Employment Law Blog

News, trends and analysis in employment law and HR

Showing posts by Kandis Sells

Photo of Kandis Sells
Oct 23 2019
Q&A  

Q&A: Company using PEO is still liable for legal compliance

Question: We’re thinking about using a professional employer organization (PEO) to handle all of our payroll, hiring, and HR functions. Any legal concerns we should be aware of?   Answer: Yes. Use of a PEO can save you time and allow you to stay focused on your business functions, but be sure you don’t…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Oct 08 2019
 

Q&A: Duty to keep health insurance during workers’ comp is limited

Question: We have an employee out on leave to recover from a workplace injury. Are we supposed to keep her on our health insurance plan?   Answer: It depends on whether the employee’s leave is protected by federal or state leave laws in addition to workers’ compensation. State workers’ comp laws generally don’t require employers to…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Sep 11 2019
Termination & Resignation  

Supervisor in Washington may be individually liable for termination

In Washington, an employee may bring a legal claim against an individual supervisor who participated in an employment termination decision, according to a federal district court. A former middle school principal brought a claim for wrongful discharge in violation of public policy against both the school district and the individual…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Jul 16 2019
Q&AWage and Hour  

Q&A: Be careful how you round employee work hours

Question: We recently changed to a new timekeeping and payroll system, and the new system sometimes rounds down the amount of time an employee worked. Is that legal?   Answer: Probably, but it depends on how much time is rounded down and the state in which the employee works. A recent opinion letter…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Jun 10 2019
Harassment & Discrimination  

New law in Washington protects isolated workers

Washington has a new law intended to prevent the sexual harassment or assault of certain isolated workers. The law applies to every hotel, motel, retail, security guard entity, or “property services contractor” that employs a custodian, security guard, hotel or motel housekeeper, or room-service employee who spends a majority of their working…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
May 17 2019
HiringWage and Hour  

WASHINGTON: Law restricts salary inquiries and requires disclosures

WASHINGTON: Law restricts salary inquiries and requires disclosures Last week, Governor Inslee signed amendments to the Washington Equal Pay and Opportunities Act, which will prohibit employers from asking candidates about their prior salary history, and require employers to provide wage scales or salary ranges to candidates upon request. When this new…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Apr 18 2019
Leave Laws  

Q&A: Are remote employees who are out of state eligible for FMLA?

Question: We have a handful of remote employees who work out of their homes in other states where we don’t have offices or other employees. Can these employees ever be eligible for FMLA since we don’t have 50 or more employees within 75 miles of them? Answer: Yes, they may still be eligible…

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Photo of Kandis Sells
Mar 08 2019
Q&AHarassment & Discrimination  

Q&A: Do we have harassment liability if a workplace relationship is consensual?

Question: An employee in a consensual, romantic relationship with a manager in another department has started complaining about “harassment,” which is really just her coworkers teasing her about the relationship. She’s also complaining that they’re having “problems” in the relationship which is spilling over into hostile treatment at work by the manager. The owner is ready to terminate her for continuing to bring her drama into the workplace. Are there any legal concerns we should consider?

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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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Photo of Kandis Sells
Jul 02 2018
Harassment & DiscriminationHiring  

Q&A: Limit on prior work experience in hiring may be age discrimination

Question: In job postings for our entry-level manager positions, we list the requirements as “3 to 7 years (no more than 7 years) of relevant work experience” to make sure we don’t waste our time interviewing a bunch of overqualified candidates. We recently had an applicant complain that our cap on prior work experience constitutes unlawful age discrimination, but job postings like ours seem really common. It’s okay for us to set a limit on prior experience when we’re hiring, right?

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