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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New I-9 Form Delayed for 60 Days

February 02, 2009 - by: HR Hero 5 COMMENTS

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced a 60-day delay in implementing the new Form I-9 for employment eligibility verification for new hires.

The new I-9 forms were to take effect February 2, but a seemingly last-minute decision was made on January 30 to delay implementation of the I-9 forms and their accompanying rules. The delay comes in response to a January memorandum from President Barack Obama’s Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. In that memorandum, Emanuel directed all federal agencies to put a freeze on certain unimplemented federal regulations, recommending that these regulations be subject to a 60-day hold for further agency consideration.

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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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Reminder about OSHA Posting Requirement

January 26, 2009 - by: HR Hero 2 COMMENTS

It’s time to post your Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Form 300A, the summary of job-related injuries and illnesses that occurred last year. Unless you have 10 or fewer employees or fall within one of the industries normally excused from the Occupational Safety and Health Act’s (OSH Act) recordkeeping and posting requirements, you’re required to post OSHA Form 300A (not the OSHA 300 form/log) annually from February 1 to April 30. A complete list of exempt industries in the retail, services, finance, and real estate sectors is posted on OSHA’s website at www.osha.gov.

The OSHA Form 300A summary must list the total number of job-related injuries and illnesses that occurred in 2008 and were logged on the OSHA 300 form. Additional information about your annual average number of employees and total hours they worked during the calendar year also is required to help the agency calculate incidence rates. Even if you had no recordable injuries or illnesses for 2008, you still must post the OSHA Form 300A, listing zeros on the total line. All summaries must be certified by a company executive.

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Categories: Federal Regulations / OSHA

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 E-Verify Rule for Federal Contractors Delayed

January 09, 2009 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

Update: E-verify deadline moved to September 2009

Federal contractors have been given at least a temporary reprieve from the E-Verify regulations that were set to go into effect January 15. Under the plan, the contractors would be required to begin using the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services E-Verify system to ensure that their employees are eligible to work in the United States.

Several business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, filed a lawsuit last week in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland seeking to have the court rule that the E-Verify regulations are unconstitutional. The court immediately ordered the U.S. government and the business groups to confer by next Monday to see if some compromise could be reached regarding the January 15 effective date. The parties have agreed to postpone the effective date to February 20. In the meantime, they will present their legal arguments to the court, which is expected to rule before February 20 on whether the regulations can withstand a constitutional challenge.

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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HHS Regs Offer Protection for Health Care Providers’ Moral Beliefs

December 19, 2008 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

In a remarkably last-minute fashion, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued final regulations protecting health care providers who withhold medical care based on conflicting moral beliefs.

The rule, which covers federally funded health care providers, takes effect January 18, 2009 — the required 30 days after its under-the-wire December 19 publication. The provisions of the rule are intended to: read more…

Categories: Federal Regulations

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

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