the company requires that meal breaks start at 1 p.m. (Read More)...

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Health Savings Account (HSA) Limits Increase for 2024

2023-06-21

In 2024, the Health Savings Account (HSA) limits, which are indexed for inflation every year, will increase, per the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). (Read More)...

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Time to Display Revised Workplace Posters

2023-06-20

Due to new rights granted under the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) and the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers Act (PUMP Act), employers must display a new version of workplace posters. (Read More)...

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How to Improve Remote Employees’ Well-Being

2023-06-19

Before the pandemic, about 20 percent of HubSpot's 7,000 employees worked remotely. At the end of 2021, the cloud-based software developer, which is headquartered in Cambridge, Mass. (Read More)...

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Finalization of Regulations Clears the Path for Employers to Complete California Privacy Rights Act Compliance Efforts Before June 30, 2023 Deadline

2023-06-14

After months of uncertainty, the rulemaking process for the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA), the first-ever comprehensive U.S. data privacy law applicable to human resources data (“HR Data”), concluded on March 29, 2023....

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Marijuana-Testing Laws Continue to Evolve

2023-06-14

The ongoing flurry of marijuana legislation, court cases and cannabis-based products makes it difficult for HR professionals to craft policies that meet their company's drug-testing needs. (Read More)...

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COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave Relief Grant Program Begins

2023-06-13

Eligible California small businesses may now apply for a California state program that awards funds for costs incurred from COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave. (Read More)...

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Avoid Recent I-9 Traps that Arise with Remote Hires

2023-06-13

The Form I-9 was born in 1986 but still creates tension between business needs and legal requirements, particularly with remote hires, said John Fay, an attorney and director of product strategy at Equifax Workforce Solutions in Phoenix. I-9 audits by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) are another pain point. (Read More)...

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Annual performance reviews prevent many employees from being engaged and distract companies from keeping agile, according to Joe Rotella, SHRM-SCP, chief value officer at Delphia Consulting LLC in Columbus, Ohio.

2023-06-12

Annual performance reviews prevent many employees from being engaged and distract companies from keeping agile, according to Joe Rotella, SHRM-SCP, chief value officer at Delphia Consulting LLC in Columbus, Ohio. ...

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How to Motivate Employees Without Money or Promotions

2023-06-08

The reality in many workplaces today is that the best and brightest talent will jump ship if they feel they've topped out on salary or can't expect a promotion anytime soon. (Read More)...

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Nonwork-Related Death at Work Still Must Be Reported to Cal/OSHA

2023-06-02

An employee died of a heart attack while at work. It was not caused by his employment. Do I have to report this death to the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA)? (Read More)...

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Job Offer Letters: What to Include and Exclude

2023-06-02

When writing job offer letters, HR must walk the tightrope between welcoming candidates enthusiastically and scaring them off. Here's an overview of what to include in and exclude from the letters. (Read More)...

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California’s Local Minimum Wage Rates Increasing July 1

2023-06-01

While many California cities and counties increase their local minimum wage rates at the start of each year, several localities implement their local minimum wage rate increases on July 1. (Read More)...

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Remote Work Associated with Rise in Substance Use Disorders

2023-06-01

"Why don't we do a little day drinking? Blame it on the workday," sings country band Little Big Town in its 2014 hit "Day Drinking." (Read More)...

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Be Careful When Calculating FMLA Leave for a Week with a Holiday

2023-06-01

Anew opinion letter from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) clarifies how employers are supposed to calculate leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) when it's taken during a week that includes a holiday. (Read More)...

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Using AI in Employment Selection Procedures Guidance

2023-05-31

Artificial intelligence (AI) — once only in science fiction and Hollywood movies — is a prevalent tool today in manufacturing, healthcare, marketing and education. (Read More)...

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New Guidance Explains Requirements of the PUMP Act

2023-05-26

New guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) answers some questions employers might have about complying with break time and space requirements under the federal Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers (PUMP) Act. (Read More)...

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Terminating Employee on Workers’ Comp Involves Delicate Decisions

2023-05-22

We are a smaller employer with only 16 employees, and we have an employee who has been on workers’ compensation for more than eight months. Can we terminate his employment? (Read More)...

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Performance Appraisal Bombshells: Delivering Bad News

2023-05-22

The first rule of performance reviews is that employees should never be surprised by what is said. Assuming that managers are speaking with their reports in real time throughout the year, providing transparent communication and soliciting feedback, (Read More)...

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Form I-9 COVID-19-Related Flexibilities End July 31, 2023

2023-05-18

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has officially announced that on July 31, 2023, the temporary flexibilities around Form I-9 document inspection (Read More)...

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EEOC’s Latest AI Guidance Sends Warning to Employers: 5 Things You Need to Know

2023-05-18

Employers using or thinking about using artificial intelligence (AI) to aid with workplace tasks received another reminder from the federal government that their actions will be closely scrutinized by the EEOC for possible employment discrimination violations. (Read More)...

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IRS Gives Big Boost to HSA, HDHP Limits in 2024

2023-05-17

Thanks in part to persistent high inflation, employees will be able to sock away a lot more money in their health savings accounts (HSAs) next year. (Read More)...

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Protect Outdoor Workers From Heat Illness

2023-05-17

It’s heating up throughout California — so the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) reminds employers to protect their outdoor workers from heat illness, which means providing water, rest, shade and training. (Read More)...

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How to Prepare to Update I-9s Completed Remotely

2023-05-15

Attorneys recommend organizations that have to update hundreds—sometimes thousands—of remotely completed I-9s should create an action plan that includes communication and training.(Read More)...

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Worker Productivity Is Down. Is Remote Work the Cause?

2023-05-08

U.S. worker productivity year-over-year has declined for five straight quarters for the first time on record. Does that support the arguments made by critics of remote work that traditional, in-person work produces better results? (Read More)...

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In-Person Inspection of I-9s Due Aug. 30

2023-05-08

Employers will have a few more days to inspect identity and employment authorization documents for their remote employees in person. (Read More)...

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Employers Should Purge Old I-9s

2023-05-04

Employers often fail to shred old Forms I-9 that are beyond the retention requirement, even though this can lead to compliance liability. (Read More)...

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What California Employers Should Know When Hiring Minors

2023-05-01

As the temperatures rise, many employers, including those in the retail industry, may be fielding applications from minors looking for summer work. Before hiring applicants under the age of 18, it's important to understand the requirements that apply to that segment of the workforce. (Read More)...

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Employees May Use Sick/Family Leaves for Designated Person

2023-05-01

My employee requested time off to care for her neighbor who just had surgery. Do I have to grant her request? (Read More)...

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Expert Advice on Implementing Stay Interviews

2023-04-24

Marshall Goldsmith is a multiple-time New York Times bestselling author and widely considered the world's foremost executive coach. He is not, however, an HR professional (although he told me, "I love HR!"). (Read More)...

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Watch Out for These FMLA Eligibility Determination Missteps

2023-04-20

Employers often misunderstand the Family and Medical Leave Act's (FMLA's) definition of an employee who is eligible for FMLA leave, and they can't figure out when the worker has a qualifying reason for the time off. Here are some tips on making FMLA eligibility determinations in line with the law. (Read More)...

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How to Recruit for Hard-to-Fill Blue-Collar Positions

2023-04-17

In a time when more people are going to college and pursuing white-collar jobs after graduation, employers are having difficulty overcoming a shortage of blue-collar workers. (Read More)...

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Employers Must Explore Reasonable Accommodations for Religious Beliefs

2023-04-12

Religion is one of just two protected classes under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) — disability is the other — that requires employers to explore and provide applicants or employees with a reasonable accommodation where appropriate. (Read More)...

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Updated FCRA Consumer Rights Notice Is Required, Now Available

2023-04-04

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released an updated "Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act" notice for employers to use before conducting background checks. (Read More)...

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New Bereavement Leave Requirements for Private, Public Employers

2023-03-27

What are the requirements of California’s new bereavement leave law?...

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California Changes COVID-19 Isolation Requirements – What Do Employers Need to Know?

2023-03-14

California public health officials just issued updated COVID-19 isolation guidance that at first blush seems to smooth the way for simpler workplace compliance obligations. (Read More)...

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Tips for Remote Workers to Stay Cyber Secure

2023-03-13

Roughly one-half to two-thirds of U.S. employees work remotely at least some of the time. This trend, spurred in large part by the COVID-19 pandemic, hasn't gone unnoticed by cybercrooks. (Read More)...

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John Egan

2023-03-06

How many resumes have you read in your life? Hundreds? Thousands? No matter the amount, do you know how to spot a lie on a resume? (Read More)...

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Is Telehealth Really Saving Money for Employers?

2023-03-03

Along with other virtual services since the pandemic started, there has been an increase in interest and adoption of virtual health care solutions. While telehealth options existed pre-pandemic, they weren't highly utilized. (Read More)...

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Allen Smith, J.D. February 14, 2023

2023-02-16

On February 15, 2023, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America, et al. v. Bonta, et al. No. 20-15291 (9th Cir. Feb. 15, 2023), which invalidates California’s AB 51 (Read More)...

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California Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Timekeeping Rounding Case

2023-02-15

On February 1, 2023, the California Supreme Court granted a petition to review the California Court of Appeal’s decision in Camp v. Home Depot U.S.A., Inc. In the appellate court’s decision, Home Depot’s neutral rounding policies were considered invalid for timekeeping purposes as the employer used electronic time clocks that recorded punches to the minute. (Read More)...

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Valentine’s Day: What Employers Should Know About Workplace Relationships

2023-02-14

Over the last four decades, the instances of romances between coworkers have risen and fallen — and then risen again! (Read More)...

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DOL Explains When FLSA, FMLA Cover Remote Employees

2023-02-14

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued a field assistance bulletin (FAB) on Feb. 9 to clarify the application of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to nonexempt remote workers, as well as the Family and Medical Leave Act's (FMLA's) hours-of-service eligibility requirement for teleworkers. (Read More)...

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How Employers Are Managing Compensation Challenges in 2023

2023-02-13

With 2023 well underway, many employers are still trying to find the right levels of pay for their employees. The stakes are high: If employers don't get compensation right, they may find themselves losing out on talent. (Read More)...

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EEO-1 Reporting Will Begin in July

2023-02-13

Employers need to understand that the timeline for submitting their demographic data to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is somewhat different this year. (Read More)...

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Phishing Attacks: What You Need to Know

2023-02-07

Cybersecurity professionals consider phishing attacks to be the "most dangerous" threat to cybersecurity for their organizations, according to research by Cyber Security Hub, an online news site for cybersecurity professionals. (Read More)...

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Inflation Caused Many Employees to Stop Saving for Retirement in 2022

2023-02-01

Inflation—which hit a 40-year high last year but has recently shown signs of abating—has taken a dramatic toll on consumers' lives and wallets, affecting nearly every aspect of their finances. (Read More)...

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When Disasters Strike: Pay, Leave and Related Issues

2023-01-10

Tragic events bring an all-too timely reminder of pay and benefits issues that HR managers should bear in mind. Although it is practically impossible to be fully prepared for any disaster, it is important for employers to be aware of employment laws that may be implicated in such situations. (Read More)...

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How to Train Young Managers to Supervise Older Employees

2023-01-05

Perhaps no one knows better than HR professionals that the workplace is aging, and teaching younger managers how to work effectively with older employees who report to them is becoming a critical workplace exercise. (Read More)...

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New Year's Resolutions for HR Departments of One

2023-01-05

Going to the gym more often? Check. Spending quality time with the family? Yep. Learning a new hobby? Sure. Improving the HR department? Of course. (Read More)...

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Employees Dipping into Retirement Savings

2023-01-04

Financial woes are continuing to impact employees, with scores of workers dipping into their retirement accounts and many more worried about their expenses, savings and financial stress. (Read More)...

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Employee Arrested While Off Duty? Proceed Cautiously; Gather Facts

2022-10-13

One of our employees did not show up for work yesterday and failed to call or otherwise notify us of his absence. We have a no-call/no-show/no-job policy. Another employee told us that the missing employee was arrested over the weekend and is in jail. Can we fire him? (Read More)...

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DHS/ICE Extends I-9 Remote, Virtual Verification until July 31, 2023

2022-10-12

On October 11, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced a nine-month extension until July 31, 2023, of the policy allowing remote, virtual verification of the documentation required for a Form I-9 when a workforce is working remotely. It is unknown if this extension will be the last one. (Read More)...

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Final Paycheck: Employee Pickup or Mail? Answers to FAQs

2022-10-11

If an employee quits without giving any notice, I believe I have a window of time to prepare a final paycheck. Does the employee have to come pick it up or should I mail it to them? (Read More)...

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State Laws Guarantee Time Off to Vote

2022-10-10

With Election Day coming up on Nov. 8, employers need to stay aware of state laws that guarantee workers time off to vote. (Read More)...

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California Creates Bereavement Leave Requirement

2022-10-10

 On September 29, 2022, Governor Newsom signed AB 1949, which creates protected bereavement leave under the California Family Rights Act (CFRA). As of January 1, 2023, AB 1949 makes it unlawful for an employer to refuse to grant an eligible employee the opportunity to take up to five days of bereavement leave upon the death of a family member. (Read More)...

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New California Law Modifies and Extends California Labor Code COVID-19 Exposure Notification Requirements, But Adds Confusion to Existing Employer Obligations

2022-10-06

California Assembly Bill (AB) 2693, signed into law on September 29, 2022, made changes to COVID-19 notification requirements by amending California Labor Code section 6409.6 (Duties of employer when notified of potential exposure to COVID-19) and extending its provisions until January 1, 2024. (Read More)...

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How to Create an Introvert-Friendly Hiring Process

2022-10-06

Traditional hiring practices often favor extroverted candidates who may be more adept at interviewing than their more-introverted counterparts. This bias can lead employers to overlook talented candidates who have the skills and experience to do the job but may lack interviewing finesse. (Read More)...

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4th Quarter 2022 'Quick Hits' for Plan Sponsors

2022-10-04

As we enter the fourth quarter of 2022, sponsors and administrators of employee benefit plans have a lot to juggle. From open enrollment and required notices to plan document deadlines, it is a busy time of year. (Read More)...

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Avoid Common FMLA Certification and Recertification Mistakes

2022-10-03

Collecting valid and complete certification and recertification documentation from employees is one of the best ways to reduce Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) abuse. (Read More)...

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New 2023 California Employment Laws

2022-10-03

It’s that time of year again! With a deadline of September 30, Governor Gavin Newsom signed many of the California Legislature’s labor and employment bills into law. Here’s a quick look at some of the new laws that will impact employers. Unless noted otherwise, the new laws take effect January 1, 2023. (Read More)...

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California Joins Growing List of Jurisdictions to Require Pay Scale Information in Job Postings: 7 Things You Need to Know

2022-09-28

As a result of Governor Newsom’s signature on legislation yesterday, California will soon join a growing list of state and local jurisdictions that require job postings to include pay scale information. (Read More)...

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Salary Negotiation Strategies for HR Professionals

2022-09-28

The largest raises you'll ever get in your career typically come from quitting a job and joining a new employer, though not everyone wants to jump ship. (Read More)...

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California Provides Protections for Workers Who Use Marijuana Outside Work

2022-09-28

On Sept. 18, California Gov. Newsom signed a law that will prohibit employers from penalizing workers for using marijuana outside of work. (Read More)...

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IRS Update Clarifies Prescreening Process of New Hires for Work Opportunity Tax Credit

2022-09-26

Updated online information from the IRS on prescreening job applicants is intended to help determine if hiring them would enable an employer to receive the federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), which is available to employers that hire designated categories of workers who face significant barriers to employment. (Read More)...

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OFCCP Announces ‘Minor’ Changes to Directive on Functional Affirmative Action Plans

2022-09-26

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) recently announced “minor” changes to its directive on Functional Affirmative Action Plans (FAAPs) – but some of the changes don’t resonate as “minor.” (Read More)...

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Survey Says: Submit Your Annual Business Survey!

2022-09-26

Don’t ignore a letter from the U.S. Department of Commerce requesting that you complete an Annual Business Survey (ABS). These annual surveys are mandatory, and failure to complete it can subject you to up to a $5,000 fine, or $10,000 for intentionally providing false information. (Read More)...

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5 Important Employer Steps for ACA Compliance Reporting in 2023

2022-09-20

Applicable large employers (ALEs)—those with 50 or more full-time or equivalent employees—must adhere to Affordable Care Act (ACA) annual reporting rules to remain compliant regarding group health plan offerings. (Read More)...

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Viewpoint: Don’t Underestimate the Importance of Exit Interviews

2022-09-20

If you've seen any news in the past year, you know we're currently knee-deep in one of the tightest labor markets in years. It all started in spring 2021, when burned-out workers triggered unprecedented churn, leaving millions of jobs open. (Read More)...

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California Workers Gain New Cannabis Protections: What Employers Need to Know

2022-09-19

A new protection is on the way for employees in California who use cannabis before or after completing their workday. (Read More)...

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Check-Ins, Continual Listening Can Calm Employee Anxiety

2022-09-16

It is amazing what an HR generalist can learn simply by walking through the workplace once a week to check in with the staff. (Read More)...

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Challenging Unemployment Compensation Benefits: When Is It Worth It?

2022-09-16

Knowing when employers have a strong case against paying unemployment insurance (UI) benefits claims—and when they don't—factors into whether employers challenge these claims. Employers should be straightforward in response to questions from state UI departments and avoid missteps when challenging benefits. (Read More)...

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How to Spot Suicidal Behaviors in the Workplace

2022-09-13

September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month—an effort to destigmatize suicide, educate the public on the importance of mental health care and provide prevention resources to those who need them. (Read More)...

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How to Respond When an Employee Rejects Their Performance Review

2022-09-13

Performance reviews are used for a variety of purposes—merit increases, promotions, transfers and more. For those reasons, it makes sense that every employee wants to receive a satisfactory review. So what happens if an employee receives a poor performance review and doesn't agree with it? (Read More)...

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Standards Board Moving to Adopt Non-Emergency COVID Regulation

2022-09-12

I hear that the California Division of Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) Standards Board will be presenting for public comment and future adoption a final version of the Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS) regarding the hazards related to COVID-19 on September 15, 2022. How are these new requirements going to affect my operations? (Read More)...

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Final Paycheck: Employee Pickup or Mail? Answers to FAQs

2022-09-09

If an employee quits without giving any notice, I believe I have a window of time to prepare a final paycheck. Does the employee have to come pick it up or should I mail it to them? (Read More)...

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Update on COVID Paid Sick Leave

2022-09-06

AB 152 (Committee on Budget) COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave passed the Legislature on August 31 and awaits action by the Governor. (Read More)...

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2023 Salary Budgets Projected to Stay at 20-Year High but Trail Inflation

2022-09-06

Salary increase budgets in the U.S. are projected to grow, on average, just over 4 percent for 2023, less than half of the current annual inflation rate of 8.5 percent, according to new survey data. (Read More)...

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Confidentiality Is Key When Employees Are on FMLA or ADA Leave

2022-09-06

Whether an employee is on continuous or intermittent leave, the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) restrict sharing information about the employee in virtually the same way and emphasize keeping medical information confidential. (Read More)...

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California Passes Bill on Fast-Food Employment Standards

2022-09-06

California lawmakers just passed the first bill in the nation that aims to enact specific workplace rules and standards for fast-food employees. (Read More)...

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Company BBQ: Factors to Consider Before Sending Invites to Employees

2022-09-01

We are having an offsite company barbecue this summer. What should I consider before hosting this event? (Read More)...

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Fisher Phillips Launches CCPA Resource Center After California Lawmakers Keep Employers on the Hook: 5 Steps to Take Now

2022-08-30

When the California Legislature wraps up its 2022 session on August 31, it will do so without having extended an exemption that kept employment data from being part of the California Consumer Privacy Act’s (CCPA) many requirements. (Read More)...

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Open Enrollment Success Relies on Effective Communications

2022-08-29

The need for effective open enrollment communications has never been more critical—or more complicated, given the rise of hybrid mixes of remote and onsite work arrangements. This requires a renewed focus on developing communications that meet employees' needs wherever they are and whenever they need to connect. (Read More)...

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Standards Board Moving to Adopt Non-Emergency COVID Regulation

2022-08-26

I hear that the Cal/OSHA Standards Board will be presenting for public comment and future adoption a final version of the Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS) regarding the hazards related to COVID-19 on September 15, 2022. How are these new requirements going to affect my operations? (Read More)...

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Personnel/Payroll Record Requests: Timely Response Important

2022-08-25

An employee has asked for a copy of his personnel file and payroll records. What documents is the employee legally entitled to receive? (Read More)...

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4 Steps to Stay in Compliance with OFCCP’s New Affirmative Action Compensation Analysis Requirements

2022-08-25

When government officials released new guidance last week explaining how they will evaluate federal contractors’ compliance with new compensation analysis obligations, they calmed the nerves of the contractor community by confirming they would not require employers to turn over attorney-client privileged material. (Read More)...

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Federal Student-Debt Relief Raises Issues for Workplace Benefits

2022-08-25

President Joe Biden announced the federal government will repay up to $10,000 of student loan debt for those earning less than $125,000 annually and further extended the COVID-19 student loan repayment moratorium through the end of this year. (Read More)...

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Look at Alternatives to Layoffs

2022-08-24

Layoffs are rattling corporate America. In a survey of U.S. business executives by professional services firm PwC, 50 percent of respondents indicated they were reducing their companies' headcounts. (Read More)...

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Employers Are Poised to Expand Mental Health Coverage in 2023

2022-08-22

Employers enhanced their mental health and well-being benefits for employees during the COVID-19 pandemic and are poised to continue expanding these offerings in 2023, new research shows. Even so, challenges in accessing care remain for many employees. (Read More) ...

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How to Respond to Class Actions

2022-08-22

Frequently involving wage and hour issues, class actions against employers can result in lengthy litigation—but early response to them may reduce damages. (Read More)...

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4 Key Actions Employers Can Take to Best Prepare for an Active Shooter

2022-08-18

The recent unfortunate and heartbreaking events in Uvalde, Texas and at the Greenwood Park Mall in Indiana serve as stark reminders to employers that an active shooting event can occur almost anywhere. (Read More)...

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California Poised to Expand Pay Transparency, Reporting Obligations

2022-08-18

class="ZWSC-cleaned">Abill to increase pay transparency in California steps closer to becoming law.  California Senate Bill 1162, introduced in February and with some amendments since its initial form, passed the Assembly Appropriations Committee on August 11. (Read More)...

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Inflation Reduction Act's Health Care Provisions Could Affect Employers

2022-08-16

The climate spending and tax legislation President Joe Biden signed into law on Aug. 16 contains provisions that could affect employers that sponsor group health plans. Also, the legislation's increase in IRS auditors could impact employer-sponsored retirement plans. (Read More)...

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Employers Are Rescinding Job Offers Again—How to Do So, if You Must

2022-08-16

Stories of rescinded job offers have begun to surface, especially in fast-growth industries like technology and real estate, in another sign that the red-hot job market is starting to cool. (Read More)...

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Top 10 Mistakes in Handling I-9 Forms

2022-08-12

Internal I-9 audits should result in documented changes in practices, not just corrections to the forms, according to Mira Mdivani, an immigration attorney in Overland Park, Kan. (Read More)...

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Tread Carefully When an Employee Gets Arrested Outside of Work

2022-08-10

When an employee is arrested outside of work hours, it's never welcome news, but there are some key do's and don'ts for HR professionals to keep in mind. (Read More)...

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No FMLA Claim Without Expressed Intention to Take FMLA Leave

2022-08-09

The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found that a plaintiff's claims under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) could not proceed to trial because he had never expressed an intention to take leave under the act. (Read More) ...

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Monkeypox Not Likely to Spread Through Workplace, Travel

2022-08-09

A world exhausted from fighting COVID-19 for more than two years is now facing another potential hazard after the World Health Organization (WHO) declared monkeypox a "public health emergency of international concern" on July 23 and the U.S. declared a public health emergency on Aug. 4. (Read More)...

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IRS Sets 2023 Health Plan Premium Affordability Threshold at 9.12% of Pay

2022-08-05

The IRS announced that the 2023 health plan affordability threshold—used to determine if an employer's lowest-premium health plan meets the Affordable Care Act's (ACA's) affordability requirement—will be 9.12 percent of an employee's "household income," down from the 2022 limit of 9.61 percent. (Read More)...

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What Team Sports Can Teach Us About DE&I

2022-08-03

Achieving diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) in the workplace continues to be a challenge for most organizations. (Read More)...

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Workers Have Trouble Unplugging While on PTO

2022-07-25

Employees in the U.S. are notorious for not taking their allotted, employer-paid vacation time. Even when they do take time off, they often use some of that time to work and check e-mail. (Read More)...

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Personnel/Payroll Record Requests: Timely Response Important

2022-07-22

An employee has asked for a copy of his personnel file and payroll records. What documents is the employee legally entitled to receive? (Read More)...

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Employers May Need to Update Forms I-9 as COVID-19 Era Policy Ends

2022-07-22

As a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) COVID-19-era Form I-9 policy ends, employers need to make sure they have updated their relevant Forms I-9 by July 31, 2022. (Read More)...

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Updated Cal/OSHA, EEOC COVID-19 Guidance

2022-07-22

While COVID-19 guidance, orders and regulatory changes haven’t been as frequent as they were in the past two years, employers should review a couple of recent updates, including clarification of “indoor air space” and new limits to an employer’s ability to require viral COVID-19 testing. (Read More)...

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Position Community Volunteering as an Employee Benefit

2022-07-20

Employees—especially younger workers—say they prefer to work for organizations with a strong commitment to corporate social responsibility (CSR). Importantly, this commitment must go beyond lip service to resonate with employees. (Read More)...

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Fine-Tune Benefits Before Open Enrollment

2022-07-18

Open enrollment this fall for 2023 employee benefits is an opportunity for organizations to showcase the value of the benefits packages they provide to employees—and to help stem high turnover rates. (Read More)...

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Q&A: What Employers Need to Know About the California Consumer Privacy Act’s Training Requirement

2022-07-18

When covered businesses collect personal information about consumers – including employees and job applicants – the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) requires them to comply with certain disclosure obligations, among many other requirements. (Read More)...

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Want To Keep Your Employees? Listen To Them

2022-07-18

Organizations are using 2022 as a "recovery year" from the pandemic and the Great Resignation that has followed. (Read More)...

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EEOC’s New Workplace COVID-19 Testing Rules Might Require You to Make Key Changes: 7 Takeaways for Employers

2022-07-14

Employers that continue to test workers for COVID-19 should review their policies to ensure they comply with updated guidelines released Tuesday by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). (Read More)...

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Return to the Workplace Gets Mixed Reviews

2022-07-13

In June, Tesla CEO Elon Musk demanded that all employees return to their onsite workspaces, according to a leaked e-mail thread. If workers refused, Musk would consider it a resignation. (Read More)...

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State Change in COVID-19 Definition of ‘Close Contact’ Leaves Questions for California Employers

2022-07-12

One of the most well-known elements of COVID-19 workplace safety was changed last month — to relatively little fanfare — and it has left California employers with many questions. (Read More)...

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TECHNOLOGY How to Prove Your Investments in HR Technology Are Paying Off

2022-07-11

Technology advances rapidly and, when it does, it's tempting to invest in new—or replacement—technology. The next best thing is always on the horizon. But company budgets are tight, and leaders want to be certain they are making the right investments in new technology. (Read More)...

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Companies Are Rethinking How They Hire Technical Talent

2022-07-11

Sargun Kaur knows from experience how flawed the process for hiring technical talent can be in some organizations. Kaur, the co-founder and CEO of Byteboard, a platform that assesses candidates for technical roles, is a former engineer who suffered through job interviews she believed weren't reflective of the skills or knowledge she'd need to succeed on the job. (Read More)...

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8 Ways HR Can Overcome Pushback During the Return to the Office

2022-07-06

Agrowing number of employers are bringing employees back onsite full time. While some workers welcome the return, others are more ambivalent about the prospect. (Read More)...

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What Gun Reform May Mean for HR

2022-07-06

In response to a rash of mass shootings in schools, grocery stores and other public places, Congress recently passed legislation signed by President Joe Biden that enhances gun safety reforms. (Read More) ...

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California Laws Generally Apply Only within Borders of State

2022-07-01


Since the pandemic, my company has been allowing employees to work from home. Without informing our human resources department, several of these employees have moved to other states. Now that these employees are living in other states, do the California overtime laws apply to these employees? (Read More)...

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IRS Launches 90-Day Pre-Audit Window to Correct Retirement Plan Errors

2022-06-28

The IRS has launched a pilot compliance program that gives plan sponsors a 90-day window prior to an IRS audit of their tax-qualified retirement plan, such as a 401(k) or defined benefit pension, to fix any discovered errors. (Read More)...

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Here To Stay? 5 Changes to Prepare for as Cal/OSHA Proposes Permanent COVID-19 Standard

2022-06-28

Many California employers were hopeful there was an end in sight for COVID-19 requirements – but recent activity from state workplace safety officials means that you will most likely need to comply with pandemic rules for at least the next two years. (Read More)...

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EEOC Adds 'X' Gender Marker to Questions During Charge Intake

2022-06-28

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced on June 27 full implementation of the opportunity to select a nonbinary "X" gender marker during the intake process for filing a charge of discrimination, fulfilling a promise made in March. (Read More)...

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An Employer’s Guide to Workplace Protections for Abortion-Related Decisions

2022-06-27

Employers likely have questions about abortion-related employment protections and healthcare benefits after Friday’s SCOTUS controversial decision that overturned Roe v. Wade. (Read More)...

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Roe v. Wade Overturned

2022-06-24

The U.S. Supreme Court in a June 24 decision upheld Mississippi’s restrictions on abortion, a ruling that may lead employers to revise their employee health care benefits. (Read More)...

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Steps to Take When Audit Reveals Errors in Completed I-9 Form

2022-06-24

I am planning to audit our completed I-9 forms. What do I do if I find errors? (Read More)...

(Read More)

California Employers Face Minimum Wage Increases This July 1

2022-06-23

With the Consumer Price Index recently showing the largest spike in 30 years, California employers need to brace themselves and prepare for the minimum-wage hikes going into effect in several cities across the state on July 1, 2022. (Read More)...

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CalSavers Small Business Deadline One Week Away

2022-06-23

Small businesses with five or more employees that don’t offer a qualified retirement plan have only one more week to register with CalSavers, a retirement savings program for private-sector workers. (Read More)...

(Read More)

CDPH Alters Cal/OSHA COVID-19 ETS Definitions

2022-06-21

On June 8, 2022, the California Department of Public Heath (CDPH) issued an order updating definitions for “close contact” and “infectious period” as they relate to the CDPH isolation and quarantine requirements. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Medical Documentation Requirements for Disability Leaves

2022-06-17

If an employee requests a leave of absence as an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act, can I require medical documentation from their health care provider? If so, how much time does the employee have to provide me with the documentation? (Read More)...

(Read More)

Court Cases Show Mistakes to Avoid in ADA Compliance

2022-06-16

Staying compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) presents various challenges for employers, and these challenges have only increased in the last two years during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Read More)...

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Viking Cruises to a Win for California Employers: Supreme Court Closes PAGA’s Backdoor to Avoid Arbitration Agreements (For Now)

2022-06-16

Employers can enforce arbitration agreements in California to the extent they require an employee to arbitrate individual claims under the state’s Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA), according to an 8 to 1 SCOTUS ruling that was issued today. The Court also held that once the employee’s individual claims under PAGA are compelled to arbitration, the employee would not have standing to bring a representative claim under PAGA on behalf of other aggrieved employees. However, the Court left open the possibility that the California Legislature could revise PAGA to allow an employee to bring representative claims in Court, even if the employee does not share any claims with the other employees they seek to represent. Employers have been clamoring for this ruling, as this decision marks the end of an eight-year battle to treat agreements to arbitrate representative actions in the same manner as waivers of class and collective actions. You should be prepared to make immediate adjustments to your alternative dispute resolution agreements, assess any existing representative litigation to capitalize on this hard-fought relief from PAGA’s abuses, and prepare for potential legislative changes to PAGA. Here’s what you need to know about the ruling....

(Read More)

Reminder: PCORI Fee Is Due Aug. 1 for Self-Insured Health Plans

2022-06-16

At the end of last year, the IRS raised the fee that insurers or sponsors of self-insured health plans pay annually to fund the federal Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) trust fund. The new fee is $2.79 per covered person, with other fees described below. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Learn to Better Manage Your Time

2022-06-15

"Busy does not equal results," admonished Julie D. Burch during her laughter-filled, standing-room-only concurrent session at the SHRM Annual Conference & Expo 2022 in New Orleans on June 13. (Read More)...

(Read More)

California Bill Would Require Pay Range in Job Ads

2022-06-15

Aproposed bill in California would make pay more transparent. Under the bill, employers with 15 or more employees would have to include pay range in all of their job postings and publicly report how much certain groups of employees are paid. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Employee Resource Groups Create a Sense of Belonging, Foster Engagement

2022-06-12

Human resources teams that support employee resource groups (ERGs) gain partners in fostering employee engagement. These groups can also help counter the spike in employee turnover known as the Great Resignation, said Christine Michel Carter, an author and corporate advisor, during a June 12 workshop at the SHRM Annual Conference & Expo 2022 in New Orleans. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Quick Overview of May 6 Version of Emergency COVID Standards

2022-06-10

The Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) has adopted the third iteration of the Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS) for the COVID-19 pandemic. These requirements went into effect on May 6, 2022 and are effective through December 31, 2022. (Read More)...

(Read More)

A Look at Drug Testing, Privacy Rights, Last Chance Agreements

2022-06-09

My employee provided a doctor’s note for recent time off that included information that he was out due to “cocaine poisoning.” With this information, can we require the employee to sign a last chance agreement and submit to weekly drug testing? (Read More)...

(Read More)

IRS Raises Standard Mileage Rate for Final Half of 2022

2022-06-09

Citing soaring gas prices, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on June 9 announced an increase in the optional standard mileage rate for the final six months of 2022. (Read More)...

(Read More)

How to Keep Hiring Managers From Asking Inappropriate Interview Questions

2022-06-08

Aformer manager for Google and Meta bragged on social media about openly discriminating against female job applicants. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Circuit Court Clarifies Employer Burdens in Religious Accommodation Cases

2022-06-03

Religious accommodation cases continue to vex employers. Especially since the rise of COVID-19, employers have had to face a rising tide of employee claims that their religious beliefs entitle them to an exemption from otherwise applicable workplace rules. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Court Overturns California Law Requiring Women on Boards of Directors

2022-06-01

Arecent ruling in Los Angeles Superior Court overturned California's law requiring companies to include women on their boards of directors. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Unlawful to Deduct an Outstanding Loan from Employee’s Final Pay

2022-05-31

What can an employer do when an employee leaves a company but has an outstanding loan owed to the company? Can the amount of the outstanding loan be taken out of the employee’s final pay? (Read More)...

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How Some Employers Are Addressing Weight Discrimination

2022-05-31

When Emma Gordon was working as an intern, she was on medication for an illness she was experiencing at the time. The medication caused a notable weight gain. (Read More)...

(Read More)

California: Obligations of an Employee Taking Leave

2022-05-29

Under both the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), an employee is required to provide at least 30 days' notice of the need for leave when the need for leave is foreseeable. When the need for leave is not foreseeable, no amount of advance notice is required. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Moonlighting OK, But Not Job Performance/Attendance Issues

2022-05-27

Can California employers require employees to submit written notification/disclosure that they have a second job? (Read More)...

(Read More)

How to Write a Great HR Cover Letter

2022-05-26

While you might read hundreds (or thousands) of cover letters as part of your HR job, it can be a challenge to write one of your own. (Read More)...

(Read More)

How to Stop Employees from Hoarding Knowledge

2022-05-24

In a learning economy where knowledge is constantly evolving, it's important for everyone in an organization to share what they know and learn from each other to ensure their own growth—not to mention the survival and success of the organization. (Read More)...

(Read More)

California Supreme Court Says Payments for Missed Breaks are “Wages”: A 3-Step Action Plan for Employers

2022-05-24

The California Supreme Court ruled yesterday that any premiums paid to employees who are unable to take a full and timely meal or rest period should be considered “wages,” which not only triggers two key obligations on the part of California employers but also reemphasizes the importance of meal and rest break compliance. (Read More)...

(Read More)

A Look at Drug Testing, Privacy Rights and Last Chance Agreements

2022-05-20

My employee provided a doctor’s note for recent time off that included information that he was out due to “cocaine poisoning.” With this information, can we require the employee to sign a last chance agreement and submit to weekly drug testing? (Read More)...

(Read More)

Nothing Escapes Inflation, Including California’s Minimum Wage

2022-05-18

California’s minimum wage currently is double its federal counterpart.  And, it’s going to keep climbing. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Employment Gaps: The Struggle of Re-Entering the Workforce

2022-05-17

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs recently hosted a virtual roundtable to discuss challenges workers face when re-entering the workforce after periods of unemployment. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Be Aware of Legal Risks with Post-Roe Abortion Benefits

2022-05-16

With the news that the U.S. Supreme Court may overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that legalized abortion throughout the U.S., some employers have begun revising their health benefits to cover travel expenses for out-of-state medical procedures, including abortions, that are not available locally. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Unlawful to Deduct an Outstanding Loan from Employee’s Final Pay

2022-05-13

What can an employer do when an employee leaves a company but has an outstanding loan owed to the company? Can the amount of the outstanding loan be taken out of the employee’s final pay? (Read More)...

(Read More)

EEOC Will Allow Late Filings of EEO-1s Until June 21

2022-05-13

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has stated that it will allow late filing of EEO-1 Reports, which are due May 17, until June 21. We've gathered articles on the news from SHRM Online and other outlets. (Read More)...

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Free White Paper: Employee Handbooks Are Essential

2022-05-12

Unbeknownst to some, California law doesn’t require employers to have an employee handbook. But the benefits of creating and maintaining an employee handbook are many — not only for employees, but also for employers themselves. (Read More)...

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Will the Pandemic’s Missing Workers Ever Return to the Labor Force?

2022-05-11

Official unemployment is near a historic low while job openings have surged to record highs, yet a massive gap remains between the demand for talent and the supply of workers in the labor market. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Guidance on Handling Roe v. Wade Discussions in the Workplace

2022-05-10

News about abortion rights has dominated headlines in recent days after Politico reported that the U.S. Supreme Court is poised to overturn Roe v. Wade, a landmark 1973 decision that legalized abortion nationwide. (Read More)...

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Why Are Companies Hiring More Multilingual Workers?

2022-05-09

Interacting with clients and customers around the world has become part of doing business at many companies, including small operations with just a few employees. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Final Wages to Fired Employee Should Include Reporting Time Pay

2022-05-06

Late during the shift one afternoon, I discovered one of the employees had been stealing from the company. I immediately sent him home. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Employees Want Voluntary Benefits but Don’t Always Understand Them

2022-05-04

New survey results show that more U.S. employers are offering voluntary benefits and more workers are selecting them during the open enrollment cycle for 2022. Other research, however, found that employees still misunderstand voluntary benefits and don't take full advantage of them. (Read More)...

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Review Expense Reimbursement Policies for Relevance to Remote Work

2022-05-04

The unexpected and rapid growth of remote workers since 2020 has changed the workplace permanently. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Eligible California Employers with 5 or More Employees Must Comply with CalSavers Retirement Savings Trust Act by June 30, 2022

2022-05-03

California law requires that employers doing business in California that do not offer a 401(k) plan must register under the CalSavers Retirement Program (the “CalSavers Program” or “Program”) and provide employee census information in order for CalSavers to automatically enroll eligible employees in a retirement savings program. (Read More)...

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Take Three: Cal/OSHA Revises COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS) for Third Time

2022-05-02

On April 21, 2022, the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (OSHSB) approved a third readoption of the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS) to replace the current version, which is set to expire on May 6, 2022. (Read More)...

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Viewpoint: Top 10 Reasons Why Employees Sue Their Employers

2022-05-02

Many employment lawsuits could be prevented if employers focused on certain aspects of their workplace environment and recognized employee warning signs. (Read More)...

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10 Steps to Mental Health Wellness for Your Employees

2022-05-02

The seemingly never-ending pandemic has affected all aspects of the workplace, with employee mental health and well-being becoming one of the top employee-related issues you need to deal with on a daily basis. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Review Expense Reimbursement Policies for Relevance to Remote Work

2022-04-29

When the pandemic started, we sent many of our employees home to work remotely. Should we have a policy regarding reimbursement of their expenses? (Read More)...

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IRS Announces Spike in 2023 Limits for HSAs and High-Deductible Health Plans

2022-04-29

Health savings account (HSA) contribution limits for 2023 are going up significantly in response to the recent inflation surge, the IRS announced April 29, giving employers that sponsor high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) plenty of time to prepare for open enrollment season later this year. (Read More)...

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ADA Protects Workers in Treatment and Recovery for Opioid Use

2022-04-26

Recent federal guidance reminds employers that workers with opioid use disorder (OUD) who are in treatment or recovery are protected from employment discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). (Read More)...

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The Challenges of Recruiting Recruiters

2022-04-26

Employers have been in a hiring frenzy since the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic stabilized in 2021. The U.S. unemployment rate sits at 3.6 percent, the lowest rate since right before the pandemic began, while job openings are at record highs. (Read More)...

(Read More)

ICE Extends I-9 Flexibility for Remote Workers

2022-04-26

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has extended its temporary policy allowing employers to inspect Form I-9 documents virtually through Oct. 31. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Is the 32-Hour Workweek Coming to California?

2022-04-25

Lawmakers in the Golden State are considering a bill that would require businesses with more than 500 employees to shift to a 32-hour workweek and pay overtime premiums for excess hours—but does the bill have a chance of becoming law? (Read More)...

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Avoid Surprises by Checking in with Employee During Family Leave

2022-04-22

Employers are not required to provide written notification under either the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or California Family Rights Act (CFRA) at the end of an employee’s family leave. (Read More)...

(Read More)

OSHA Announces Program to Protect Workers from Heat Hazards

2022-04-20

Employers should prepare for heat-related workplace inspections from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) under a new program designed to protect indoor and outdoor workers from heat illness and injuries. (Read More)...

(Read More)

California Privacy Rights Act for Employers: Developing and Posting a Privacy Policy for Human Resources Data

2022-04-19

The California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA), which goes into effect January 1, 2023, will impose specific notice obligations on the part of the employer. (Read More)...

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Viewpoint: Common FMLA Missteps—Don’t Be 'That Guy'

2022-04-19

How is managing leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) like baseball? The team can be undone by rookie mistakes and unforced errors. (Read More)...

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How to Resolve a Pay Dispute

2022-04-15

Errors happen, even with payroll, but speed is of the essence in correcting them to avoid further eroding worker trust and risking litigation. (Read More)...

(Read More)

California Privacy Rights Act for Employers: Vendor Contracting Requirements

2022-04-14

The impending January 1, 2023 effective date of the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) has created a lengthy list of compliance tasks for human resources (HR) departments. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Spice Up Routine Benefits Offerings to Attract and Keep Talent

2022-04-14

Employers need to offer "creative and exciting benefits packages to recruit new employees and retain existing workers," said Jeanne J. Sutton, a financial benefits advisor at Bowling Green, Ky.-based consultancy Strategic Retirement Partners, which has clients nationwide. (Read More)...

(Read More)

TALENT ACQUISITION 6 Tips for Recruiters to Self-Motivate During Tough Times

2022-04-14

Recruiting is hard right now. The labor market is hypercompetitive, open requisitions have skyrocketed, and recruiting resources have not been fully restored from the ravages of the pandemic. (Read More)...

(Read More)

As Inflation Hits 8.5%, Workers Expect Bigger Raises

2022-04-12

Adding more pressure on employers to raise wages, consumer prices rose 8.5 percent year over year in March, the highest inflation rate since 1981, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported on April 12. The monthly increase from February to March was 1.2 percent. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Fair Pay Initiative Moves Closer to Qualifying for November Ballot

2022-04-08

The effort to stop frivolous lawsuits against employers by replacing the state’s Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) continues to advance. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Standards Board to Consider Update to Required First-Aid Kit Contents

2022-04-08

I hear that the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (Board) will be considering a revision to the requirement to obtain a physician’s approval for the items to include in a job site first-aid kit. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Cal/OSHA Publishes a Draft Readoption ETS that Eliminates Vaccination Status Distinctions and Relaxes Testing Methods, Yet Muddies Quarantine Standards

2022-04-07

On April 6, 2022, Cal/OSHA issued a draft COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) for readoption to replace the current version, which expires on May 5, 2022. The readopted ETS would be the fourth version of the ETS, which first went into effect on November 30, 2020. (Read More)...

(Read More)

California Court Blocks Board Diversity Law

2022-04-05

ALos Angeles court recently struck down a law that requires publicly traded corporations headquartered in California to have board members from underrepresented communities.  (Read More)...

(Read More)

Two Developments Could Impact California’s Proposed Regulations Governing AI and Automated Decision-making

2022-04-04

Two noteworthy developments have occurred since the California Fair Employment & Housing Council released draft revisions to the state’s employment non-discrimination laws on March 15, 2022 that relate to the nascent law surrounding the use of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other data-driven statistical processes to automate decision-making in the employment context.  (Read More)...

(Read More)

4 California Wage and Hour Rulings for Employers to Note

2022-04-04

Many HR professionals in the Golden State have spent the last few years adapting to changes prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic and complying with related workplace orders. So, they may have missed other key employment law developments. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Stop Employees from ‘Mask Shaming’ Colleagues

2022-04-04

Employers have observed an increasing lack of respect in the workplace, including so-called mask shaming—insulting colleagues who, out of concern over COVID-19, continue to wear masks. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Mental Stress Leave: Time with Employer Among Eligibility Factors

2022-04-01

During the past two years, we’ve had several employees claiming they are dealing with depression and anxiety/stress. Can they file for leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) for these claims? (Read More)...

(Read More)

Prepare for Health Care Price Transparency Rules Taking Effect Soon

2022-04-01

New requirements for employer-sponsored health plans to report price information for in-network costs to plan participants are set to take effect shortly. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Marijuana Laws and the 2022 Workplace

2022-03-31

Growing acceptance of marijuana use in recent years has led to the proliferation of state laws legalizing medical and recreational cannabis consumption, as well as a push for employment protections for off-duty use. (Read More)...

(Read More)

EEOC Continues to Update COVID-19-Related Practical Guidance

2022-03-30

Throughout the pandemic, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has focused on answering key employer questions and providing hands-on guidance about the evolving COVID-19 issues employers face. (Read More)...

(Read More)

How to Push Back on Religious Accommodation Requests

2022-03-30

Employers can push back—gently—on religious accommodation requests and don't have to grant requests that would result in an undue hardship, which is much easier for employers to show for religious accommodation requests than disability accommodation requests. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Form I-9 Alert: Policy Allowing Expired Documents Scheduled to End

2022-03-28

Beginning May 1, employers will no longer be able to accept expired identity documents when verifying an employee's work eligibility on Form I-9. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Manufacturers Can E-Distribute Retirement Plan Documents to Deskless Workers

2022-03-28

Retirement plan disclosures required by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) may be delivered more widely by electronic media under the Department of Labor's (DOL's) 2020 electronic distribution regulation. (Read More)...

(Read More)

Harassment Outside of Work? Employer Still Must Respond to Complaint

2022-03-25

One of my supervisors just reported to me that they received complaints about harassment from a coworker but did not report them to us because the conduct occurred after work hours and the employees did not want to file “formal” complaints. Is there anything more we have to do at this point? (Read More)...

(Read More)

Employees Want Additional Opportunities for Career, Skills Development

2022-03-24

The Great Resignation of the past two years has HR departments striving for solutions to retain and recruit key workers. Some are finding that the way to solve this challenge is to start by improving the employee experience—specifically, their career and skills development. (Read More)...

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Is an Emoji Worth a Thousand Words? The Impact of Emojis in the Workplace

2022-03-24

Work does not always occur within the physical confines of a workplace.  Indeed, due to the interconnectivity of today’s world, work often takes place in the digital space, where employees regularly use pictorial icons and images known as emojis and emoticons to express themselves. (Read More)...

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Making Sure Unlimited PTO Is Done Right

2022-03-24

In an era of high stress, burnout and turnover, it's important for employees to achieve the right balance between work demands and personal pursuits. They need, after all, to recharge once in a while. (Read More)...

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DOL Warns 401(k) Plans Against Allowing Crypto Investments

2022-03-22

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) is warning 401(k) plan fiduciaries to "exercise extreme care" before considering whether to include a cryptocurrency option in a plan investment menu. (Read More)...

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Bill Seeks to Alleviate the Slowdown of Criminal Background Checks in California

2022-03-21

Background check industry groups have mounted a full-court press to remedy the recent slowdown in criminal record searches in California state courts caused by last year’s court of appeal decision in All of Us or None v. Hamrick. (Read More)...

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Absence Due to Workers’ Comp Injury May Qualify for Family Leave

2022-03-18

I have an employee who was injured at work, and his doctor put him on leave for the next three months. The employee filed for workers’ compensation benefits, so I know his job is protected by the workers’ comp laws, but I want to know if his leave is also covered by the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or California Family Rights Act (CFRA)? (Read More)...

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California DFEH Releases 2021 Pay Data Report Findings

2022-03-16

On Equal Pay Day —roughly two and a half weeks before Pay Data Reports for 2021 are due to the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) — the agency released results from the 2021 Pay Data Reports (on 2020 data), showing that pay disparities among genders and certain racial/ethnic groups remain. (Read More)...

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What to Do When Employee Video Records Workplace Accident

2022-03-11

An employee used his mobile phone to film a co-worker lying in a pool of blood shortly after a workplace accident. This employee then posted the video on his personal social media account with no comments other than an exclamation point. What are my options? (Read More)...

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When Might an Employer Question FMLA Certification?

2022-03-11

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) certification of a serious health condition must be complete and sufficient, but sometimes it's neither. Employers rarely take a hard line but instead ask employees to provide more information to finish out the certification. (Read More)...

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DOL Issues Guidance on Prohibited Retaliation Under FLSA and FMLA

2022-03-11

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released guidance on March 10 that gave specific examples of what constitutes unlawful retaliation under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and visa programs. (Read More)...

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DOL Proposes Changing Definition of ‘Prevailing Wage’ Under Davis-Bacon Act

2022-03-11

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) proposed returning the definition of "prevailing wage" under the Davis-Bacon Act to one last used nearly 40 years ago, dismissing arguments made when the definition was changed during the Reagan administration that the old definition contributed to inflation. (Read More)...

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Updated California Supplemental Paid Sick Leave FAQs Answer Some Big Questions

2022-03-11

California’s Labor Commissioner has updated its FAQs concerning 2022 COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave (CPSL), answering some of employers’ more pressing questions about how this year’s more unique law operates. The answers are welcome news to many. (Read More)...

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Yale's Settlement of Wellness Lawsuit Shows Risks of Health-Screening Incentives

2022-03-10

With new regulations on incentive-based wellness programs still in limbo, offering more than minimal incentives to participate in activities such as health screenings—or imposing more than minimal penalties for not participating—could be risky. (Read More)...

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Daylight Saving Time (DST) Starts Sunday, March 13

2022-03-09

It’s time, yet again, to spring forward. This Sunday, March 13, marks the start of Daylight Saving Time (DST) in 2022. Each year, DST comes with some pros and cons — and some things of which employers should be mindful. (Read More)...

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10 Classic Interview Questions and the Answers You Hope to Hear

2022-03-08

In the current hiring market, when a day's delay can mean the difference between attracting a great candidate and missing out, it can be tempting to extend offers to applicants just because they look good on paper. (Read More)...

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New Federal Law Prohibits Forced Arbitration of Sexual Harassment, Assault Claims

2022-03-07

On March 3, 2022, President Biden signed into law the Ending Forced Arbitration of Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Act of 2021  (the Act), which amends the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) to make pre-dispute arbitration agreements and class action waivers invalid and unenforceable for claims of sexual harassment or sexual assault. (Read More)...

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EEOC Updates Guidance on Religious Accommodations for COVID-19 Vaccines

2022-03-07

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently answered more questions from employers on how to handle religious objections to COVID-19 vaccinations and requests for accommodation. (Read More)...

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Lower Base Period Wages Can Affect Expected Disability Benefits

2022-03-04

A fairly new employee is out on a medical leave and receiving state disability insurance, but the weekly benefit she’s getting is far less than the 60% I thought an employee was entitled to. Why is that? (Read More)...

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Remote Work Reminder: Keep Your Remote Work Policy Up to Date

2022-03-03

Prior to 2020, the number of employees working remotely or in a “hybrid” manner — a combination of in-office and remote work — was steadily on the rise. (Read More)...

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How to Manage Changing COVID-19 Workplace Safety Obligations

2022-03-01

Employers may be tempted to lift their pandemic-related safety requirements as federal and state authorities ease masking and other COVID-19 rules. But employers should note that they have ongoing obligations to protect the health and safety of their workers. (Read More)...

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Governor Lifts California Workplace Mask Requirement

2022-03-01

Starting today, masks will no longer be required for most unvaccinated workers indoors. (Read More)...

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Things to Consider When Deciding on Disability Leave Extension

2022-02-28

We have an employee who has been out on disability for almost a year, but we can’t let him go because he’s on disability. What are our options? (Read More)...

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Shields Up: 10 Proactive Steps Employers Can Take to Prevent Russian Cybersecurity Attacks

2022-02-24

Tensions have been heightening in the Russia-Ukraine crisis given the Russian military invasion that took place late last night – and while this conflict seems to be thousands of miles away, its effects on your business could ripple closer than you may think. (Read More)...

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