Monthly Archives: July 2009

WAGE AND HOUR TRAP

The administrative exemption creates one of the most difficult distinctions in the wage and hour area. Whether somebody works in an “administrative capacity” has a lot to do with whether they work “in the business” or “on the business.” A telling case was recently decided in the Northern District of West Virginia, Desmond v. PNGI… Read more »

COBRA INVOLUNTARY TERMINATION DEFINED

Many employers have grappled with defining “involuntary termination” under COBRA. According to a recent IRS bulletin, here are the standards. Note: These questions apply solely for purposes of determining whether there is an involuntary termination under section 3001 of ARRA (including new Code sections added by section 3001 of ARRA — but not for any… Read more »

HR LAUGHS

For many years, Dilbert owned the HR stage. Now the TV show The Office has taken over. You can see their employee handbook, as well as hilarious pictures of offices around the country. For a few minutes of amusement, go to www.nbc.com/office.

ENGLISH-ONLY POLICIES MUST BE TAILORED NARROWLY

Blanket English-only policies are often found to be discriminatory. A case in point is the recent settlement agreement between the EEOC and an employer that enforced an English-only rule solely against Hispanics. In EEOC v. Royalwood Care Center LLC, a Spanish-speaking janitor brought a charge of discrimination against the nursing home after he had been… Read more »

ACCOMMODATING DISABILITY SIDE EFFECTS

When an employee requests an accommodation, employers should make two separate determinations: (1) Does the employee have a disability; and (2) Does the employee need the requested accommodation because of a limitation (any limitation) associated with the disability? To see how this applies to “side effects,” the EEOC gives this example: Q: Must an employer… Read more »

THE OBAMA AGENDA

Given the President’s recent appointments to the National Labor Relations Board, Department of Labor, and EEOC, it’s clear that the current administration will be far more employee friendly than any in recent memory. The administration claims that more than 70% of employers are estimated to continue to violate wage and hour laws (especially those related… Read more »

EDITOR’S COLUMN: KEEPING THEM MOTIVATED

Every person is motivated by either pain or pleasure. Today, many employees are motivated to work hard due to the pain that can be associated with losing their jobs. The problem is that fear-based motivation is similar to that of “kick in the butt” theory of motivation — it only works as long as the… Read more »