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Informed Employer: August 29, 2018 Informed Employer: August 29, 2018

Informed Employer: August 29, 2018

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More States Introducing Bills to Restrict Sexual Harassment NDAs
Confidentiality agreements have come under fire during the #MeToo movement as one way abusive men have been able to hold on to their jobs, and keep harassing more women. State lawmakers introduced bills in at least 16 states this year to restrict the use by private employers of non-disclosure agreements in sexual harassment cases, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
(Source: MPR, 2018-08-27) Read the full article
Judge Rejects Trump's Move to Ease Firing of Federal Workers
A federal district judge in Washington struck down most of the key provisions of three executive orders that President Trump signed in late May that would have made it easier to fire federal employees. The ruling is a blow to Republican efforts to rein in public-sector labor unions, which states like Wisconsin have aggressively curtailed in recent years.
(Source: The New York Times, 2018-08-25) Read the full article
Spouses of H-1B Visa Holders Closer to Losing Right to Work
A policy change to strip spouses of H-1B visa holders of their right to work has entered its final review, with senior leaders in the Department of Homeland Security moving toward approval, according to a new court filing. The proposed rule change was set in motion by President Donald Trump's "Buy American and Hire American" executive order, according to Homeland Security.
(Source: The Mercury News, 2018-08-22) Read the full article
IRS Allows Employees to Use 401(k)s to Repay Student Loan Debt
The Internal Revenue Service released a private letter ruling that could make it easier for employers to use their 401(k) plans to assist their employees who are repaying student loan debt. The recently issued ruling affirmed that, under certain circumstances, an employer can link the amount of its 401(k) matching contributions for an employee to the amount of student loan repayments made by the employee outside of the plan.
(Source: MarketWatch, 2018-08-27) Read the full article
Senator Pushes Through Main Street Employee Ownership Act
Buried in a $717 billion defense bill signed recently by President Trump was a provision previously known as the Main Street Employee Ownership Act. The provision was tacked on by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York. Her goal: help more workers own a piece of the company they work for.
(Source:, 2018-08-26) Read the full article
Disney, Union Agree to Boost Minimum Starting Pay to $15 by 2021
Thousands of Walt Disney World employees would receive raises under a new contract settlement between the company and a group of unions that increases the minimum starting pay to $15 an hour by 2021, capping nine months of tense wage negotiations that led to large protests in Central Florida. The unions, which represent 38,000 service employees at Walt Disney World -- about half the total number working at the park -- announced the agreement, calling it "historic."
(Source: The New York Times, 2018-08-25) Read the full article
More Businesses Becoming Inclusive in Their Hiring Practices
After years of exclusion, people with non-traditional work histories are finding new job opportunities thanks to businesses that are embracing more inclusive hiring practices. That approach means that applicants who have experienced homelessness, incarceration, addiction, as well as refugees and those with a pending immigration status, can have a much better shot at meaningful employment.
(Source: Mashable, 2018-08-22) Read the full article
More Companies Adding Pet-Friendly Policies to Lure Employees
More businesses are adding pet-friendly policies to attract workers, thanks to a tight labor market. Even if an employer doesn't have a formal policy, some are allowing workers to use paid time off when pets become ill.
(Source: CBS News, 2018-08-27) Read the full article
Employers, Employees Differ on How Old is 'Too Old' to Work
Many employees plan to work past age 65, but will their employers help them to do so? In many cases perhaps not, as employers and workers don't agree about how friendly the workplace is to older employees, according to a new study from the nonprofit Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.
(Source: SHRMOnline, 2018-08-24) Read the full article
Considering a Job Candidate's Salary History Can Be Problematic

Michael Blickman

You are an executive who has an important position to fill. After reviewing resumes from job candidates, you select a female who appears highly qualified. You interview her, like her and want to hire her.

Now, you wonder just how much you are going to have to offer her to convince her to join the company. The salary negotiation dance begins and you ask her what she is currently making. She responds honestly, “I make $75,000 in my current position.” Taking her cue from Charlotte Westerhaus-Renfrow who, in this column a few weeks ago, appropriately encouraged women to ask for more, your candidate does just that.

Finally, you offer $80,000, and she accepts. But what you didn’t tell her is that you hired a male employee last month for the same position, but you are paying him $85,000 because he made $80,000 in his prior job, $5,000 more than the female candidate. You have just fallen head first into a dangerous legal trap, and you may be surprised that the outcome might just depend on the state in which the female employee will be working.

Read more here.


NEW Statutory Provisions Impacting Indiana Worker's Compensation

Ann Stewart

Effective July 1, 2018, the Indiana Worker's Compensation Act contains new provisions impacting claim management practices. The Act contains new electronic filing requirements and compliance deadlines. In addition to the statutory revisions, the Indiana Worker’s Compensation Board communicated new guidelines for settlements and Nurse Case Managers.  

Here are highlights of the changes of most interest to employers, administrators and insurers.

First Report of Injury – New Filing Requirement

The largest change for employers and insurers is the Act's requirement to file a First Report of Injury Form (State Form 34401) within seven days of the employer's knowledge of an injury, (actual, alleged or reported) that causes the need for medical care beyond first aid. The previous requirement was to file a First Report after the first day of lost time or disability. The First Report must be filed via Electronic Data Interchange (EDI).

Read more here.


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