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News Notes: Court Says Flu Was A Serious Health Condition Under FMLA

  A federal appeals court has ruled that an AT&T account representative who suffered from a bad case of the flu was entitled to FMLA leave because she was unable to work for more than three days and was treated twice. Kimberly Miller sued after she was disciplined and ultimately fired for excessive absenteeism. Although […]

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Health Reform Means Different Things for FSAs and HSAs

There is some persistent confusion over what the implementation of the health reform law means for health flexible spending accounts and health savings accounts. The short answer is that with one exception, employers and plan administrators must follow different steps for health FSAs and HSAs. Understanding these steps is crucial, because the time to prepare […]

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Congress Sees Self-funded Health Plans’ Financial Strength

Companies that self-fund health benefits are larger than companies that fully insure health benefits and their solvency is just as good as companies that fully insure, a government report required by the health reform law indicates. The reform law requires reports on the prevalence, solvency and quality of self-funded plans, with the stated goal of […]

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News Notes: Court Upholds San Francisco Domestic Partner Law

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld San Francisco’s landmark domestic partner benefits ordinance, which requires that companies doing business with the city must offer equal benefits to domestic partners and married spouses of employees. The court rejected a constitutional challenge by an Ohio company whose bid for a contract with the city was […]

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Wage and Hour: Important Meal Period Ruling from California Supreme Court

The California Supreme Court has handed down an important new decision, answering a wage and hour question that recently has plagued the state’s appeals courts: Is the required payment of “one additional hour of pay at the employee’s regular rate of compensation” for each day that an employer fails to provide mandatory meal or rest […]

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Prop 8 Upheld by California Supreme Court

On Tuesday, the California Supreme Court upheld the November amendment to the state constitution—Prop 8—that prohibits same-sex marriage. The court did, however, rule that the 18,000+ same-sex marriages already performed in California will remain legally valid.

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Looking Ahead to 2012 for HR

Get ready now for an aggressive NLRB; meanwhile, get your ADA house in order, say panelists at BLR’s Advanced Employment Issues Symposium (AEIS). Good news? It’s not too late to act.

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Accommodating Employees: Employer Agrees To Settle Suit By Hearing-Impaired Employee

A hearing-impaired worker in Los Angeles who requested a sign language interpreter for meetings–and instead was allegedly told by her supervisors to read lips and try harder–will receive $100,000 to settle her claim that her employer failed to accommodate her under the Americans with Disabilities Act. In a confidential settlement, the government employer also agreed […]

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What Can HR Managers Learn from Shirley Sherrod?

Just My E-pinion By Stephen D. Bruce, PHR Editor, HR Daily Advisor The unfortunate and embarrassing story of Shirley Sherrod’s ouster from the Department of Agriculture by Secretary Tom Vilsack has at least a small silver lining—it’s a stern reminder to HR managers to look before they leap. Sherrod was sacked after a video of […]

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News Notes: Age-Bias Cases On The Rise

According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, age discrimination charges are the fastest growing type of bias case. From 1999 to 2001, the number of age complaints filed with the agency increased 23.5%. The EEOC points out that age charges—most of which involve employment termination—typically spike in a poor economy as layoffs increase.

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