The Devil is In the Details: The Importance of Sound Non-Compete and Confidentiality Agreements

By:  Autumn L. Gentry Though it may mean a few frantic days and maybe more than one sleepless night, most companies can manage the loss of a key employee relatively well. However, the thought of a key employee going to work for a competitor and calling on the employee’s old contacts to divert business away …

RECORDING WORKPLACE CONVERSATIONS IN CANADA VERSUS THE UNITED STATES

By Eric Kay and Sara Jodka There has been a recent trend whereby one party to a workplace conversation secretly records it and then attempts to use it as evidence against the other party. Typically, but not always, the recording party is the employee. The law in Canada allows one party to a conversation to …

Worksite Enforcement Under the Trump Administration – What to Expect

The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (“IRCA”) put the burden of verifying that new hires are authorized to work in the United States squarely on the shoulders of United States employers.  Since IRCA was enacted on November 6, 1986, United States employers have been required to accurately complete and retain an I‑9 Employment …

The IRS Announces Updated Limitations Related to Employer Plans; 401(k) Contribution Limit Increases to $18,500 for 2018

The Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) announced cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for employer plans for tax year 2018. The IRS issued technical guidance detailing these items in Notice 2017-64, in addition to previous guidance in Rev. Proc. 2017-37 and Rev. Proc. 2017-58. Many of the limitations will change because the increase in the …

Retirement Plan Fiduciaries Can Save Money and Time by Paying Attention to the Details

Individuals responsible for the administration of a 401(k) retirement plan know that details, such as a participant’s date of hire or the number of hours worked, are important when determining an employee’s plan entry date. A lawsuit recently filed by the Department of Labor is a reminder that plan fiduciaries should also be paying attention …

Why Employers Should Avoid One-Size-Fits-All Handbooks

Every business is different and has different workplace issues and concerns that need to be addressed by the employee handbook. Because each workplace is so different, employee handbooks should be specifically tailored to address specific workplace concerns and issues, and also take into account federal, state, and local laws that govern that particular workplace. Application …

Avoid Title VII Pitfalls in Parental Leave Benefits – Offer the Same Parental Leave to Male and Female Employees

Many companies offer parental leave benefits above and beyond the 12 unpaid weeks required by the FMLA. However, well-meaning employers can run afoul of federal anti-discrimination laws by providing different parental leave benefits to fathers and mothers. Title VII bans employment discrimination on the basis of sex. 42 U.S.C.A. § 2000e-2. But recently there has …

SURVIVAL IN THE IMMIGRATION CULTURE OF DELAY AND SOCIAL MEDIA MINING: ADJUSTMENT INTERVIEWS

With the recent change by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to mandate in-person interviews for employment based adjustment cases along with changes to require the review of social media and to what constitutes a misrepresentation of intent at the time of a visa application or entry to the U.S., employers must recalibrate and intensify …

Why Do I Need a Plan Document for my Welfare Benefit Plan?

An employee comes into your office and requests a copy of the plan document for the medical plan. What document do you give to the employee? One of the basic ERISA rules is that all employee benefit plans must have a written plan document.  Under ERISA Section 402, a plan document must include these elements: …