• The HR Specialist - Print Newsletter
  • HR Specialist: Employment Law
  • The HR LAW Weekly
  • The HR Weekly

Discipline / Investigations

How to Respond to an EEOC Complaint: 10 Steps to Success

The EEOC and state and local agencies have been filing more administrative charges in recent years and that trend is likely to continue. Because administrative charges can be precursors to discrimination lawsuits, it’s critical for you to handle them properly. These 10 tips will help you prepare to respond: 1. Tell the whole story Often, […]

When employee threatens, you can and should discipline–regardless of reason


Employers and employees have the right to a safe work environment free from violence or direct threats of harm. Punishing an employee who puts others in danger or creates widespread fear is not only appropriate, but essential. That’s true regardless of the underlying reason for the threatening behavior. You can discipline the employee, no matter why he misbehaved.

Investigation must be reasonable–not perfect


Have you worried that your investigations into employee wrongdoing aren’t good enough? Stop fretting. As long as your investigations are fair and reasonable, they don’t have to be perfect. The workplace isn’t a court of law, and employers don’t have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that an employee broke a rule.

It’s safe to tell the truth about former employees

Let’s say you have fired someone for breaking company rules, conduct so severe that the police get involved. What should you tell people who call later, looking for references on the former employee? The truth!

Credibility plays part in handling harassment


When you have to fire a protected-class employee for sexual harassment, there’s always the fear that he will turn around and sue for discrimination. But remember: Credibility plays a part in deciding what happened in cases of alleged harassment. If a respected and trusted employee made the harassment accusation, the fired worker will have a hard time winning a lawsuit.

When employee disobeys, document insubordination

You can and should discipline employees who refuse to follow directions. Just make sure you document the insubordination.

When conducting bias investigations, you don’t need to be perfect–just reasonable

Here’s a bit of good news for HR professionals who worry that they aren’t conducting perfect investigations. Courts just want to see employers act reasonably. That doesn’t mean investigations must prove employee misconduct beyond a reasonable doubt.

Restaurant employee will serve time for wire fraud

Jeremy David Schweickert will serve a 27-month sentence in federal prison for his part in a scheme to defraud his former employer, Tampa-based OSI Restaurant Partners.

Property manager pleads guilty in VA foreclosure scam

A former sales manager for Palm Beach-based Ocwen Loan Servicing has pleaded guilty to wire fraud charges in connection with his management of foreclosed homes for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Past tolerance of misbehavior doesn’t mean it can continue

Some employees believe that if their supervisor tolerates misconduct, those further up the workplace hierarchy can’t do anything about it. That’s not true.