Tag: off-duty activity

Can They Do That? Firing Employees for Off-Duty Conduct

by T. Harold Pinkley Participating in last year’s Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia—an event that involved several groups usually identified as the “alt-right,” along with groups protesting the marchers—has proven to have unforeseen and unintended consequences, including job loss, for some of the people involved. This article examines how you can or should […]

Holiday party tips for employers

by Bonnie M. Boryca The end of the year brings various obligations for employers, along with the opportunity to spread holiday cheer to employees, whether it’s through end-of-year bonuses, time off from work, or company-hosted holiday parties. Unfortunately, examples of litigation arising out of holiday parties are not hard to find. Company-sponsored parties frequently lead […]

Do you have a Weiner in your workplace? Disciplining employees for off-duty misconduct

by Lauren E.M. Russell The most fortuitously named figure in modern politics is embroiled in yet another scandal: Former Congressman Anthony Weiner is back in the news because of a third round of sexting allegations. He has been suspended or terminated from two freelance writing positions because of the recent allegations against him. While a […]

Employer can—and should—investigate off-duty dispute between employees

Sometimes employees just don’t get along, and employers know they need to intervene when harassing and even threatening behavior occurs on the job. But should the employer launch an investigation if coworkers trade harsh words after hours away from the workplace?  That was a question put to a group of attorneys who focus on workplace […]

To fire or not to fire: Remember arrested employee may not be guilty

Learning that a trusted employee has been arrested and accused of theft is always alarming, but the question of what to do—suspend, terminate, or wait and see how the case plays out—adds even more stress. Recently, several attorneys who represent employers were asked what to do in such a situation. Their advice: Suspension or termination […]

NFL Vikings’ Adrian Peterson as a case study: Employers as judge and jury when employees misbehave?

by Laurie Jirak With the publicity surrounding the drawn out saga following the arrest of Vikings Pro Bowl running back Adrian Peterson, many employers may be asking what options they have to discipline or even terminate employees for allegedly engaging in unlawful conduct outside the workplace. What considerations should have an impact on your employment […]

Office politics: why you shouldn’t care who likes Ike

by Timothy M. Barber With another round of contentious elections upon us, employers should brush up on federal, state, and local laws related to political affiliation discrimination.  The political season Fall in America: football, brightly colored leaves falling, and another cycle of contentious elections. Recent elections have involved important issues affecting businesses and employees—issues that […]

Where there’s smoke, you’re fired: tackling rising costs of tobacco use

by Holly K. Jones, J.D., If there’s one thing on which smokers and nonsmokers can agree, it’s that smoking is an expensive habit. While tobacco companies and trade groups challenge coupon and discount bans on cigarettes, employers have taken up a different fight against the rising costs of smoking.   For several years, employers have begun […]

Employer social media policies and employee off-duty conduct

Employees’ postings on social media have been  called “online water-cooler talk,” essentially comparing it to office gossip. But most HR professionals have had to learn one big difference the hard way. Water-cooler talk doesn’t leave a permanent record, and social media does.  One way the two do compare is the common topic of supervisors. Unfortunately, […]