Employment & Labor Law

Full-Service vs. DIY Background Check Programs

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The shark species, as we know them, have been around for about 400 million years; they were dwelling the oceans when dinosaurs were roaming the land. Growing up on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, there is a saying: “We provoke a shark every time we get in the water where sharks happen to be. The ocean is not our territory – it is theirs.”

IRS Reverses Policy, Requires Individuals to Certify Individual Mandate Compliance

On Oct. 13, 2017, the IRS reversed a recent policy change in how it monitors compliance with the ACA’s individual mandate. For the upcoming 2018 filing season (filing 2017 tax returns), the IRS‎ will not accept electronically filed tax returns where the taxpayer does not certify whether the individual had health insurance for the year. In addition, paper returns that do not certify compliance with the individual mandate may be suspended pending receipt of additional information, and any refunds due may be delayed.

The Cost of Negligence in Hiring

employment screening

When hiring, it takes more than just checking a resume for previous job experience, education, and skills. You must also ensure that employees who are hired will not put other employees, customers, clients, or members of the general public, at risk while on the job. If an accident or incident does occur, employers are in danger of being accused of negligence in hiring practices. This legal accusation can end up being a very costly one for businesses.

Guidelines Regarding Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Employees

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An individual’s transgendered status is not yet a “protected characteristic” like race, national origin, or religion under federal or Michigan law. However, the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, courts, and commentators are increasingly concluding that transgendered individuals are entitled to expansive legal protection. That has resulted in more companies taking a proactive approach and instituting formal policies for transgender employees.

Profanity from Employees: Surprise, Sometimes Allowed

angry guy

In an era when it seems that anything goes, can an employee get away with using obscenities against his or her boss? What if the employer learns of an employee’s Facebook post attacking a supervisor, announcing, “Bob is such a nasty *&%# - don’t know how to talk to people!!!!!  *&%# his mother and his entire *&%# family!!!!  What a LOSER!!!!”

Religion Discrimination

Some studies have counted over 124 different religions practiced in the United States and these religions range from only 10 adherents to tens of millions.  When responding to requests for accommodation for religious practices, though, the size of the religion is irrelevant. The wrong answer to the employee who is a member of a 10-member tribe can create as much liability as the wrong answer to an adherent of a major religion.