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Top employment issues for states in 2009: Part 2
(February 20 , 2009)
Last week, we discussed four employment law issues state legislatures will be grappling with in 2009 -- layoff notification laws, immigration, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and it's state equivalents, and unemployment benefits. This week, we'll discuss four more - family and medical leave, workplace discrimination, minimum wage, and occupational safety. As with last week's topics, some issues likely to be seen on state legislative agendas in 2009 will depend on the outcome of key federal issues. Read more

HR Tip of the Week
Are your policies compliant with the new FMLA regulations?
(February 20 , 2009)
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) has been revised, and the regulations went into effect in January 2009. Time for a checkup of your company's policies. Employment law attorney Mike Maslanka gives employers they need to ask themselves to see if their policies measure up to the new FMLA regulation requirements. Read more

Mental Health Parity Act effective date delayed
(February 20 , 2009)
Congress deferred the effective date of the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 to January 2010 for plans that otherwise would have been covered in 2009. The Act amends the Employee Retirement Income Security Act and the Public Health Service Act to prohibit employers' health plans from imposing any caps or limitations on mental health treatment or substance use disorder benefits that aren't applied to medical and surgical benefits. Read more

Employers in the Courtroom
Laid-off workers win some lawsuits, lose some
(December 30, 2008)
When a company downsizes, it can feel like a civil war, with employees worried about whether they will be next on the chopping block. Such times can be hazardous for employers, which may find themselves tiptoeing through a minefield of explosive discrimination lawsuits. In the case below, recently decided by the Tenth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, find out which employment discrimination claims survive and which don't in this harrowing true tale of human drama and disappointment. Read more

How can employers avoid legal issues when firing employees?
Q: Everywhere you turn right now, you hear bad news about the economy. As a small-business owner, I'm afraid I'll have to resort to letting go of several hourly employees. Like other employers, I've dealt with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charges from employees, and I have many employees who belong to protected classes or are on Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave. I know that both employers and employees are on edge right now, so I want to make sure that I handle any discharges correctly, especially given the factors I named. Could you provide some helpful tips? Read more


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