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Q&A

What are the rules for intermittent FMLA leave?

04/07/2014
Q. One of our employees has requested to take leave from work periodically to receive treatment for a medical condition. Are we obligated to allow the employee to take leave intermittently?

What are the basic rules for conducting background checks that pass legal muster?

04/07/2014
Q. We have several positions in our company that require financial discretion. May we perform background checks on applicants for these jobs?

How far must we go to accommodate a pregnant employee’s no-lifting request?

03/31/2014
Q. We have a pregnant employee who works as a nurse and has asked that she be excused from lifting patients during her pregnancy. Do we have to grant her request?

Could we be penalized for misclassification?

03/31/2014
Q. We have some employees that have been misclassified as exempt. We are working to rectify the situation, but could we still be penalized for the time the employee was misclassified?

Could questioning an employee about an incident be considered assault?

03/31/2014
Q. One of our employees was involved in an incident and questioned regarding suspected ­wrongdoing. He is now bringing a suit against the company, alleging that the act of being brought into a room and questioned at length constitutes false imprisonment and that the aggressive questioning constituted assault. Does he have a case?

Can an HR professional have personal liability for employment decisions?

03/31/2014
Q. As an HR professional, do I have personal liability for my participation in employment decisions?

How should we handle pay when employee works unauthorized overtime?

03/27/2014
Q. What can we do if our employees worked overtime despite our instruction that they shouldn’t?

Age bias settlement: Need ADEA waiver, too?

03/27/2014
Q. My company was sued by a former employee for age discrimination under the California Fair Employ­­ment and Housing Act (FEHA). We’re settling the case and including a waiver of the right to proceed under FEHA. Do we need an ADEA waiver, too?

Does Minnesota require allowing time off for employees to attend school activities?

03/25/2014
Q. One of our employees came in two hours late today, without an advance call. When he got here, he told his supervisor that he needed “school leave” for the morning. Can we discipline him for being late?

Changing hours: Must we talk to the union first?

03/19/2014
Q. Our employees recently voted for a union and we are now negotiating. Our policies say full-time em­­ployee status starts at 30 hours per week. All of our full-time employees currently work 40 hours per week. We want to decrease the hours of some employees (about 25% of them) from eight to six per day. Do we have to bargain with the union on this change or can we just notify them?