DOL’s health insurance marketplace form is now expired . . . but fear not

February 01, 2017 - by: HR Hero Alerts 0 COMMENTS

Employers have a lot to worry about these days. Fortunately, the expiration of the marketplace notice form issued by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) isn’t something else to add to the list.

The form, New Health Insurance Marketplace Coverage Options and Your Health Coverage, comes in two versions: one for employers that offer some sort of health coverage and one for employers that don’t. Both versions of the form expired on Tuesday, January 31.

The DOL hasn’t issued new versions, and with the future of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in doubt, it’s unclear whether the agency will. Fortunately, employers may continue using the old versions of the forms for now without risk of penalty.

Trump aims to help businesses with 2-for-1 regulatory plan

January 31, 2017 - by: Kate McGovern Tornone 0 COMMENTS

On January 30, President Donald Trump signed an Executive Order directing federal agencies to cut two regulations for every new one issued during the current fiscal year (FY). The move is aimed at alleviating regulatory burdens on both small and large businesses, Trump said while signing the order.

The order says that unless prohibited by law, an agency must identify at least two existing regulations to repeal each time it proposes or finalizes a new regulation. “If you have a regulation you want—number one, we’re not going to approve it because it’s already been approved probably in 17 different forms, but if we do—the only way you have a chance is, we have to knock out two regulations for every new regulation,” he said.

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With ‘no-brainer’ appointment, Lipnic will head EEOC

January 27, 2017 - by: Kate McGovern Tornone 0 COMMENTS

President Donald Trump has chosen Victoria A. Lipnic to serve as acting chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced on January 25. She will replace Jenny Yang as chair, but Democrats still will retain a majority on the commission for some time.

Lipnic’s appointment was “a no-brainer,” says Jonathan Mook, a founding partner at DiMuro Ginsberg PC and an editor of Virginia Employment Law Letter. “It makes so much sense,” he said, adding that both employers and employees should fare well under her leadership. “She has a very good track record of working well with the Democratic appointees to achieve the goals of equal employment opportunity.”

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Republican ACA proposal poses challenges for multistate employers

January 25, 2017 - by: Kate McGovern Tornone 0 COMMENTS

A group of Republican senators has proposed a replacement bill for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that would allow states to choose whether to keep Obamacare’s provisions in place. Because employers’ requirements would depend on where employees work, compliance could be a real challenge for companies with operations in multiple states, according to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

The bill is seemingly an attempt to gain bipartisan support, but lawmakers on both sides have expressed dissatisfaction with its provisions, said Chatrane Birbal, SHRM’s senior adviser for government relations.

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Trump takes aim at ACA on first day in office

January 23, 2017 - by: Kate McGovern Tornone 0 COMMENTS

Following his inauguration on January 20, President Donald Trump signed his first round of Executive Orders, including one directing federal agencies to ease enforcement of some Affordable Care Act (ACA) requirements.

Trump told agencies to “waive, defer, grant exemptions from, or delay the implementation of”ACA provisions that impose fees or other burdens on a range of stakeholders, including individuals and health insurers.

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Supreme Court will consider class action waivers

January 20, 2017 - by: Kate McGovern Tornone 0 COMMENTS

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a trio of wage and hour cases involving arbitration agreements that require workers to waive their right to pursue employment claims as a group.

In recent years, the validity of such waivers has divided federal appeals courts and drawn the attention of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). The Board has held several times that even though federal law allows employers to adopt mandatory arbitration agreements, the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) grants workers the nonwaivable right to pursue claims on a class or collective basis.

The NLRB first reached that conclusion in 2012, holding that an employer’s arbitration agreement violated the NLRA because it required employees to agree to dispute claims individually. The employer appealed to the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, which reversed the Board’s ruling. D.R. Horton, Inc. v. NLRB, 737 F.3d 344 (5th Cir., 2013).

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Another New Jersey city requires paid sick time

by Michael H. Dell

Morristown has joined the list of New Jersey cities that require employers to provide paid sick time to employees. Employers in Morristown have until January 11 to come into compliance with the city’s paid sick time ordinance, which was passed in September.

Under the ordinance, employers with 10 or more employees in Morristown must provide up to 40 hours of paid sick time, while employers with nine or fewer employees in the city must provide up to 25 hours of paid sick time. In determining the number of employees it has, an employer must count full-time, part-time, and temporary employees.

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Overtime rule update: District court won’t wait for appeals court’s ruling

January 04, 2017 - by: Kate McGovern Tornone 0 COMMENTS

On January 3, a federal district court judge said he won’t halt proceedings in the case challenging the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) new overtime rules despite concurrent litigation in the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals.

The rules, which were scheduled to take effect December 1, 2016, would have required employers to pay overtime to employees earning less than $913 per week ($47,476 annually).

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It’s time to cozy up to the new I-9

January 03, 2017 - by: Kate McGovern Tornone 0 COMMENTS

It’s time for employers to get acquainted with the new Form I-9. The form is easier to use than the old version, but with just a few weeks left before employers must make the switch, it’s a good idea to get familiar with the form now, says Jacob Monty, managing partner at Monty & Ramirez, LLP, and a coeditor of Texas Employment Law Letter.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued the form on November 14, 2016. While employers are free to use either form for now, they must use the new form beginning January 22.

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Categories: HR Hero Alerts / Immigration / USCIS

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New Arizona minimum wage goes into effect January 1

by Dinita L. James
Gonzalez Law, LLC

The minimum wage in Arizona will jump from $8.05 to $10 on January 1 as a result of the passage of Proposition 206 in November.

A last-minute barrage of litigation by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry failed to block the increase from taking effect. On December 29, the Arizona Supreme Court entered a one-sentence order refusing to put the increase on hold.

Under the new law, the minimum wage will increase each year until it reaches $12 per hour in 2020. Employers can take a tip credit of up to $3 per hour for tips earned by workers who regularly and customarily receive tips.

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