What's New on HR.BLR.com
HR.BLR.com's What's New page is where you will find all of the most recent content added and updated to the site in the last 14 days. See the latest news, updated topic analysis, training sessions, and more.
HR Regulatory Analysis
We are continually updating our state and national regulatory analysis to help you keep up with the changing regulations. See the updated section on the What's New page, below, to find all of the updated topics.
New Documents
  • HR Checklists:
    This sample HR Fair Labor Standards Act checklist, “FLSA Exemption Checklist,” can be used to ensure that your workers are classified properly. Download this Fair Labor Standards Act sample checklist to your computer or print it out.
  • HR Guidance:

    Does your state have its own minimum wage? Does your state have exemptions to its minimum wage requirement? Find out using this state-by-state comparison chart.

    For an updated list of State and City minimum wage laws see the Updated Minimum Wage Chart.

  • HR News:
    By Alexandra Oxyer
    A court recently granted an employee's request for summary judgment (dismissal in her favor without a trial)—something that rarely happens—on her federal wage and hour claim. It found that the on-call nurse was entitled to overtime pay even though she wasn't always "working" and was able to do personal errands such as grocery shopping, reading, and talking with friends.
  • By Jane Meacham, Contributing Editor
    Look to the past to predict the future when it comes to pension investing, defined benefit (DB) retirement plan sponsors are urged by global advisory and broking firm Willis Towers Watson (WTW) in a new paper on investment actions recommended for 2019.
  • By Michael Futterman and Jaime Touchstone, Futterman Dupree Dodd Croley Maier LLP
    A class of cable service technicians sued their employer to collect payment for the commuting time they spent transporting equipment in company cars under a voluntary program.
  • By Jaclyn T. Gans, Elam & Burke, P.A.
    In November, in its first opinion of the term, the Supreme Court of the United States unanimously held that the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) applies to all public employers, even those with fewer than 20 employees.
  • By Todd B. Castleton
    The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has proposed regulations that would change the rules for hardship distributions from 401(k) and 403(b) retirement plans by replacing the facts-and-circumstances test for determining hardship eligibility with a three-part general standard.
  • By Raanon Gal
    A recent Georgia Court of Appeals decision is important because very few cases have interpreted the Restrictive Covenant Act (RCA), passed in 2012, and none had addressed what language or omissions would render a noncompete clause unenforceable. Consequently, Georgia employers should consider clearly designating a geographic area in a noncompete provision.
  • By Kelly Smith-Haley
    Imagine former employees winning a $27 million judgment for defamation against your organization, only to have the outcome reversed by the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals (whose rulings cover all Illinois employers). That’s what happened to Allstate Insurance Company. Here’s why the court said the original verdict was wrong.
  • By Brad Cave
    Sexual harassment can affect your workplace in many significant ways—for example, by lowering morale, increasing absenteeism and turnover, and decreasing productivity. But those consequences are often difficult to measure and quantify, making it harder to show how they affect your company's bottom line.
  • By Jane Meacham, Contributing Editor
    The Society of Actuaries’ (SOA) latest annual update of its mortality improvement scale reflects a slight decline in U.S. life expectancy, which could reduce employer balance-sheet liabilities for pensions by about 0.3% on average for plans electing to use it.
  • By Lauren E.M. Russell
    One of the most exciting aspects of employment law is the inexhaustible list of ways that employees find to get themselves—and their employers—into trouble. Recently, we've observed an uptick in electronic security breaches, which makes the start of 2019 a perfect time to refresh ourselves on the "do's" and "don'ts" of cybersecurity.
  • By Marianne Koepf, Carothers DiSante & Freudenberger LLP
    In the last several months of 2018, the California Legislature sent Governor Jerry Brown 1,217 bills for his consideration before he left office at the end of 2018. The governor has signed 1,016 of those bills into law. The following article offers a summary of some of the most important bills Governor Brown recently signed. All of the new laws took effect on January 1, 2019, unless otherwise indicated.
  • By Tammy Binford, Contributing Editor
    While federal employers wait out the impasse that has sent many of their employees home and others to work without pay, private-sector employers shouldn’t think they’re immune to the impact of the partial federal government shutdown.
  • By Damian A. Myers
    The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) requires that COBRA premiums be set for a 12-month period referred to as the “determination period.” Periodically, employers and plan administrators may need to (or want to) change the determination period. The question then becomes how this change can be made without adversely affecting existing qualified beneficiaries.
  • By Brendan N. Gooley
    Connecticut’s new law prohibiting employers from asking job candidates about their salary history took effect on January 1, 2019. The legislation is intended to remedy gender-based pay gaps, and it bars employers from asking applicants how much they currently earn or previously made.

  • The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) is stepping up enforcement of the limits on permissible wellness incentives. For example, Dorel Juvenile Group Inc. agreed to pay a $14,563.50 penalty and return a total of $145,635 in tobacco surcharges to employees who originally had to pay them.
  • By Bruce Cross
    Retired NFL players sued the league, claiming it distributed controlled substances and prescription drugs to them in violation of state and federal laws and the manner in which the drugs were administered left them with permanent injuries and chronic medical conditions.
  • Prior to 2014, there were only 4 paid sick leave laws in effect nationwide. That number has since grown to more than two dozen laws, covering several states, cities, and counties.  The infographic below provides a broader picture of which states, cities, and counties offer paid sick leave laws.
  • By Jane Meacham, Contributing Editor
    The balance sheet for the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s (PBGC) single-employer plan moved into the black in the latest fiscal year (FY) to continue a trend of better results, but the multiemployer plan remains in deficit and at risk of insolvency in as few as 7 years, according to the agency’s FY 2018 Annual Report.
Updated Documents
• Yes, but only if federal disability laws cover this employee.
• Possibly, but only if there is a state disability law that applies to this type of injury.
• Yes, if the employee requests an accommodation based on a disability.
• No, nothing is required because the employee was injured on personal time.
• Yes, if the employer has an existing light-duty position open.
• Both B and D are correct.
• Both C and E are correct.
 HR Strange But True
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