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Archive for April 2018

For Employer, Paid Administrative Leave Is Not Always A Safe Harbor

A recent ruling from the U.S. District Court may surprise employers who order paid administrative leave for employees being investigated. The lesson of the case is that, depending on circumstances, paid administrative leave might constitute a materially adverse employment action sufficient to prove an unlawful retaliation claim against the employer. Judge Rya W. Zobel issued…

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DOL Issues Opinion Letter On What Constitutes Work Time When Employees Travel

On April 12, 2018, the US Department of Labor’s Wage & Hour Division (WHD), issued an opinion letter, FLSA2018-18, responding to an employer’s request for guidance concerning its obligation to compensate employee travel-time under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The WHD begins the opinion letter by re-affirming several basic principles: Compensable time generally does not…

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Is ‘I’ve Changed Meds’ an Accommodation Request?

An employee who’s questioned about fighting with co-workers, sudden tardiness or a dip in performance may explain, “I’ve changed medications. Even an assertion this simple should be treated as a notice from the worker that a reasonable accommodation might be needed under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). A worker doesn’t have to use any…

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Who Are You?: The Legal Implications of Employee Personality Testing

Many employers require employees and applicants to take personality testing (think Meyers-Briggs). Others are seriously considering adding this as a component of their hiring and employee engagement efforts. Companies want to get a sense of an individual’s opinions, attitudes, feelings, motivations, preferences, interests, emotional makeup, and style of interacting with others. This information, some believe,…

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How Many Extensions of a Medical Leave Must An Employer Grant Under The ADA Or FEHA Before It Says “Enough is Enough”?

Managing employees on medical leave of absence is one of the most vexing human resource problems a company must manage. Not only must the company ensure compliance with any statutorily mandated leaves that may be applicable, such as FMLA or CFRA, it must also consider the medical leave process in the context of disability discrimination…

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Five Tips For Handling Tricky Religious Accommodations

When an employee’s religious beliefs conflict with a workplace policy, you need to consider whether a reasonable accommodation can be made, without creating an undue hardship. Many times, these religious accommodations present challenging issues for supervisors and HR professionals, but these five tips can help ease the struggle. Tip #1: Consider each request individually When…

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EEOC Focuses on Preventing Workplace Harassment

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) had a busy year in 2017 and was focused in part on creating programs to prevent workplace harassment and disability discrimination. “The commission believes a concerted effort to promote holistic prevention programs, including training and outreach, will greatly deter future violations,” the agency stated in its latest strategic enforcement…

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