Informed Employer: NO MICKEY MOUSE ISSUE—DISNEY GIVES EMPLOYERS A REMINDER ON THE PROPER USE OF CRIM Informed Employer: NO MICKEY MOUSE ISSUE—DISNEY GIVES EMPLOYERS A REMINDER ON THE PROPER USE OF CRIM

Informed Employer: NO MICKEY MOUSE ISSUE—DISNEY GIVES EMPLOYERS A REMINDER ON THE PROPER USE OF CRIMINAL HISTORY CHECKS

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High Court Sends Union Health Benefits Case Back to Appeals Court
The Supreme Court ruled that a chemical company may be able to cut the health benefits of its retired workers, unanimously reversing an appeals court ruling that said the benefits had vested for life. The Supreme Court returned the case to the appeals court, telling it to use ordinary principles of contract interpretation to determine whether the collective bargaining agreement at issue had granted free lifetime health care.
(Source: The New York Times, 2015-01-26) Read the full article
Tech Firms Agree to $415M Settlement Over Employee Hiring Practices
Apple Inc. and Google Inc. reached a new settlement over claims they and other Silicon Valley companies conspired to avoid hiring one another’s employees, after a judge concluded their first proposal didn’t offer enough money for affected workers. The agreement, whose terms weren’t disclosed in a court filing, again hinges on the approval of U.S. District Judge Lucy H. Koh in San Jose, California, who in August rejected the initial $324.5 million accord.
(Source: Bloomberg, 2015-01-15) Read the full article
Some Employers Say Same-Sex Couples Must Marry to Get Benefits
Until recently, same-sex couples could not legally marry. Now, some are finding they must wed if they want to keep their partner's job-based health insurance and other benefits.
(Source: Kaiser Health News, 2015-01-20) Read the full article
Report Finds Over Half of Big Employers Unprepared for ACA Rules
ADP, a leading global provider of human resources and payroll services to employers, released research that showed more than half of large employers -- those with 1,000 or more workers -- are not prepared to comply with all ACA regulatory requirements.
(Source: NJBIZ, 2015-01-15) Read the full article
Most Companies Use Automated Features to Help 401(k) Participants
The majority of companies now rely on automated features in their 401(k) plans to help participants either take immediate or eventual advantage of company matching funds. That's according to an Aon Hewitt survey of 100 companies in which 29 percent of the respondents said they aren't relying on their employees to save enough to meet company matching funds requirements.
(Source: BenefitsPro, 2015-01-21) Read the full article
43 Million Workers Don't Receive Paid Sick Leave
Coming to work sick can be miserable, but millions of American workers can't afford to stay home. Nearly 43 million private-sector workers don't get paid sick leave, according to the White House.
(Source: CNNMoney.com, 2015-01-20) Read the full article
Most Employers Don't Require Workers to Get Immunizations
Five workers at Disneyland have been diagnosed with measles in an outbreak that California officials trace to visitors at the Anaheim theme park in mid-December, but Disney requires workers to get routine vaccinations as a condition of employment. Most employers concerned about the spread of communicable disease in the workplace do exactly what Disneyland is doing now: They strongly encourage, but don't require, immunizations.
(Source: Bloomberg Businessweek, 2015-01-22) Read the full article
Study Finds Employers Not Prepared for Gen Z Workplace Demands
Employers just aren't ready for Generation Z's workplace demands, according to around 47 percent of existing employees, a new study found. Existing staff believe that Gen Z, now aged 14 to 19, will push for greater work-life balance, increased workplace flexibility and more rapid advancement opportunities, than older generations, a report this week by Randstad Workmonitor shows.
(Source: CNBC, 2015-01-16) Read the full article
Ruby Tuesday Accused of Bias Against Male Bartenders, Servers
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a federal lawsuit in Eugene that accuses the Ruby Tuesday restaurant chain of unlawfully discriminating against its male bartenders and servers by hiring only women for summer positions at its Park City, Utah, location. The lawsuit seeks an injunction that would prevent Ruby Tuesday from depriving men of employment opportunities based on their sex; an order forcing the company to eradicate its wrongful employment practices; and to pay losses suffered by two male workers denied jobs in the summer of 2013.
(Source: The Oregonian, 2015-01-23) Read the full article
 
 
 
Headlines
NO MICKEY MOUSE ISSUE—DISNEY GIVES EMPLOYERS A REMINDER ON THE PROPER USE OF CRIMINAL HISTORY CHECKS

 

Skip Adams

A lawsuit on file in a California state court against Walt Disney Parks and Resorts underscores the importance of understanding and complying with the requirements of the Fair Credit Reporting Act ("FCRA") when obtaining background reports on job applicants. It has become a common practice for employers to seek information on applicants' histories, including prior employment, credit and criminal records, before deciding whether to make job offers. Some states and municipalities have passed laws and ordinances imposing restrictions on when in the interview process prospective employers may consider applicants' criminal records. Others prohibit receipt or consideration of information about expunged convictions. However, in the Disney case the primary issue is whether the employer violated the notice requirements of the FCRA, a federal law applying to employers throughout the U.S.

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It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year! H-1B Cap Season is Here!

Every year, employers hire foreign nationals in positions for which they cannot find sufficient U.S. workers. And, every year, many employers and foreign nationals are disappointed when they come up short in the annual H-1B visa lottery. On April 1, 2015, USCIS will begin accepting petitions for H-1B temporary workers for Fiscal Year 2016. If approved, H-1B status will become effective no earlier than October 1, 2015. There are only 65,000 new H-1B visas available each fiscal year (with an additional 20,000 reserved for foreign nationals with a U.S. master's degree or higher). Employers who want to sponsor foreign professionals should initiate H-1B petition processing now. Last year, USCIS received approximately 172,500 H-1B petitions, and the year before that, 124,000 petitions were received. When this occurs, a computer-generated "lottery" is used to select petitions against the numerical cap. The cap will likely be exhausted in the first week of available filing again this year.

The H-1B annual quota applies to foreign nationals who do not presently hold H-1B status, including recent graduates who are working during their one year of "optional practical training." This cap does not apply to filings for H-1B workers who have already been counted against the annual H-1B quota, which includes requests for extensions of stay or changes in employer sponsor. Certain types of employers are exempt from the H-1B annual quota, including institutions of higher education and their related or affiliated nonprofit entities (including some hospitals), and nonprofit research organizations or government research organizations.

All H-1B employers are obligated to pay the H-1B worker a minimum prevailing wage for the offered position, and the category is only available for professional-level employment which typically requires a minimum of baccalaureate level education in a specific discipline. This classification is widely utilized by U.S. companies on behalf of foreign engineers, information technology professionals, physicians, professors, executives, managers and other professionals and is often the only available option for temporary employment in the U.S.

To discuss H-1B eligibility and requirements, please contact Jenifer M. Brown, Christl P. Glier or any member of Ice Miller's Immigration Group.

 

 
 
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