Common Mistakes Employers MakeRegarding Federal and State Employment,Labor, Discrimination and Safety Laws.    Tony Metz-S...
Federal & State Required Posters  Most Employers don’t post all of the   required Federal and State required   posters. ...
I-9 Forms    Improper or incomplete filing of I-9 forms      Not completing filling out and signing      Wrong informat...
Family Medical Leave    Not understanding the law    Eligibility requirements-company has 50 or     more employees. Empl...
Employee Files and Records    Putting everything in one file    Should separate HR files from any medical     info    N...
Record Retention Chart                         6
Ineffective Hiring Procedures  Application not legal  Asking illegal questions during the   interview  Not having a con...
Common Wage & Hour Issues    Improper classification of exempt employees vs. non-exempt employees     —the FLSA dictates ...
Employee Wages and Salaries    Most organizations do NOT have a system for     determining pay    Many jobs are overpaid...
Harassment Prevention    Most organizations do not have a policy on     harassment prevention        This policy needs t...
Disciplines/Terminations    Your company discipline actions should be consistent         Advise keeping a disciplinary l...
Safety/OSHA Compliance    OSHA requires written plans on many different areas    OSHA also requires periodic training fo...
Worker’s Compensation    Should take advantage of having a panel of     physicians in PA    Make the expectation of repo...
Employee Handbooks    I think this can be your most important HR     document    Most organizations either don’t have an...
Key Policies and Procedures    Attendance Policies        Most are not specific enough        Usually don’t apply to ex...
Performance Feedback  Most employers don’t have a good   feedback mechanism  Recommend a simple performance   appraisal ...
Recommendations    Have a complete HR/Safety Assessment     periodically conducted    Update your Employee Handbook at l...
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R&S Seminar Common Mistakes Employers Make Regarding Federal And State

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R&S Seminar Common Mistakes Employers Make Regarding Federal And State

  1. 1. Common Mistakes Employers MakeRegarding Federal and State Employment,Labor, Discrimination and Safety Laws. Tony Metz-SR HR & Safety Consultant Rotz & Stonesifer, P.C 1
  2. 2. Federal & State Required Posters  Most Employers don’t post all of the required Federal and State required posters.  Suggest buying all-in-one posters  New NLRA Required poster for private employers—January 31, 2012  Must be posted in proper areas 2
  3. 3. I-9 Forms  Improper or incomplete filing of I-9 forms  Not completing filling out and signing  Wrong information in wrong areas  Don’t advise copying records-License and Social Security cards  Not keeping in a separate file  Not using the most updated form  Recommend using E-verify 3
  4. 4. Family Medical Leave  Not understanding the law  Eligibility requirements-company has 50 or more employees. Employee work at least 12 months and over 1250 hrs.  If under 50 emp’s-this doesn’t apply  Most companies don’t have a policy  Must give employees notification of what FMLA has been used or it doesn’t count towards the 12 weeks  Poor recordkeeping  Not using the DOL recommended forms 4
  5. 5. Employee Files and Records  Putting everything in one file  Should separate HR files from any medical info  Not understanding that different laws have different record retentions  Not securing records  Failing to report New Hires (within 20 days of date of hire)  Restricting access to personnel files 5
  6. 6. Record Retention Chart 6
  7. 7. Ineffective Hiring Procedures  Application not legal  Asking illegal questions during the interview  Not having a consistent list of interview questions for common jobs  Not doing background checks  Not doing drug/alcohol testing 7
  8. 8. Common Wage & Hour Issues  Improper classification of exempt employees vs. non-exempt employees —the FLSA dictates this  Calling someone salaried doesn’t make them exempt  No lunch period or break time requirement for adults (child labor laws exist that spell this out)  Comp time is illegal for non-exempt workers  Docking exempt employee’s pay for a partial day absence  If you do give a lunch/break period under 20 minutes—generally should be paid  Can’t take away pay for disciplinary issues. You can suspend and not pay.  No requirement for holiday pay, vacation pay, sick time  Should spell out what counts toward Overtime pay—you are not obligated to count non-working time towards the calculation of OT  Independent contractor vs. Employee classification  Travel pay 8
  9. 9. Employee Wages and Salaries  Most organizations do NOT have a system for determining pay  Many jobs are overpaid—employer keeps giving increases each year and longer-service employees are overpaid  Can handle with lump sum payments  Pay should be tied to performance  Should participate in local and regional wage surveys  PA Dept of Labor has on the website a list of average wages  Must be aware of the Equal Pay Act 9
  10. 10. Harassment Prevention  Most organizations do not have a policy on harassment prevention  This policy needs to include a thorough reporting procedure  Most organizations have not done harassment prevention training  Harassment includes more than sexual harassment  Should do periodic training  First line of defense on a claim  Your organization can be liable even if you don’t know that it is occurring—policy and training can assist with this  There are a few big lawsuits still pending in the local area  Recent National events bring light to this subject and claims actually increase due to the awareness 10
  11. 11. Disciplines/Terminations  Your company discipline actions should be consistent  Advise keeping a disciplinary log  Lack of what is acceptable attendance  Don’t restrict your ability to discipline with very specific punishment guidelines  You must do a thorough investigation and get both sides of the story.  Get the facts—don’t react quickly to emotional supervisors/managers  Document everything  Have questionable terminations reviewed by someone with proper knowledge  Give last chance agreements where appropriate  Give one reason for a termination—not multiple reasons 11
  12. 12. Safety/OSHA Compliance  OSHA requires written plans on many different areas  OSHA also requires periodic training for employees.  See training table  OSHA logs must be posted annually and be updated at all times  Please make sure that you are not putting every reported claim on the OSHA log  This could unnecessarily put you on their watch list  Keep thorough training records  Keep files by regulation with all needed documents 12
  13. 13. Worker’s Compensation  Should take advantage of having a panel of physicians in PA  Make the expectation of reporting injuries very clear (usually within 24 hours)  Should have thorough accident investigation process  Person reporting claims should be skilled on how they verbalize the injury  Should have a strong return-to-work program  Review your loss control reports and close out claims 13
  14. 14. Employee Handbooks  I think this can be your most important HR document  Most organizations either don’t have an employee handbook or it is not updated  Recommend updates to handbooks every 2-3 years.  Spell out that employees are at-will  Spell out key employee expectations in the employee handbook along with adequate summaries of key employment policies and procedures 14
  15. 15. Key Policies and Procedures  Attendance Policies  Most are not specific enough  Usually don’t apply to exempt employees  Drug Testing Policies  Need to spell out what types of drug testing are to be conducted and violations  All PTO policies need spelled out in detail  Whether you have an accrued/earned system vs. non- accrued system  Spell out what happens in the event of termination or voluntary quit  Any promotion system should be spelled out in detail giving the employer much flexibility 15
  16. 16. Performance Feedback  Most employers don’t have a good feedback mechanism  Recommend a simple performance appraisal form (KISS)  Train managers/supervisors how to properly complete forms  Ensure consistency in rating systems  Have performance scores tie to pay increases 16
  17. 17. Recommendations  Have a complete HR/Safety Assessment periodically conducted  Update your Employee Handbook at least every 3 years  Take the time and ensure you get the facts before disciplines/terminations  Be proactive—Don’t wait till something happens before you take action  Learn the laws or use a part-time expert to assist your organization 17

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