Month: December 2016

Sick Leave Laws

Sick Leave

There is no federal law requiring employers to provide employees paid sick leave — a short-term salary-continuation program for employees absent because of a non-job-related illness or injury — but most employers do provide it as an important employee benefit.

Employers establishing or amending a sick leave policy should consider other disability income policies, how unused sick leave should be addressed, liability for sick leave, and general discrimination issues.

When adopting a policy, employers must be sure that it fully complies with federal or state family/medical leave laws, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and any other applicable laws. There are many alternatives to standard sick leave policies, including flexible leave policies, no-fault attendance policies, leave donation programs, and paid-time-off banks.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

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Sexual Harassment at Work: Employers Can Be Held Liable for Employee’s Acts

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Harassment in the workplace is a form of employment discrimination that violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the laws in many states.

Keep in mind that employers can be held liable for harassment by supervisors, coworkers, and non-employees such as customers or vendors.

Employers should have strong policies against sexual harassment and clear procedures for reporting harassment. Sexual harassment training for supervisors and employees should include information on what sexual harassment is, how to prevent it, and how to report harassment at work.

Most states have laws prohibiting sexual harassment in the workplace. Some states, including California, Connecticut, and Maine, require sexual harassment training for supervisors. Massachusetts requires employers to adopt a policy against sexual harassment and to give each employee a written copy.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Sex Discrimination is a Serious Prohibition

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Federal fair employment laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), prohibit employment practices that discriminate on the basis of sex. Keep in mind that Title VII covers all public employers and private employers with 15 or more employees.

The law prohibits sex-based discrimination in hiring, advancement, or any other terms or conditions of employment.

Sex discrimination includes discrimination based on maternity and pregnancy; and sexual harassment is considered a form of sex discrimination.

The EEOC has ruled that discrimination based on gender identity is also sex discrimination. Employers can avoid sex discrimination claims by becoming aware of the risks, developing strong policies against discrimination, training employees, and responding in a timely and effective manner when complaints are made.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

What Are Severance Benefits?

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Severance benefits are payments made to employees upon termination of employment caused by events that are beyond their control, such as workforce reductions, plant closings, company takeovers, and mergers.

Severance benefits are sometimes offered to encourage early retirement or voluntary resignation, or to discourage terminated employees from suing an employer.

Severance benefits are not required by federal law and are required only by a handful of states. However, most companies offer severance pay.

The payments themselves may be a one-time occurrence or spread over a period of time. These benefits are usually calculated by the employee’s length of service with the company (e.g., one week of severance pay given for every year employed with the company).

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

What is Employee Termination and How is it Considered Termination?

What is Employee Termination and How is it Considered Termination.jpg

In general, employment is considered to be at will, which means either the employee or the employer may terminate the employment relationship at any time and for ANY reason (with of course some exceptions discussed below).

If there is an employment contract, either express or implied, that limits the employer’s right to terminate employment, the employer must comply with the requirements of the contract. Contracts may include collective bargaining agreements, individual employment agreements, and employee handbooks.

In addition, there are state and federal laws that limit an employer’s right to terminate an employee where the reason for the termination is discriminatory or in retaliation for the employee exercising particular rights.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

How is Your Religion Protected as an Employee?

how-is-your-religion-protected-as-an-employee

Federal law under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 makes it illegal for an employer of 15 or more employees to discriminate against applicants or employees on the basis of religion.

Even more important, covered employers must provide reasonable accommodation for an employee’s religious beliefs or practices.

Harassment in the workplace based on an employee’s religious beliefs is also prohibited.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Hiring Practices to Prevent Workplace Discrimination

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Good hiring practices can eliminate many legal risks, reduce costs, increase productivity, and improve morale.

Making the wrong hiring decision or a decision based on race, sex, or gender, on the other hand, can result in fines, turnover, duplicative training, missed opportunities, and lost customers.

In addition, hiring an individual who is not a good match for a position or good fit in a company eventually leads to employment termination. Every termination exposes the company to the risk of a wrongful termination lawsuit or a discrimination claim.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

Are You Being Discriminated By Your Race?

are-you-being-discriminated-by-your-race

The federal Equal Employment Opportunity law, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, makes it illegal for all public employers and private employers of 15 or more employees to discriminate against applicants or employees based on race.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued enforcement guidance to assist employers to prevent this form of discrimination and has an initiative known as “E-RACE” to strengthen enforcement of Title VII.

Another federal law, Section 1981 of the Civil Rights Act of 1866, prohibits public and private employers from discriminating on the basis of race.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/

How is Personal Leave Defined for Employees?

how-is-personal-leave-defined-for-employees

“Personal leave” refers to short-term absences for reasons other than illness, such as taking a child to a physician, school appointments, time to run errands, and other various reasons.

No federal law requires employers to provide paid or unpaid personal days, but many employers do provide this benefit.

In several states , there are leaves called “small necessities leave” laws that require that leave be given for many of the same reasons employees use personal leave. A personal day policy should be part of an overall leave policy which may include some of the latest trends including flexible work time and leave donation programs.

David Payab, Esq. from The Law Offices of Payab & Associates can be reached @ (800) 401-4466 or by visiting http://payablaw.com/