Business Solutions

 

10 key points every business owner and senior executive should know about employment law

By Phyllis J. Towzey, Esq., BCS in Labor and Employment Law

Know your employee handbook and policies

  • EEO Statement
  • Sexual Harassment Policy
  • Rules for Employees
  • No expectation of Privacy

Know what union rights also protect non-union employees

  • New NLRB rules protecting facebook posts
  • Concerted activity
  • Co-worker present during disciplinary meeting

 Know whether Non Compete Contracts are right for you.

  • Purpose, Scope and Enforceability
  • Agreements re Nonsolicitation, Confidentiality and Nondisparagement

Know your obligations under Federal, State and Local Employee Civil Rights laws.

  • Age, Race, Sex, National Origin, Disability, Religion, Marital Status
  •  Local ordinances re sexual orientation
  •  FMLA and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act
  •  Reasonable Accommodations under the ADA

Know Overtime Law: Who is an exempt employee and who is not?

  • It’s YOUR duty to keep the records
  • The laws have changed – make sure your classifications are up to date
  • Don’t use “Comp Time” for hourly employees

 Know how to terminate an employee properly.

  • When too much niceness can hurt you
  • Document the file
  • Should you escort them out of the building? Factors to consider.

Know when and how to use a Severance Agreement

  • When being generous can save you $
  • Include a valid release
  • Different approach for key executives, middle management, and staff
  • Special rules apply for company-wide or department-wide layoffs.
  • Notice required for plant closings or sale of business

Know unemployment appeal hearings

  • Know how the law defines misconduct
  • Be strategic about whether to contest benefits
  • New provisions in law this year affect who gets benefits
  • Know what to provide for the hearing
  • Get it right the first time
  • How to conduct yourself at a hearing

Know what records to keep and what records to destroy

  • Sarbanes Oxley (SOX) legislation
  • Federal Court Discovery Rules
  • Electronic Document Retention

Know and Understand “Employment at Will”

  • The central concept in 43 states including Florida
  • Your defense against employee entitlement
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