Question: We give year-end bonuses based on attendance, and employees with a certain number of absences are disqualified. If an employee took FMLA leave, can we count those absences against them and withhold the attendance bonus? Answer: Yes, if you apply the rubric used to qualify employees for the bonus consistently across all “equivalent leave…

Ask the Experts: Flu and FMLA

Question: Is the common flu considered a serious health condition under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)? Answer: Most cases of the common flu do not meet the definition of “serious health condition” and would not be eligible for Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave. Some cases of the flu, however, are severe…

Avoid Women at All Costs?

Robin Shea, partner with leading national labor and employment law firm (and ThinkHR strategic employment law partner) Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP, explains that avoiding harassment at work does not mean avoiding women at work. Better to be Prudent with Everybody An article this week in Bloomberg said that men on Wall Street were getting the message…

Alaska Occupational Safety and Health Penalties Increased As of October 20, 2018, the maximum civil penalties for violations of the Alaska Occupational Safety and Health (AKOSH) standards increases as follows: Willful: minimum $9,239 per violation, maximum $129,336 per violation. Repeat: maximum $129,336 per violation. Serious: maximum $12,934 per violation. Other than serious: maximum $12,934 per…

2019 San Jose Minimum Wage Increase The City of San Jose announced that beginning January 1, 2019, employers subject to the San Jose Business License Tax or that maintain a facility in San Jose must pay to each employee who performs at least two hours of work per week in San Jose at least $15…

Sexual Harassment Notice On November 14, 2018, the Delaware Department of Labor, Division of Industrial Affairs released its mandatory sexual harassment information sheet as required by the Delaware Discrimination in Employment Act. A law against sexual harassment passed in 2018 extends protections to all individuals in all workplaces, including employees, applicants, apprentices, staffing agency workers,…

Equal Pay Act and African Americans On November 28, 2018, the Illinois State Congress overrode the governor’s amendatory veto and amended the Equal Pay Act. With the amendment, the act now provides that where an African-American employee and a non-African-American employee perform the same or substantially similar work on jobs that require equal skill, effort,…

St. Paul Minimum Wage Ordinance On November 14, 2018, Mayor Melvin Carter signed the City of Saint Paul Minimum Wage Ordinance and created a citywide minimum wage, dependent upon employer size. The City of St. Paul and macro businesses (more than 10,000 employees) must pay the city minimum wage as follows: $12.50 per hour effective…

New York City For-Hire Vehicle Drivers Earnings On December 4, 2018, the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) announced the passage if its Driver Income and Transparency Rules to increase the earnings of for-hire vehicle (FHV) drivers who work for large app-based car service companies and provide benefits for other drivers. The rules…

Cryptocurrency Tax Payments In November 2018, Treasurer of Ohio Josh Mandel announced that Ohio businesses may pay their state business taxes with cryptocurrency (Bitcoin only). This is remarkable because Ohio is the first state in the United States to accept cryptocurrency payments. Those eligible to pay taxes in cryptocurrency via the state’s website (OhioCrypto.com) are…