Category

Employment Law

Year-End “Punch List” Items – Are You on Track?

By | Benefits & Insurance, Best Practices, Employment Law, Payroll, Policies and Procedures, Record-keeping

The end of any year is always challenging, between juggling personnel holiday vacation schedules, preparing year-end paperwork, and making adjustments for the upcoming year. From Affordable Care Act compliance and reporting to adjusting compensation strategies, there is no shortage of things to do. In case you are overloaded or running behind this year, here’s a handy list of items to review and determine if you have outstanding work for any of them. To simplify things,…

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Compliance Tips for 2019

By | Best Practices, Employment Law, OSHA Regulations, Policies and Procedures

As we head toward the new year, following are some considerations for compliance in various areas. Staying on top of these will help keep your firm out of trouble while minimizing expenses and payroll. Payroll compliance is often more about correct interpretation of the law than math. If you are having trouble discerning between employees and independent contractors, look to the IRS guidelines for direction. Some—but not all—employee discounts qualify as income. Learn the difference. Even…

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Are Placement “Registries” Employers ? A Recent Agency Bulletin Suggests Not, but Caveats Remain

By | Best Practices, Employment Law, Policies and Procedures

In July 2018, Bryan Jarrett, Acting Administrator of the Department of Labor (DoL), issued Field Assistance Bulletin No. 2018-4 (FAB) to help Wage & Hour Division (WHD) field investigators determine whether home care, nurse, or caregiver registries are employers under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Registries aren’t employers – they are “worker matching services,” in this case, matching people who need care giving services with the caregivers who provide them. For this registry, the caregivers were home health…

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Workplace “Body Art” − An Update

By | Best Practices, Employment Law, Harassment and Discrimination, Hiring

Author’s note: In August, 2017, we published an article about the growing incidence of body art (tattoos and piercings) in the workplace. At the time, we talked about what the trend meant for employers, and what their rights were, when it came to restricting visible body art. A year later, we wanted to revisit the topic. In 2015, the ABA called “Grooming, religion and body art the new frontier in workplace discrimination.” Depending on the industry,…

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Don’t Run Afoul of the Fair Credit Reporting Act!

By | Best Practices, Employment Law, Hiring, Risk Management & Safety

Author’s Note: We originally published this article in 2014, and it still holds true today. In fact, with “Ban the Box” and “Fair Chance” laws, which are designed to level the playing field for people with criminal histories, and with new restrictions on the handling of personal information, navigating the maze of background check rules has become even more difficult. Add to this new “salary ban” laws—which prohibit employers from asking about prior salaries—and compliant…

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Summer Reading – What’s On Your List?

By | Best Practices, Employment Law, Employment News, Harassment and Discrimination, Hiring, Technology in the Workplace

As we head toward the true start of summer, many of us look forward to reading a good book while on vacation at the beach or in the mountains. While summer may be a great opportunity for R&R, we thought our clients might also like to stay abreast of some issues that affect them as an employer. Enjoy! Supreme Court Decision Supports Employer Rights in Dispute Arbitration: In late May, the Supreme Court found that…

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Contractor or Employee—Has a “Business Friendly” Administration Relaxed the Rules?

By | Employment Law, Hiring, Policies and Procedures

Last year, President Trump withdrew two Obama-era Department of Labor (DOL) “Guidance Letters,” one of which had made it more difficult for companies to safely classify workers as independent contractors. Some national organizations hailed withdrawal of the guidance as “pro-employer,” but Marathon recommended companies continue to be very cautious with their determinations. Now, we are reiterating that stance. With the withdrawal of the guidance letter, a 2015 “multi-factor test” was no longer relevant. However, the…

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US Dept. of Labor Issues New Guidance on Interns, Increasing Employer Flexibility

By | Employment Law, Hiring, News

In January, the U.S. Department of Labor (DoL) rolled out new guidelines that make it easier for companies to use unpaid interns, but some labor experts are warning the guidance is not a panacea. The update, published in a DoL guidance document on its website, sets a more flexible standard for employers than previous guidance. Now, interns must be the “primary beneficiaries” of the program—in other words, the programs must benefit the intern more than the…

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How Will the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Impact Your Workers’ Taxes?

By | Employment Law, Employment News, Payroll

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has taken effect and you and your employees may have noticed a change in take-home pay. This happened because the marginal tax rate dropped for the average individual, but that doesn’t mean they can keep the extra money. If most of your employees received an increase in their pay, it might be prudent to caution them not to celebrate, just yet. An increase in take-home pay will not necessarily…

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Top 10 OSHA Violations for 2017—Is Your Firm Safe from Them?

By | Employment Law, OSHA Regulations, Policies and Procedures, Risk Management & Safety, Workplace Injuries

At the National Safety Council’s September, 2017 Congress and Expo in Indianapolis, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced the top 10 cited violations for 2017.  As you might expect, the number one violation—fall protection—reflects the top cause of workplace injuries—falls. The next three—hazard protection, scaffolding protection and respiratory protection—also related to likely causes of workplace injuries. This list is a reminder to employers that workplace safety is a top priority, and that safety…

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