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Spotting Employment Liability Exposure


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Spotting Employment Liability Exposure by Jeffrey A. Daxe

Published in: Law
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Spotting Employment Liability Exposure

  1. 1. Employment Liability Exposure How CPAs Can Spot Problems and Reduce Client Exposure Presented by: Jeffrey A. Daxe Moore Ingram Johnson & Steele, LLP 326 Roswell Street Marietta, GA 30060
  2. 2. Spotting The Problem/Mitigating The Risk 1. Payroll Tax Liability 2. Wage and Hour 3. Trade Secrets 4. Discrimination
  3. 3. 1. Payroll Tax Liability – Spotting The Problem • Employees misclassified as independent contractors • Owner’s personal tax liability • Workers’ compensation audit (NCCI)
  4. 4. 1. Payroll Tax Liability – Mitigation • Properly classify employees • Draft appropriate independent contractor agreement • Independent contractor incorporation
  5. 5. 2. Wage & Hour – Spotting The Problem • Poor record keeping of time worked • All employees salaried – even at low pay • No one ever paid overtime regardless of hours worked
  6. 6. 2. Wage & Hour Mitigation • Exempt salaried employees must earn $23,600 • Salaried does not equal exempt • Keep track of all time • Permitting the work means you owe for it
  7. 7. 3. Protecting Trade Secrets – Spotting The Problem • Current and former employees present the greatest risk • Companies must have physical and computer security to invoke court protections • Handbooks and employment contracts should explicitly protect confidential material
  8. 8. 3. Protecting Trade Secrets - Mitigation • Password protect computers • Physical locks on files or doors where sensitive materials are maintained • Employment contract with confidentiality, return of company property, and non- solicitation provision • Employee Handbook provisions mirroring employment contract
  9. 9. 4. Discrimination – Spotting The Problem • Non-current employee handbook • No method to resolve issues except through direct supervisor • No regular EEO training
  10. 10. 4. Discrimination - Mitigation • Annually updated employee handbook • Routine EEO training for management and staff • Employment Practices Liability Insurance (“EPLI”) • Severance/Release
  11. 11. Employment Law Group Moore Ingram Johnson & Steele, LLP ATTORNEYS Jeffrey A. Daxe, Partner J. Brian O’Neil, Partner Clayton O. Carmack, Partner T. Shane Mayes, Partner James D. Walker III Carey E. Olson EMPLOYMENT PRACTICE AREAS •The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) •The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) •Title VII •The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) •Employee Retirement Income Securities Act (ERISA) •Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) •Employee Benefits •Employment Agreements
  12. 12. Employment Liability Exposure How CPAs Can Spot Problems and Reduce Client Exposure Questions & Answers Presented by: Jeffrey A. Daxe