Posts from March 2017.

Small employers struggling to assist their employees with the cost of health coverage, but daunted by the high cost of a group health plan, now have another option.

The 21st Century Cures Act, passed at the end of 2016, created a new type of reimbursement plan called a Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangement (QSEHRA). QSEHRAs allow eligible small employers to reimburse employees for premiums for individual health insurance policies and other eligible medical expenses. This is a change, as since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), employers of all ...

Exactly a year ago today in what now appears to be a temporary reprieve, the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association.  An “equally divided court” affirmed the judgment of the 9th Circuit that “fair share” or “agency” fee provisions in public sector contracts were valid.  Up to that time, observers had anticipated that the Supreme Court would use Friedrichs to overturn its 1977 opinion in Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, which held agency fees were deemed proper if exacted for “collective ...

On March 22, 2017, the U.S. Senate passed a measure to revoke OSHA’s modification to the six-month statute of limitations for recordkeeping violations. Under the Obama Administration, OSHA issued a new rule to extend the statute of limitations for recordkeeping violations from six months to five years. The changed recordkeeping regulation went into effect in January 2017, but a bill is now on its way to President Trump who is expected to sign the bill and revoke the new regulation.

OSHA issued the new recordkeeping rule on December 16, 2016 in response to an adverse decision by the ...

Although bathroom use seems to be at the forefront with the media in regards to transgender issues; there are several other issues to consider, and the final rule on health plan nondiscrimination is no exception. Transgender related health services tend to deal with gender dysphoria, a medical condition where an individual’s gender identity is different from the sex assigned to that individual at birth.

The final regulations implementing Affordable Care Act (ACA) Section 1557 is applicable to plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2017. Within the final rule, the following ...

Nondiscrimination and privacy laws make recordkeeping a daunting task. Here are some compliance tips for today’s highly legislated and regulated business world:

KNOW THE FILE TYPES

Not all files are the same.

A Personnel file contains documents used to determine qualifications for employment (e.g., promotion, transfer, compensation), discharge, and other discipline. Therefore, do not include records indicating protected characteristics – race, religion, marital/dependent status, date of birth (age) and the like – because this information should not ...

The organizers of January’s Women’s March on Washington and similar “sister” marches across the country are calling for women to “take the day off from paid and unpaid labor” on March 8, 2017.  Promoted as a “Day Without A Woman” and an “International Women’s Strike,” the protests are scheduled to coincide with International Woman’s Day.

While we do not anticipate the level of participation to be on the scale of the January marches, employers will likely experience higher than normal employee absences and should plan accordingly. As a general rule:

  • Have a ...

The settlement of a recent pregnancy discrimination lawsuit brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) against RTG Furniture Corp., provides a valuable reminder to employers that even well-intentioned limitations placed on pregnant employees are likely to violate Title VII and, where applicable, state laws that prohibit pregnancy discrimination.

According to the EEOC’s allegations in the lawsuit, within days of being hired, a new employee informed RTG that she was pregnant, but that she had no work restrictions and could perform all aspects of the job ...

Welcome to the Labor and Employment Law Update where attorneys from SmithAmundsen blog about management side labor and employment issues. 

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