Rick Fazio, Vice President of Sales at Employco, recently had an article featured in the December issue of Food Industry News magazine titled “The Power of Relationships in the Restaurant Industry.” In this piece, Rick explores how strong ties with employees, customers, and vendors are essential for success.
California Prohibits Questions About Off-duty Marijuana Use – Almost a year to the day after enacting Assembly Bill (AB) 2188, which provides employment protection for job applicants and employees who use marijuana outside of work, California has enacted additional new protections related to legalized marijuana. Specifically, Senate Bill (SB) 700, enacted Sept. 19, 2023, adds protections against marijuana-related questions for job applicants. Both new laws go into effect on Jan. 1, 2024. Read more: California Legal Update
Federal, state, and local governments adopt labor and employment laws to protect the rights, health, and compensation of workers. As a general rule, federal laws supersede state and local laws. However, state and local laws can supplement or provide additional protections to employees and impose additional requirements that employers must follow. When a conflict exists between federal and local requirements, the U.S. Department of Labor instructs employers to follow the law that provides the highest protection or greater benefit to the employee.
We recently released several new State Employment Law Guides designed to provide employers with a reference of key state labor and employment laws. Employers can use the content in these guides to learn more about their obligations and liability under state law. When possible, these guides include direct links to agency guidance and official posters, notices, and forms.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released Notice 2023-75, containing cost-of-living adjustments for 2023 that affect the amounts employees can contribute to 401(k) plans and individual retirement accounts (IRAs).
Beginning Nov. 1, 2023, employers are required to use the newest version of Form I-9. This form, provided by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Citizenship and Immigration Services, has been available since August, but the prior version was accepted through Oct. 31, 2023. Employers that continue to use the outdated Form I-9 after Nov. 1 will be subject to penalties.
The updated Form I-9 includes updated instructions and many notable changes, including the following:
Sections 1 and 2 have been reduced to a single sheet.
The preparer/translator certification area has been moved to a standalone supplement (Supplement A) that employers can use as necessary for initial verification or recertification.
Section 3 (Reverification and Rehire sections) has been moved to a standalone supplement (Supplement B) that employers can use as necessary.
The list of acceptable documents now includes some acceptable receipts, guidance, and links to information on automatic extensions of employment authorization documentation.
Winter is the busiest time for many organizations. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, retailers added 509,300 jobs during the 2022 holiday season alone.
Many employers hire seasonal workers to help manage the demands of the holiday season. For example, online retailers often see a surge in activity around the holidays, as do organizations in hospitality. Yet, bulk hiring workers can present unique challenges for employers, who often must recruit and train employees in a short period of time. While these employees may only be employed for the holiday season, they represent an employer’s brand and can meet the demands and obligations of customers, which ultimately affects an organization’s bottom line.
The call from workers for pay transparency and equity has never been louder or more essential than it is today. Pay transparency is the practice of openly sharing compensation information, such as pay rates and salary ranges, with applicants, employees, and sometimes the public; pay equity is the process of reducing salary disparities among workers performing substantially similar work.
Employees value pay transparency and equity because they provide workers with a clear understanding of how their compensation is determined, helping to develop trust with their employer and improve morale, job satisfaction, and overall well-being. They can also empower employees to make more informed career decisions, negotiate competitive wages, and advocate for themselves effectively.
California Extends Reach of Prohibition Against Restrictive Covenants – On Sept. 1, 2023, California adopted Senate Bill (SB) 699 and expanded noncompete employee protections by declaring that noncompete agreements that restrain individuals from engaging in a lawful occupation are void, regardless of where and when the contract was signed. SB 699 becomes effective on Jan. 1, 2024. Read more: California Legal Update
The EEO-1 Report is a federally mandated survey that collects workforce data categorized by race, ethnicity, sex, and job category. Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act (Title VII), employers with 100 or more employees and certain federal contractors must report this data to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) by March 31 every year.
However, the collection of this data from 2022 has been delayed. The EEOC expects to open the portal for employers to begin entering 2022 information on Oct. 31, 2023. The deadline for employers to complete their submissions of 2022 information is Dec. 5, 2023.
The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires employers to compensate their non-exempt (hourly) employees for all hours of work. To comply with this requirement, employers must keep track of the number of compensable hours employees work during a workweek.
Time in Training, Meetings, and Lectures – In general, employee attendance to lectures, meetings, training programs, and similar activities is considered compensable time unless all of the following are true: