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  • HR Specialist: Employment Law
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Beware unintended bias against unmarried workers, applicants

A new study gives your single employees and applicants new ideas for a lawsuit. The study by consultant Challenger, Gray and Christmas says unmarried people …

Shutdown caused by sudden loss of business won’t trigger WARN Act

An automobile-parts manufacturer got a jolt when a major customer refused to pay for a shipment and ceased all future orders without warning. That forced the manufacturer …

Don’t stray from layoff procedures

A 65-year-old employee was laid off as part of a reduction in force. She claimed her supervisor had made age-related comments, and the company failed to follow its published RIF criteria …

The WARN Act: Notify staff before large-scale layoffs

The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act requires certain employers to give employees 60 days notice before a plant closing or mass layoff. Some states also have plant-closure laws that add additional mandates.

Be consistent in reasons for layoffs

When a Wisconsin company restructured, it laid off a 44-year-old customer service rep. None of her direct supervisors or co-workers took part in deciding which employees would be laid off. But …

Draft bulletproof waiver deals with 6 court-approved benchmarks

Courtney Melanson suffered two years of unwanted sexual advances by her supervisor at Browning-Ferris Industries (BFI). She took medical leave due to the stress and, when she returned, BFI assigned her …

Health Plan Cancellation Ends Your COBRA Obligation


Q. Our business recently was forced to implement layoffs—and most remaining employees walked off the job. All were given a COBRA notice, but only one chose to take the coverage. Since this was a group insurance policy and only one person will now be insured, the insurer is cancelling our policy. What’s our responsibility to that ex-employee? —G.B., Texas

Job-bias complaints reach new high

A rash of recession-induced layoffs in 2001 helped propel job discrimination complaints to their highest level in six years, according to new data from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). …

High court to weigh claims of ‘disparate impact’ by age

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether workers who claim age discrimination can base their arguments on the fact that older workers at the company, as a group, were …

Laying off the layoffs

Layoffs that aren’t handled well can trigger lawsuits, particularly if workers feel they weren’t treated fairly. But a recent survey shows that businesses are taking many steps to ease the impact. …