Tag: Expert HR Advice

Question:  I’m getting ready to hire a Vietnam Vet and he mentioned there may be a tax credit for the employer. Where would I find more information about this for a California employer? Answer:  As we understand it, there are some resources at both the federal and state level.  What follows below is the limited…

Question:  A client offers an HRA. If an employee has a prescription that is not covered by the group health plan, can the HRA reimburse it? Answer: Generally, prescription drugs and medicines are considered qualified medical expenses eligible for tax-favored treatment when reimbursed under an employer HRA, and non-prescription medicines (other than insulin) are not…

Question:  Do we have to pay an exempt employee additional compensation to travel on weekends? Answer: Federal and state laws exempt certain employees from wage and hour requirements, such as overtime pay.  An “exemption” means that the overtime law does not apply to a particular classification of employees. Properly classified exempt employees are paid a…

Question:   What should we be considering if we want to offer health benefits to summer interns?  The interns will be working full-time throughout the summer (3 or 4 months). Answer: First, take a look at your benefit plan documents/requirements to determine whether the plan allows for temporary employees to be offered benefits.  If the plans…

Question: Can I counsel an employee about wearing strong perfume in the office? Our View:  One of the touchiest subjects we handle as managers is the overall body odor issue – whether it is poor hygiene or overly strong perfume, it’s still tough as it is such an individual issue. Some individuals might believe that…

You probably have all of your plans in place for this year’s office holiday celebration to thank your employees for their contributions during the year.  Or maybe you have decided that this year you’ll skip the usual celebrations in favor of a more modest, low-key approach given the business climate.  Regardless of how you are…

Question: Can a child take intermittent FMLA leave to take his ailing parent to doctor appointments? This seems like an easy answer, right? Of course an employee can take FMLA leave for ailing family members…..but not so fast. Recent court cases have highlighted the distinctions between family members being absent from work to care for…

Question:  While the plant was shut down for a week, we paid our employees their accrued vacation in advance of the shutdown for that week.  Subsequently some of the maintenance employees were called into work.  We would like to compensate them with additional pay for the time spent working during their “vacation”; however, we would…

Planning team-building activities to boost morale and promote teams working better together are great ideas from an employee relations viewpoint. Staff attendance at professional games and/or sponsoring a company softball team or tennis/golf outing can help employees reduce stress and improve health while enhancing productivity, morale and teamwork. But what are the potential downsides? Do…

Question: Last week our offices were closed because of the major storm in Connecticut.  The power was out the entire work week. Do we need to pay our employees for the week?  If not, would they be eligible for unemployment compensation? Our View:  When your business closes early or opens late or just closes for…