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News Flash: Legislature Starting To Heat Up

This year looks to be another blockbuster in terms of new employment-related legislation. Next month, we’ll have a full report from Sacramento and Washington, including details on a federal proposal now supported by the beleaguered U.S. Department of Labor to overturn its recent opinion letter and exempt stock options from overtime pay calculations. We’ll also update […]

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News Notes: New IRS Rules Make Retirement Plan More Employer Friendly

Rigid administrative requirements make many employers hesitate to participate in so-called 401(k) safe-harbor plans. But these programs can prove valuable because they permit you to avoid costly discrimination testing requirements by following a specific formula for contributions. Now the IRS has issued new rules that add some flexibility. Significant changes include revising the way matching […]

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News Notes: Latest Developments In Stock Option Controversy

In the February issue of CEA, we reported on a controversial U.S. Department of Labor advisory opinion that said you might have to include stock option profits in an hourly worker’s base pay and retroactively recalculate overtime figured on the new pay rate. The ruling has come under fire not just from employers, but also […]

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Retirement Benefits: Proposed New Rules Would Increase Obligations For Small Pension Plans

A pension plan with fewer than 100 participants is generally exempt from the complicated and expensive accounting and reporting requirements that apply to larger programs. But in response to recent reports suggesting that small pension plans are vulnerable to employer embezzlement and misappropriation of funds, the federal government has proposed new rules requiring you to […]

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Age Bias: Bank Manager’s Careless Remarks Lead To $430,000 Judgment For Laid-Off Worker

Bank of America recently learned the perils of terminating workers over age 40. One of its managers offhandedly suggested that a laid-off older employee retire, then later promised to help her get an interview for another bank job. However, he never followed through. Unfortunately for the bank, a jury believed that these incidents, along with […]

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Sex Discrimination: Employer To Pay High Price For Glass Ceiling

In recent years, government agencies and female employees alike have increasingly focused on shattering the corporate glass ceiling. Now, a new California Court of Appeal decision demonstrates that failing to review your promotion practices before a gender-bias complaint surfaces can be an expensive mistake.

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Wage And Hour: Department Of Labor Says Retroactive Overtime Calculations Required When Stock Options Exercised

In an advisory opinion that could give employers headaches, the U.S. Department of Labor says you may have to include stock option profits in an hourly worker’s base pay and retroactively calculate their overtime using the new pay rate. Although it’s unclear just how far-reaching this opinion will be, it raises some complicated issues that […]

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News Flash: Worker Sues Employer For Failing To Set Up A “Green” 401(k) Plan

A senior programmer who was fired allegedly because he complained about his employer’s 401(k) investment options has filed a religious discrimination lawsuit. James Salsman, a former employee of Veritas Software in MountainView, claimed it would violate his Quaker beliefs if his money were invested in businesses that produce weapons. Veritas’ retirement plan limited employees to investing […]

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News Flash: Store Managers Win Multimillion-Dollar Overtime Settlement

Mervyn’s California has agreed to shell out $7.3 million to resolve overtime claims brought by 1,600 store managers who charged they were improperly classified as exempt from overtime. The managers contend they spent most of their time stocking shelves and performing other nonmanagerial duties. Mervyn’s previously agreed to pay $4 million to settle similar lawsuits […]

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News Flash: Employer Jailed Following Investigation Of Pension Plan

Russell Crawford, the former owner of Valley Building Materials in Canoga Park, was ordered to spend six months in jail plus 10 months of home confinement for embezzling more than $700,000 from employee pension plans. Following a joint investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor and the FBI, Crawford reportedly admitted draining the company’s profit […]

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