More Details on COBRA Continuation Subsidy in Stimulus Package

February 20, 2009 - by: HR Hero 19 COMMENTS

Update Dec. 16: House Passes COBRA Subsidy Extension and Expansion

You’re probably well aware by now that the $787 billion economic stimulus package signed by President Barack Obama this week will provide many out-of-work employees and their families with a reduced rate on continuing health care coverage under COBRA. Because the stimulus plan was adopted so quickly in Congress, it has been difficult to learn and understand the details. Here’s an outline of some of the major provisions of the stimulus package that relate to the COBRA subsidy.

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Mental Health Parity Act Effective Date Delayed

February 18, 2009 - by: HR Hero 16 COMMENTS

Update: Mental Health Parity Changes Take Effect January 1, 2010

Congress deferred the effective date of the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 to January 2010 for plans that otherwise would have been covered in 2009.

The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act amends the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and the Public Health Service Act to prohibit employers’ health plans from imposing any caps or limitations on mental health treatment or substance use disorder benefits that aren’t applied to medical and surgical benefits.

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Stimulus Bill Brings COBRA, Other Issues for Employers

February 16, 2009 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

Update Dec. 16: House Passes COBRA Subsidy Extension and Expansion

Even as President Barack Obama prepares for a trip to Denver Tuesday to sign the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, better known as the stimulus package, many are still trying to sort out the bill, which Congress passed last Friday in dizzyingly rapid fashion.

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Obama Signs Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act

January 29, 2009 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

Thursday morning, President Barack Obama signed the first bill of his White House tenure, putting his campaign theme of change into immediate action by overturning U.S. Supreme Court precedent.The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act will affect employers charged with pay discrimination by significantly expanding employees’ time for filing suit.

Specifically, the Fair Pay Act amends Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) to declare that an unlawful employment practice occurs not only upon adoption of a discriminatory compensation decision or practice but also when the employee becomes subject to the decision or practice as well as each additional application of the decision or practice. In other words, the 180-day statute of limitations will now be extended on every occurrence of an unlawful employment practice, including issuance of paychecks.

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Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act passed

January 09, 2009 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

Update: U.S. Senate has passed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and it has been sent to President Barack Obama. He is scheduled to sign the bill into law on Jan. 29, 2009.

In one of its first major employment law actions of the year, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed legislation that will significantly ease the time limits for employees to file wage discrimination claims.

The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 (H.R. 11) passed the House January 9 with a vote of 247-171. The Act amends Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) to declare that an unlawful employment practice occurs not only upon adoption of a discriminatory compensation decision or practice but also when the individual becomes subject to the decision or practice, as well as each additional application of that decision or practice. In other words, each time compensation is paid.

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New Employment Laws and Regulations Going into Effect

December 31, 2008 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

While the world has been focused on the U.S. and global economic meltdown, a historic presidential election, and staggering unemployment numbers, some pretty significant changes have been made in federal employment laws and regulations with most going into effect in just a few weeks. A recent issue of HR Hero Line includes a roundup of those laws and regulations including:

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New FMLA regulations explained

November 24, 2008 - by: HR Hero 3 COMMENTS

A special issue of HR Hero Line, a free weekly e-zine from HR Hero and employment law attorneys who are part of the Employers Counsel Network, took an in-depth look at the new FMLA regulations that go into effect January 16 and what they mean to employers.

10 key changes in new FMLA regulations” by Susan M. Webman details 10 issues that the new Famuily and Medical Leave Act rules address, including substituting time off, employees’ waiver of FMLA rights, light duty work, and employee and employer notification requirements. Webman and her colleague David Fortney at the law firm of Fortney & Scott, LLC, and Rodney Satterwhite of the law firm McGuireWoods LLP will present a 90 minute audio conference on the new FMLA regulations and another audio conference on changes the new FMLA regs have made to intermittent leave.

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Categories: Federal Laws / FMLA

New FMLA Regulations Issued by DOL

November 14, 2008 - by: HR Hero 5 COMMENTS

Final regulations under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), were issued Friday by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). The new regulations allow employers more control over when employees can take leave. As expected, the new regulations cover the recently enacted leave benefits for family members of both seriously injured or ill service members and National Guard and Reserve members who have been called to service. These are the first significant revisions to the FMLA regulations since the law was enacted 15 years ago and will affect all employers subject to the FMLA.

Read the entire FMLA regs from the DOL

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Categories: Connecticut / Federal Laws / FMLA / Kansas

DOL Closer to Issuing New FMLA Regs

November 10, 2008 - by: HR Hero 1 COMMENTS

Update: New FMLA regulations issued by DOL on November 14, 2008

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has sent to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) its final draft of revised Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) regulations, which could be published in the Federal Register this month. These would be the first new FMLA regulations since 1995, when the current regulations were issued. The FMLA itself was enacted in 1993.

In developing the draft final regs, the DOL reviewed several thousand comments on the proposed FMLA regulations it published back in February of this year. The contents of the final draft aren’t yet known, of course, but the final rules may retain some of the following proposed regulations.

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Categories: Federal Laws / FMLA

Mental Health Parity Measure Part of Bailout Package

October 06, 2008 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

A mental health parity measure has been passed in Congress as part of the $700 billion financial rescue package. The measure requires covered employers that provide health plans to cover mental illness and substance abuse on the same basis as physical conditions. President George W. Bush signed the financial package on Friday, October 3. The mental health provisions go into effect one year after enactment, with a different effective date for collective bargaining agreements.

Here are some of the provisions of the mental health measure: read more…

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