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Policies / Handbooks

Warn supervisors: Never delete texts and emails related to employee’s complaint

07/24/2018
Be sure to warn supervisors and managers that if an employee has filed an EEOC or internal complaint or a state or federal lawsuit, deleting texts or emails related even tangentially to the underlying complaint can be risky.

Even with FMLA, enforce no-show/no-call rule

07/24/2018
Employers can and should set reasonable standards for how employees let their bosses know they won’t be coming to work. Those rules can require calling in before the start of a shift if the employee is ill or has a medical emergency, even if it may be covered by the FMLA.

When punishing harassment, you may discipline different perpetrators differently

07/14/2018
Employers investigating workplace harassment accusations may wonder if all the alleged perpetrators must be disciplined equally harshly. You do have some discretion in how you mete out punishment. Just make sure you can later justify why one party was less culpable or deserved a lesser punishment than others.

Review your handbook: NLRB changes the rules on workplace rules

07/13/2018
The National Labor Relations Board last year overturned an established standard for determining if workplace rules comply with the National Labor Relations Act. Now the NLRB has issued a memorandum providing employer guidance.

Gov’t employees: No due process claim to promotion

06/26/2018
Public employees have a right to due process before being deprived of the property interest that is their job. Essentially, that means a public employer has to provide “some sort of a hearing” allowing the worker to present his side of the story before being fired. That right doesn’t extend to a promotion not granted.

Failure to follow reporting procedures can justify firing—even if boss should have acted

06/26/2018
If an employer has a process in place for reporting wrongdoing that includes bypassing one’s supervisor when necessary, employees who don’t take that step can’t aviod punishment by blaming the supervisor. That’s not a justified excuse.

Review handbook for at-will conflicts

06/12/2018
If an employee has a contract with his employer that specifically limits his discharge, then at-will employment does not apply. This situation can get tricky if your employee handbook lacks a contract disclaimer or contains language that seems to limit your right to fire employees.

Snapshot: Big business makes progress on LGBT issues

06/12/2018
An overwhelming majority of Fortune 500 corporations prohibit discrimination on the basis of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender status.

Did Starbucks fail at communicating policy?

05/17/2018
It’s likely that the Starbucks incidents reveal some form of discriminatory animus on the part of individual employees. But from a management and HR perspective, there is another layer.

Rule requiring employees to speak only English at work may be race discrimination

05/07/2018
Take note if you have rules against speaking languages other than English at work: That could constitute race discrimination under Section 1981 of the Civil Rights Act of 1866.