Employment Law Blog

News, trends and analysis in employment law and HR

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Photo of Kara Craig
Dec 20 2018
Q&AHarassment & DiscriminationPrivacy & Confidentiality  

Q&A: Know how to handle the aftermath of a harassment investigation

Question: I just completed a harassment investigation. We verified that harassment occurred and terminated the harasser. Everyone seems to know what happened and tensions are high in our small office. What else can I do? 

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Photo of Jon Benson
Dec 17 2018
Q&AEmployee BenefitsHarassment & DiscriminationLabor RelationsWage and Hour  

Q&A: No-fault attendance policies must allow many exceptions

Question: We have a “no fault” attendance policy which assigns points for absences, tardies, and early departures. Employees are disciplined and eventually terminated if they reach a certain number of points. We know we have to allow exceptions for legally protected time off, but what if it’s unclear whether an absence is protected?  

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Photo of Jackie Marks
Dec 14 2018
Harassment & Discrimination  

Employer’s failure to stop harassment by customer leads to $250,000 jury award

A federal appeals court confirmed a jury award of $250,000 against a grocery store whose female employee was stalked by a male customer at work. The employer ordered the customer to avoid the employee, but failed to ensure the customer complied. For the next 13 months, the customer continued following the…

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Photo of Diane Buisman
Nov 02 2018

Q&A: Pay equity analysis not a quick fix

Question: We’re concerned about new state laws on equal pay, and we don’t know where to start with a pay equity analysis. How do we get a handle on our potential exposure?

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Photo of Jackie Marks
Aug 22 2018
Q&ADisabilityDrug and AlcoholHiringTermination & Resignation  

Q&A: Use MRO to verify whether prescription caused positive drug test

Question: We require all new hires to pass a pre-employment drug test. Do we have to use the same process we use for our random, reasonable suspicion, and post-accident drug testing and send positive test results to a medical review officer (MRO)? Or, can we simply ask potential new hires for a list of medications they have been prescribed?

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Photo of Kara Craig
Aug 17 2018
Q&ADisabilityLeave LawsSafety and Health  

Q&A: No FMLA notice required unless employee asks for time off

Question: I have a production employee who says that standing for eight hours a day is causing him pain. He doesn’t want to go on any type of leave and says he’d rather just suffer through it. We are covered by the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). What do I do?

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Photo of Jodi Slavik
Aug 17 2018
Leave Laws  

Phase 1 of Washington State Paid Family Leave rules released

The Washington Employment Security Department (ESD) is in the process of rulemaking for Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave (WPFML). As we previously reported, WPFML provides leave benefits starting in 2020, with tax assessments on employees and employers beginning January 1, 2019. Phase 1 Complete ESD has divided rulemaking into six phases.…

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Photo of Jodi Slavik
Aug 10 2018

Q&A: Respond quickly and thoughtfully to social media posts

Question: I just found out that an employee posted a hateful comment toward immigrants on her personal Facebook page. We’re afraid of the bad PR impact on our business. Can we fire her for violation of our policy against discrimination?

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Aug 06 2018
Q&ADisabilityHarassment & DiscriminationSafety and Health  

Q&A: “100-percent healed” return-to-work policy violates ADA

Question: To avoid workplace injuries, we require all employees to be 100-percent healed without any medical restrictions before they return to work after an illness or injury. We think this is an important policy to protect employee safety, but recently heard it might be unlawful discrimination. Is it?

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Jul 10 2018
Workers’ Comp  

It’s time for retro refund checks!

Over the past few weeks Vigilant safety professionals delivered $4.5m in retro refund checks to Washington manufacturers in our workers' comp retro group.   Want in on the savings? Learn more about Vigilant's Retro Group today. Vigilant Retro Participant for 19 years, Hampton Affliates receives their refund check. Pictured: Dave Salmon of Hampton Affiliates   More Than Just a…

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