An employee has been copying pornographic images off the Internet and showing them to co-workers. Another has been using company e-mail to distribute racist jokes. And several others have downloaded some hot new software onto their office PCs-violating federal copyright laws. It’s bad enough these employees are surfing the Net instead of working. But you […]
You know that inappropriate comments or behavior in the workplace can put you on the hook for big sexual harassment damages. But in a new twist, a law firm employee has won more than a quarter-million dollars because her boss used her to help keep his out-of-the-office, extramarital affair a secret. The jury’s award shows […]
A California court of appeal has ruled that when making personnel decisions, you can give preference to employees with lower salaries over those with higher ones as long as you do so for financial reasons. This is true even though it may result in your older workers being more negatively impacted. Despite the new ruling, […]
Last year we warned about “testers”-individuals who act as job applicants for the sole purpose of scoping out whether your hiring practices are legal. A new report has concluded that testers can help expose bias in hiring, and the government now plans to deploy these undercover applicants in California workplaces.
The basic rule in California is that employees can quit or be fired at any time, with or without cause. If you’re like most employers, you’ve reinforced this concept by including “at-will” statements in your employee handbooks and application forms. But you could find yourself on the wrong end of an employee lawsuit if your […]
It’s not uncommon for employers to lay off workers and then outsource their job responsibilities to save money on employee benefits and other expenses. But now, a new U.S. Supreme Court ruling has exposed some serious hidden risks in this and similar practices.
Have you ever fired an employee and then worried that he would join a competitor and “bad mouth” your organization to important customers or vendors? One employer in that situation went a little too far in trying to control the damage to its reputation-and found itself ordered to pay the former employee $1 million […]
Has an employee ever complained about offensive conduct by a salesperson, customer or vendor? If that behavior veers toward sexual harassment, you may have to step in and stop it. But how you handle the situation may make the difference between resolving the problem, losing a good customer, or worse-being sued.
Every time you fire someone, you run the risk of being sued. But your chances of getting hit with a big jury verdict or a hefty legal bill defending yourself can be drastically reduced with proper planning. That’s what one employer found when, because it carefully laid the groundwork to dismiss an employee accused of […]
Sales are down. Expenses are up. You’ve tried everything and it looks as if your only alternative is to eliminate jobs. These not uncommon circumstances can turn into a high-stakes gamble, particularly because the graying of the American workforce puts you at risk for expensive age bias claims. So when you’re facing a restructuring, it’s […]