401(k) Plans: Can Interns be Excluded?

As summertime rolls around and employers prepare for a fresh crop of interns, the question may arise whether those interns can be excluded from participating in the 401(k) plan. The answer is generally yes, but different conditions must be satisfied depending on whether the intern job classification results in an indirect service requirement. An employer […]

Bracing for Impact: California Supreme Court Strengthens Whistleblower Protections

The broad interpretation of “disclosure” under the California Labor Code now includes information already known by an employer. The prohibition on retaliation against employees who make protected disclosures will be strongly enforced. Employers should stay up-to-date with whistleblower laws and regulations to avoid legal issues related to retaliation. In a landmark decision, the California Supreme […]

EEOC Issues New Resource On Artificial Intelligence Use In Employment Decisions

As the EEOC is well-aware, employers now have a wide variety of algorithmic decision-making tools available to assist them in making employment decisions, including recruitment, hiring, retention, promotion, transfer, performance monitoring, demotion, dismissal, and referral. Employers increasingly utilize these tools in an attempt to save time and effort, increase objectivity, optimize employee performance, or decrease […]

The Psychology Behind Retention and How to Fix It

With a labor shortage that is not going away for at least the next two decades, the battle to hire and retain talent will remain in the headlines. Everyone has an opinion about why we have this shortage, why employees leave their jobs (51 million of them in the United States in 2022)[1], who is […]

Washington Amends Law to Protect Off-Duty Marijuana Use in 2024

On Tuesday, May 9, 2023, Governor Inslee signed into law Senate Bill No. 5123, which will protect prospective employees from discrimination in hiring due to their lawful, off-duty use of marijuana. With this law, Washington will join the growing list of states offering some workplace protections to workers who engage in “off-duty” marijuana use. The […]

Can an employee’s hostile, abusive, or offensive speech actually be protected and, if so, when?

In a 2020 decision, the NLRB changed the way it traditionally evaluated an employee’s hostile or abusive conduct that occurs during protected Section 7 activity and that leads to the employee’s discipline. In General Motors, 369 NLRB 127 (2020), the Board decided it would no longer apply long-established “setting-specific” standards to assess whether an employer wrongfully […]

Poster Rollercoaster: DOL Changes FLSA Notice Required at Workplaces

FLSA “Employee Rights” poster to remain compliant with the law. The FLSA is the Great Depression-era law that requires covered employers to pay minimum wage and overtime to non-exempt employees, among other requirements. In addition to the basic minimum wage and overtime requirements, the FLSA also requires that covered employers post and keep posted a […]

Best Practices for Handling and Documenting a Non-Performing Employee

Addressing an employee’s failure to meet performance expectations can be challenging for an employer. This article highlights best practices for handling and documenting a non-performing employee. As a threshold matter, it is important to note that there are initial steps an employer can take to minimize the potential for employee underperformance and to protect its […]

Vanderpump Rules Drama Offers Employers a Lesson in Office Dating No-Nos

Vanderpump Rules chronicles the life and times of the extremely attractive employees at former Real Housewife Lisa Vanderpump’s highly successful restaurants throughout greater Los Angeles. Bravo fans were shocked when reports recently surfaced that the mustachioed Tom Sandoval, co-owner of TomTom, was cheating (gasp!) on his longtime girlfriend, SUR Restaurant & Lounge employee and cast […]

Labor Board Returns to Prior Standard, Limiting Employers’ Response to Abusive Workplace Conduct

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has returned to its pre-2020 “setting-specific” standards for determining whether an employee’s abusive conduct is protected by the National Labor Relations Act. Lion Elastomers LLC II, 372 NLRB No. 83 (May 1, 2023). The decision applies retroactively to all pending “abusive conduct” cases. Overruling General Motors, 369 NLRB No. 127 (2020), the […]

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