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Other Archives

Employer Concern (Fear?) in 2018

As we open the book on Calendar 2018, there are various concerns for Employers. Obviously, the recent passage of a major overhaul of the United States Tax Code will present many opportunities to Employers, both from an accounting perspective (alleged tax savings) and also from a perspective of handling payroll systems. Obviously, this will be a continuing concern in 2018, but there are three (3) other areas that may "bode ill" for Employers.

Take Steps to Avoid Overly Inflated Performance Reviews

As 2017 comes to an end, many companies will perform their annual employee performance reviews. Companies typically do performance reviews at the beginning of the calendar or their fiscal year or at the employee's anniversary with the company. No matter when you perform reviews, companies need to be careful that managers do not over rate their subordinates. Many managers (sometimes unconsciously) over rate the employees they are reviewing. There are numerous reasons this happens.

End of the Year HR Self-Audits

As 2017 comes to an end and 2018 is about to begin, it is a very good time to conduct a HR self-audit to make sure your company is in compliance with all HR and employment laws

Illinois Responsible Job Creation Act

Effective as of June 1, 2018, the Illinois Responsible Job Creation Act, which amends the Day and Temporary Labor Services Act (820 ILCS 175/1 et seq.), is intended to strengthen and stiffen the Temporary Staffing Industry Regulation. It is alleged that there are over five hundred thousand (500,000) Temporary Workers in the State of Illinois and that more stringent regulations, both of Day and Temporary Labor Service Agencies and Third Party Users, is necessary. Whether this is true or not may be subject to debate, but our brilliant and esteemed legislators believe that it is a necessary course of action.

The Holidays Are A'Comin

Over the past few years, the author has written a "Holiday Article" to provide some guidance/legal insight into the somewhat complicated "Business Holiday Party". I have received numerous suggestions and/or recommendations (and some good natured kidding), but I am not detoured! It is never too early to begin planning for the Holiday Season of Calendar 2017!

Illinois Privacy Issues

A Chicago law firm, Edelson P.C., that bills itself as the "Plaintiff Class Action Powerhouse" has launched three (3) separate class action lawsuits in the Cook County court system for what is alleged as violations of the Illinois Biometric Privacy Act (740 ILCS 14/1 et seq.).

Harvey and Irma - Employer's Dilemma

The effects of Harvey and Irma will have longstanding impact on the expenditure of federal resources and the everyday life of Texas and Florida citizens. They are also a reminder to all businesses of the impact of natural events and the importance of disaster recovery planning. A business' first concern should always be the safety and protection of its employees and its physical property. However, a natural disaster can destroy a business' information and assets that are critical to its success and continuity. There are key steps to prepare and respond to a natural disaster and to minimize the disruption. Here are a few steps to conduct for an effective disaster recovery plan:

Not if, But When: Employers Must Have Plan in Place to React to; Data Breaches Compromising Employee Records

Last year U.S. companies and government agencies reported 1,093 data security breaches, a 40 percent increase from 2015. The high-profile breaches include the hacking that affected more than 1,000 Wendy's Co. chains in July 2016. Just last week, McDonald's Canada announced that data of 95,000 of its job applicants were compromised in a cyber-breach. But, it's not only cyber hacking that can cause security breaches for companies; in 2014, the theft of unencrypted laptops at Coca-Cola, revealed sensitive information of about 74,000 current and former employees at the company. Last fall, a Boeing worker inadvertently exposed the personal data of 36,000 Boeing employees in four states by sending a spreadsheet to his spouse. According to a UK-based study, employee error, like that in the Boeing case, is most often to blame for data security breaches.

EPLI Coverage: If You Like Us, Let Them Know

Over the last ten years or so, Employment Practice Liability Insurance ("EPLI") has become a more and more common form of insurance coverage for businesses. Unlike traditional sources of coverage, which insure against risks associated with business operations, products, work injuries, hazards, etc., EPLI covers an employer against liability stemming from employment practices, such as damages (e.g., back pay, front pay, compensatory damages, attorney fees, etc.) for unlawful discrimination, wrongful discharge, whistleblowing, etc.

President Trump Appoints MN Supreme Court Justice to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit

On May 8th President Trump began nominating judges to fill more than 125 existing vacancies in the nation's federal courts. Among his first 10 nominees following the recent appointment of Justice Neal Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court, is our own Minnesota Supreme Court Justice David Stras, whom the President nominated to a seat on the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. Assuming Judge Stras' appointment is confirmed by the U.S. Senate, he will continue to influence legal issues in Minnesota but on the federal level since the Eighth Circuit oversees the federal courts in Minnesota as well as Iowa, Missouri, Nebraska and North and South Dakota. As would be expected, Judge Stras's nomination is supported by conservative groups such as the Heritage Foundation and Federalist Society (known for its "strict constructionist" position on how the laws and constitution should be interpreted by the courts). Judge Stras holds several degrees from the University of Kansas, including an MBA and JD. After teaching at the University of Minnesota Law School as an assistant professor, in 2010 then Governor Tim Pawlenty appointed him to a vacant seat on the Minnesota Supreme Court and he won re-election in 2012.

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