Human Resources

Three-Factor Test for Non-Compete Agreements

Non-compete agreements come in all shapes and sizes, and the reasons why an employer may want to consider non-competes is equally diverse.

The bottom line is that a carefully crafted non-compete agreement can provide employers with a useful tool to protect its competitive position in the market place, especially in an increasingly mobile age where employees are more willing to test the barriers of non-compete agreements.

Michigan courts recognize and enforce non-competes, provided they are:

You’re At-Will – You’re Fired

True or False: Human resource employees sit in their office and drink coffee/soda tracking their NCAA brackets all day, since their job is simple in an at-will employment state?  

True or False: Since Michigan is an “at-will” employment state, whenever you terminate an employee, just tell the employee that he/she is “at-will” and all your potential legal issues magically disappear.

Hopefully you answered “false” to both questions, because otherwise it becomes a very expensive proposition for you and your organization.  

Politicians Don’t Guide the Economy, You Do

Economic growth starts with the individual, not the state

MLive columnist Rick Haglund is skeptical about the state’s choices of favored industries, noting that much of the Michigan Business Development Program subsidies go to manufacturers. “[D]eluded by the recent resurgence of manufacturing jobs, state policymakers are doubling down on promoting Michigan as a state that makes things,” he writes.

However, everyone should be skeptical of the idea that the state can lead economic growth at all.

Effects of Same-Sex Marriage Rulings on Employee Benefits

On June 26, 2013 in United States v. Windsor, the United States Supreme Court opined that certain portions of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) - the act barring the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages - were unconstitutional. Consequently, same sex couples with a valid state marriage license are generally considered spouses under the new law.

Background Check Risks-Beware!

There seem to be a growing number of laws and individual state/county/city restrictions being placed on employers who want to build safe and reliable workforces via a program of background checks.  On top of this, employers are being sued left and right because they aren’t conducting background checks in compliance with federal and local laws.

Here are 3 very important items to keep in mind:

HR Harassment Scenario – Did You Violate Federal Law?

Imagine you are the Human Resources Manager at one of the “Top 100 Best Workplaces” in the state and that your company has a state of the art anti-harassment / anti-discrimination policy. You train all your employees about this policy every year demanding that employees treat each other with dignity and respect and have worked very hard to create a work environment where all employees know about, understand and believe that the company is sincere about providing a harassment/discrimination free workplace.

Is Pregnancy a Disability?

Although pregnancy is not defined as a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or the Michigan Persons with Disabilities Civil Rights Act (PWDCRA), a pregnant employee may suffer from complications that render her disabled or handicapped within the meaning of those statutes. Once a pregnant employee receives medical certification that she is disabled from working, she is likely protected under disability laws.