Understanding Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
It is the law. Employers are required to make "reasonable accommodations" for persons with disabilities. Employers are not allowed to discriminate against employees with disabilities. Companies need to make special arrangements for their workers who may be physically or mentally unable to perform certain tasks.
Expense Reports and Cell Phone Charges
Especially now that many employees are working from home, remember that the law requires that employers reimburse their employees who use their cell phones for work purposes. Employers have a few options in order to remain in compliance with the law.
Telecommuting and remote “work from home” policy
For many of you, working from home has become the new norm. It is important that employers craft a telecommuting policy for all those employees working off-site, at home, to establish guidelines and expectations. Certainly, it won’t be easy for those employees who simultaneously must take care of their small children at home, due to school closures. Therefore, leniency, compassion and understanding should be at the forefront of your thoughts during this time.
Investigations of harassment and/or discrimination
When an employer receives a complaint of alleged harassment or discrimination, they are required by law to conduct an internal investigation. Employers should make sure that their employees feel respected and safe at work. Therefore, if any employee addresses issues of harassment or discrimination, employers should take the matter seriously and not have it overlooked.
HR policy: Smoking in the workplace
Smoking in public areas is against the law. Smoking in the workplace puts employers at risk for violating health and safety laws. Smoking laws in the workplace apply to employers who have more than five workers. Smoking restrictions state that employees are not permitted to smoke inside a public building or in an outdoor area 20 feet of a main exit.
Human Resources: Compliance vs. best practice
Compliance with Employment Law is required: HR best practices are not. Employment and labor laws include both federal and state laws. Federal laws are overseen by the U.S. Department of Labor and apply to all organizations whereas each state has their own set of laws that companies are required to abide by. Best practices, although not required, are helpful methods and techniques that bring quality results to the workplace.
Expense Reports and Cell Phone Charges
The law requires that employers reimburse their employees who use their cell phones for work. Employers have a few options in order to remain in compliance with the law.
Safety tip: How to properly lift
Proper lifting is an essential part of many different jobs. Whether you manage a factory, a restaurant, or any other business, at some point, employees are likely to be asked to lift heavy items. Making sure that they are lifting properly can reduce the risk of injury and even make lifting easier.
Employees and the military: What is Civil Air Patrol Leave?
If one of your employees is a member of the US Air Force, you must provide them with time off without pay for military service. Under the Civil Air Patrol Employment Protection Act, employers are required to provide any employee who is part of the California Wing of the Civil Air Patrol with time off to attend emergency operational missions.
Know the Law: Pregnancy Disability Leave Laws
It’s the law – PDL (Pregnancy Disability Leave) must be offered to any employee who is disabled due to pregnancy, childbirth or any related medical conditions, regardless of the length of employment. Employers must provide employees with up to 4 months of time off, without their job being placed in jeopardy. This time off is unpaid by the employer, however the employee may claim benefits payment through the Employment Development Department (EDD).