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Policies / Handbooks

Starbucks customers to see a latte more ink

12/23/2014
In response to employee feedback, Starbucks has changed its employee appearance policy to allow employees to show more of their tattoos.

Providing References to Other Employers

12/19/2014

HR Law 101: Despite all the risks, providing other employers with references about your former employees is a good business practice. If you refused to provide references, eventually you would compromise your ability to find out about applicants you’re considering hiring …

Accommodating Medical Marijuana

12/18/2014

HR Law 101: Currently, 23 states have legalized the use of medical marijuana. Whether employers in those states must accommodate legal medical marijuana use depends on how courts interpret state law.

Severance Pay

12/18/2014

HR Law 101: Severance policies are generally considered employee benefit plans entitled to ERISA protection, many courts have ruled. For employers, that means conforming to ERISA’s recordkeeping and disclosure requirements …

5 elements of a social media policy that works

12/15/2014
While social media can improve an organization’s image and communication, it can also present risks to companies that don’t have a clear policy defining how employees may use it.

NLRB says employees can use company email to discuss pay, union organizing

12/15/2014

If your organization has a blanket policy that prohibits workers from using the organization’s email for personal matters, it’s time to revise it. The National Labor Relations Board ruled that employees have the right to use their employer’s email system (during off-duty time) to engage in legally protected communications, including discussing wages and even organizing a union.

Occupational Safety and Health Act

12/15/2014

HR Law 101: The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) requires all employers to provide a safe and healthy workplace for their employees. Enacted in 1970, the law also mandates specific guidelines for certain industries and protects workers who file whistle-blower complaints about hazardous conditions in their companies …

Email/Internet Usage

12/15/2014

HR Law 101: Employers have any number of legitimate reasons to monitor employees’ email and Internet usage. Beyond personal productivity issues, you risk significant loss should an employee download a virus or other damaging software or engage in illegal activity conducted on company computers …

Fast lane to legal liability: Require employees to use their cars for work

12/08/2014

Do you sometimes require em­­ployees to use their personal cars during the workday for job-related tasks like going on appointments, making banking runs or other errands? You’re risking liability if the em­­ployee is in an accident and a jury decides he was negligent.

Disaster and pandemic planning for employers: A primer

12/05/2014
Having even a basic plan in place will help if and when the unthinkable strikes.