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Age Bias Claims: EEOC Clarifies Rules For Challenging ADEA Waivers

It’s not uncommon for employers to offer older workers early retirement or severance benefits in exchange for having them waive potential age-bias claims they might have under the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). But employees sometimes have second thoughts—after they have accepted the benefits. Now the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has issued new […]

News Notes: Mental Health Parity Rules Begin

A new federal law now in effect says that if you offer mental health benefits, they must have the same aggregate lifetime and annual limits as medical benefits. The law applies to employers with 50 or more employees. There’s an exemption for employerswho can show the parity requirements will increase their costsby more than 1%. […]

News Notes: Supreme Court Update

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that wage and hour cases filed in state court under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act can be moved to federal court at an employer’s request. Employers might prefer to have a case heard in federal court for a number of reasons, including the higher standard applied to jury verdicts. […]

News Notes: Government Clarifies COBRA Notice Delivery

Meeting COBRA election notice requirements can be tricky – and even a minor oversight can potentially be expensive. A recent opinion letter from the Department of Labor clarifies the process for providing COBRA election notices to households with more than one qualified beneficiary. If several beneficiaries live at the same address, you can send their […]

Bulletin Item: Workers’ Compensation Reform Developments Continue

The Assembly Insurance Committee was recently scheduled to vote on the controversial reform measure (ABX4 1) proposed by Gov. Schwarzenegger just after he took office in November. However, the committee postponed the vote, which likely would have resulted in the bill’s defeat. The governor and legislators have now entered into talks to reach a compromise […]

Bulletin Item: U.S. Supreme Court Takes On Age-Bias Case

The U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether age-neutral policies violate the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) if they adversely impact older workers. The federal appeal courts are split as to whether “disparate impact” claims—which allege that a neutral policy or practice had an adverse, although unintentional, impact on a protected group—are permitted under the […]

Feds Urge Employers to Prepare for Emergencies

The Department of Homeland Security, in partnership with the Advertising Council, has launched a campaign to educate small and mid-sized employers about engaging in emergency preparedness efforts to protect their employees, business operations, and assets. The program includes a website, http://www.ready.gov, with extensive information on emergency planning, including a sample emergency plan, emergency supplies checklist, […]

Ask the Expert: Can an employee’s adult child be covered on employee’s health plan if the child lives in his own home and files his own income taxes?

September 27, 2010 On and after March 30, 2010, both coverage under an employer-provided health plan and amounts paid or reimbursed under such a plan for medical care expenses of an employee’s child who has not attained age 27 as of the end of the employee’s taxable year are excluded from the employee’s gross income […]