EEO-1 reporting deadline is today!

Alert! Alert! If you haven’t submitted your EEO-1 report yet, you have only the rest of today to do it! (The deadline is September 30, 2010.)

The Standard Form 100 (EEO-1) requires covered employers to report a count of their employees by job category, and then by ethnicity, race, and gender. EEO-1 report must be filed by:

  • Private employers with 100 or more employees

or

  • Federal contractors with 50 or more employees AND at least one government contract of $50,000 or more.

Not sure if this is something you need to do? Need help getting it done? The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has a few helpful resources to make this process easier for you. On their website, you’ll find:

  • Who must file
  • How to file
  • When to file
  • FAQs

To visit the EEO-1 Survey pages, click here.

For Iowa employers: new ruling on shared work plans for Iowa employers

A few years ago, very few companies were participating in Iowa’s shared work program, which allows employers to reduce full-time employee’s weekly hours in lieu of layoffs. But with the struggles we’ve gone through during the recession, flexibility is becoming more of a need. The Iowa legislature has responded accordingly and changed the rules in favor of employers.

Previously, Iowa employers were limited to only one work share plan during a two-year period, but the new law (which took effect July 1, 2010) removed this limitation. Employers must still meet certain requirements, but the increased flexibility will certainly help out many companies. For more details on the law, read “Recent Changes to Iowa’s Unemployment Insurance Law Regarding Shared Work Plans” by our partners at Dickinson Mackaman by clicking here.


For New Jersey Employers: Inflexible leave policies – lessons to be learned

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is helping us learn a lesson on inflexible leave policies. The EEOC recently brought a suit against the Garden State’s own Princeton HealthCare System. According to the EEOC, more than a dozen employees with disabilities requested a leave accommodation and were subsequently fired, which the EEOC claims violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations unless it would cause “undue hardship” to the employer.

There is no final ruling in this case yet, but our partners at Jackson Lewis have already pointed out some important lessons from this case. Be sure to read “EEOC Continues Its Attack on ‘Inflexible’ Leave Policies” by clicking here.

For additional information on the case, read the press release from the EEOC (“EEOC Sues Princeton Healthcare System for Disability Discrimination”) by clicking here.


For Massachusetts employers: Mass restricts employers’ use of criminal record information

The hiring process can be one of the most difficult parts of the employment cycle. There’s a whole list of things you can and cannot do. Well, the list just got a bit longer. On August 6th, Governor Patrick signed into law the “CORI Reform Bill,” which prohibits employers from asking applicants about their criminal record in an initial application.

Our partners at Ogletree Deakins have written an article (“Massachusetts CORI Amendment Requires Employers to Take a Close Look at the Job Application Process”) that will help you understand this new law (which goes into effect November 4, 2010). It breaks down:

  • employment-related changes
  • which employers it will affect
  • what employers should do.

To learn more about this topic, read the article by clicking here.

The Bedbug Craze

There’s a new dance craze sweeping the nation – the Bedbug Itch! New York, Detroit, and Cincinnati have drawn public attention for their bedbug problems, but cases are being reported just about everywhere! Because bedbugs are “hitchhikers” (they move around by riding on furniture, luggage, and clothing), the problem won’t be staying at home. These pesky pests are taking their show on the road and into workplaces. That means employers need to understand their responsibilities.

Our partners at Jackson Lewis have written “Employers don’t need to worry about bedbugs – or do they?” which answers the following questions:

  • Do employers have an obligation to maintain a bedbug-free workplace?
  • What are some recommendations for employers?
  • If an employee reports exposure to bedbugs, such as an infestation in their home, can the employer require the individual to stay home or take measures to ensure that clothing or items brought to work are bedbug free?
  • Can an employee who misses work due to exposure to bedbugs at work be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits?

To read the answers to these questions, check out the article by clicking here.

For additional information on this hot new bedbug trend and how it’s effecting businesses, read “Bedbugs Bad for Business? Depends on the Business” by Kate Murphy of the New York Times by clicking here.


Introducing the Fair Playing Field Act

Since President Obama entered office earlier this year, we’ve been hearing reports that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is making a special effort to ensure your workers are properly classified as employees or independent contractors. But just last week, a new bill, the Fair Playing Field Act of 2010, was introduced in Congress. Among other things, this legislation would:

  • require those who use independent contractors to provide the independent contractors with a written statement on their tax obligations, which labor laws do not apply to them, and their right to seek a determination from the IRS on their status
  • raise penalties for misclassification.

At this point in time, we don’t have any more information on the likelihood that this bill will become law, but we will sure to keep you posted when we find out more.

For more information on this topic, read “New Legislation Aims to Tighten Employee Misclassification” by clicking here.


Affordable Care Act – New info and model notice- available

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has brought on a host of new healthcare responsibilities for employers and we’ve been waiting for something in writing for some time. Ask and you shall receive! The Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration has posted new information so you’ll find:

  • Answers to frequently asked questions on the ACA. Click here to check these out.
  • Revised Model Notice of Adverse Benefit Determination. This notice is to be given when an individual is declined benefits when requesting treatment or service. Click here to download the notice.

For additional information on the ACA, visit HealthCare.gov by clicking here.

You can also find the Affordable Care Act timeline by clicking here.