Kiwis Will Have the Protection of Paid Domestic Violence Leave. What About Floridians?

In April 2019, New Zealand employers will be required to provide victims of domestic violence 10 days of paid leave. The purpose of the paid leave is to allow domestic violence victims to relocate, seek legal help, and address their trauma without fear of losing their income.

In Florida, employers (with 50 or more employees) are required to provide eligible employees (employees who have worked 3 or more months) 3 working days of unpaid domestic or sexual violence leave in any 12-month period. The leave provides the victims with some level of support or flexibility. However, the employer can require the employee to first exhaust all vacation leave, personal leave, and sick leave before taking the 3 days. Additionally, the leave may be paid or unpaid, at the employer’s discretion. To learn more details about the statute’s requirements read our own Lisa Berg’s blog post. Continue Reading

Competing for Workers: Pay More? Or Pay More Frequently?

Unemployment rates are at historic lows and the economy is booming! That’s good news for business, right? Yes…and no. While low unemployment creates more demand for the goods and services offered by companies, it also means that employers will have to compete for an ever-shrinking pool of workers. This leaves employers with two options: offer workers better pay or benefits, or lower hiring standards.

The prospect of lowering hiring standards is sure to give employers heartburn since it can increase training costs and potentially decrease productivity, while increasing worker pay and benefits comes with its own costs that can hurt the bottom line. But a new service being offered to employers and their employees touts itself as providing a lower-cost solution.

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Nothing to Sneeze at: Chemical Sensitivities, Bed Bugs, Zika and Flu Shots

I recently spoke at the SHRM 2018 Annual Conference & Exposition in Chicago. My topic was  “Health Issues are Nothing to Sneeze at: Chemical Sensitivities, Bed Bugs, Zika and Flu Shots.”

SHRM had over 18,000 attendees. It was a great opportunity to discuss some of the legal issues employers face when trying to manage a disease outbreak and other developing issues impacting employee health. Below are my top takeaways for those of you who were not able to attend. Continue Reading

Continuing Work Authorization for Hondurans in Wake of TPS Termination

Following the recent trend, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) terminated the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designation for Honduras.  TPS will terminate for qualifying citizens of Honduras on January 5, 2020.  Hondurans currently in TPS status may continue working in the United States through January 5, 2020, if they re-register. Continue Reading

Covering Summer Interns Under Your Employee Benefit Plans – You Can’t Just Forget About Them

It is prime time of the year for hiring “interns.” They usually are high school, college or even graduate students looking for work experience. Certain interns may be unpaid (the analysis of whether interns must be paid is an important issue but beyond the scope of this blog post). However, many companies provide paid internships. If the interns are paid employees, you may have to cover them under your employee benefit plans.  At a minimum, you can’t just think “oh, those are interns, not real employees; I don’t need to worry about them.” Think again. Continue Reading

Does the EEOC Have Your E-mail Address?

In 2016, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) implemented Phase I of its Digital Charge System for employers to interact with the EEOC thru a Respondent Portal, and to access and respond to a Charge of Discrimination. If a Charge of Discrimination has been filed against your company, the EEOC now e-mails the Notice of Charge of Discrimination to employers and provides a password to access the online portal. When you log in, you can view and download the Charge and add your attorney’s contact information and provide him/her access to the Respondent Portal.  You or your attorney also can respond to a mediation request, change contact information, and upload a position statement. Continue Reading

Hurricane Season is Officially Here – Is Your Company Prepared?

After years of good fortune, the 2017 Hurricane Season severely impacted most of South Florida and the Gulf Coast. Even those of us who suffered little or no property damage probably lost power for at least a few days, and many had no electricity for weeks.  Businesses had difficulty functioning without electricity, internet access, and safe drinking water.  Many workers were simply unable to come to work – difficulty navigating roads full of debris or without working traffic lights, addressing personal needs, or providing childcare because schools were closed.  Let’s hope that 2018 is a quiet hurricane season, but just in case, below are some steps and policies to prepare for the worst. Continue Reading

Top Takeaways from our Annual Tampa Labor & Employment Law Seminar

Our first Annual Tampa Labor & Employment Law Seminar was a success, with more than 70 attendees! We anticipate growing the seminar in the coming years and will use your feedback to determine future topics and content. Thank you to all who attended.

Congratulations to our blog contest winner! You will receive complimentary registration to our 2019 Tampa Seminar.

  • Regina Speed, Palm Pavilion of Clearwater

Congratulations to our Tampa Bay Lightning tickets winner!

  • Rolando Jimenez, Tampa General Hospital

In addition to a number of essential concepts from our Miami Seminar (including the ADA, Sexual Harassment, the FMLA, and I-9s), our Tampa seminar included new insights and additional HR considerations. Continue Reading

“You’re Too Experienced” – Age Discrimination?

In January 2015, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed a federal lawsuit in Miami, Florida, against Seasons 52, a national restaurant chain.  The EEOC alleged Seasons 52 discriminated against older job applicants at 35 of its restaurants nationwide.

During the litigation, the EEOC presented testimony from over 135 applicants that Seasons 52’s hiring managers inquired about their age, and made comments such as, “Seasons 52 girls are younger and fresh,” “We are really looking for someone younger,” and “Seasons 52 hires young people.” The EEOC also alleged that interviewers told rejected applicants they are “too experienced,” which is a seemingly age-neutral statement. Continue Reading

Top Takeaways from our 28th Annual Labor & Employment Law Seminar

Another successful seminar in the books! Thank you to the nearly 400 attendees who came from near and far. We hope you enjoyed the day and that our presentations provided timely, relevant and valuable insight.

Congratulations to our blog contest winners! You will receive complimentary registrations to our 2019 Seminar.

    • Monelle Petgrave, Amadeus North America
    • Dawn Gevat, JCD Sports Group

The top takeaways from each of our sessions: Continue Reading