Employment Law Blog

News, trends and analysis in employment law and HR

Showing posts by Kara Craig

Photo of Kara Craig
Jul 30 2019
Safety and Health  

Employer can’t blame worker for preventable on-the-job injury

A federal appeals court recently affirmed three citations for serious safety violations following the partial amputation of an employee’s thumb at a poultry processing plant. The company had challenged the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)’s citations in federal court, arguing that the injured employee engaged in unpreventable employee misconduct by violating…

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Photo of Kara Craig
Jul 01 2019
DisabilityHarassment & DiscriminationSafety and Health  

Employers need objective basis to require fitness-for-duty exam

A federal district court recently ruled that a police department complied with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) when it required a bomb squad technician to undergo a fitness-for-duty exam. Their justification? The city had an objective basis for the fitness-for-duty exam request. In this case, the technician was experiencing hand…

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Photo of Kara Craig
Jun 21 2019
Wage and Hour  

Employer must pay for time spent studying for work-related exam

A federal district court in Arizona recently ruled that employees must be paid for time spent studying for written tests that they were required to pass in order to complete on-the-job training. A group of long-haul truck drivers filed a lawsuit against their employer alleging violations of the Fair Labor…

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Photo of Kara Craig
May 17 2019
Harassment & Discrimination  

Saying “a lawyer made me do it” can destroy attorney-client privilege

Question: As an HR manager, I’m concerned about sharing legal advice that I receive on behalf of the company. What are the rules around this? Answer: All parties to an attorney-client communication made for the purpose of providing or obtaining legal advice must take steps to protect confidentiality. If you or someone else…

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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 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 Kara Craig
Jun 19 2018
Wage and Hour  

Pay Washington agricultural piece-rate workers for nonproductive time

The Washington Supreme Court has ruled that employers are required to compensate agricultural piece-rate workers on a separate hourly basis for all nonproductive time spent performing activities outside of piece-rate picking work. This nonproductive time must be paid at the applicable minimum wage or a contractually agreed rate, whichever is…

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Photo of Kara Craig
Mar 29 2018
Q&AWage and Hour  

Q&A: Be realistic when promising employee bonuses

Question: Our employee handbook states that all new employees will receive a $3,000 bonus on their three-year anniversary. Five employees will be eligible this year. Business is down and we really can’t afford this anymore. Do we have to pay them?

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Photo of Kara Craig
Mar 29 2018
Q&AHarassment & Discrimination  

Q&A: Is your company at risk for workplace harassment?

Question: We have an anti-harassment policy and complaint process in our employee handbook. We also conduct annual training for employees. What else should we be doing to prevent workplace harassment?

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Photo of Kara Craig
Mar 26 2018
Harassment & DiscriminationTermination & Resignation  

Q&A: Layoff of only older workers raises concerns

We just lost one of our biggest customers and have decided we need to lay off several employees from multiple departments. It turns out that all of the selected employees are over 40. Do we face potential liability?

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