Federal Labor Laws

New Form I-9 Effective July 17, 2017

New Form I-9 Effective July 17, 2017

  • 14th July 2017

Effective July 17, 2017, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will issue a new Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. While the new Form I-9 can be used immediately on release, the existing version is still valid for use until September 18, 2017 when all employers must use the revised version dated July 17, 2017 for all new employees.

The Form I-9 has been updated to include:

  • A revision to the name of the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices to Immigrant and Employee Rights Section.
  • Minor edit to the phrase “the first day of employment”, removing “the end”.

There are also revisions to the List of Acceptable Documents on Form I-9:

  • The Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240) has been added to List C.
  • All the certifications of report of birth issued by the Department of State (Form FS-545, Form DS-1350, and Form FS-240) have been combined into selection C#2 in List C.
  • All List C documents except the Social Security card have been renumbered.

The revised version of the Form I-9 will be available on our website.

Recommended Change to Ohio’s Unemployment Insurance Notice

  • 7th September 2016

Unemployment Insurance

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services has updated the Unemployment Insurance notice. Formerly known as Unemployment Compensation, the updated notice has changed the name from the center for unemployment to “OhioMeansJobs Center.”

Effective Date: 5/1/2016

The Osha4less.com Ohio All-In-One State and Federal Poster has been updated to include these new mandatory changes on the required postings.

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Mandatory Change to North Carolina’s OSH Notice and Recommended Change to Wage and Hour Notice

  • 10th August 2016

OSH (Mandatory)

The North Carolina Department of Labor has updated their OSH notice. Information regarding discrimination retaliation against an employee for raising a health or safety concern, filing a complaint, reporting a work-related injury or illness, or assisting an inspector has been added. Lastly, a new copyright description and revision date have been added.

Wage and Hour (Recommended)

The North Carolina Department of Labor has updated their Wage and Hour notice. A new fax number and copyright description have been added.

The Osha4less.com North Carolina All-In-One State and Federal Poster has been updated to include these new mandatory changes on the required postings.

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Changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to Take Effect on December 1, 2016

  • 20th May 2016

The publication of the Department of Labor’s final rule updating the overtime regulations governing the exemption of executive, administrative, and professional (“EAP“) employees from the minimum wage and overtime pay protections of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was announced on May 18, 2016. The final rule is to take effect on December 1, 2016.

The update increases the standard salary level required for exemption from $455 per week ($23,660 annually) to $913 per week ($47,476 annually) for full-time salaried workers, and highly compensated employees (HCE) total annual compensation requirement from $100,000 to $134,004 per year. This change will extend the right to overtime pay to an estimated 4.2 million workers who are currently exempt (and either gain new overtime protections or receive raises to the new salary threshold). Changes to the regulation also allows nondiscretionary bonuses and incentive payments (including commissions) to satisfy up to ten percent of the standard salary test requirements.

Updates for salary and compensation levels will take place every three years, commencing January 1, 2020.

For more information, visit the United States Department of Labor.

Recommended Change to the Federal FMLA Notice

  • 6th May 2016

The United States Wage and Hour Division has updated the Family and Medical Leave Act. The revised notice has a new format and summarizes information from the previous February 2013 version. Content regarding the definition of what a serious health condition is has been removed along with the notice’s posting requirements. In addition, the Wage and Hour Division has stated that, “The February 2013 version of the FMLA poster is still good and can be used to fulfill the posting requirement.” The notice’s new revision date is April 2016.

Effective date: 4/1/2016

The Osha4less.com Federal Poster has been updated to include this new recommended change on the required postings.

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Employer Responsibilities on Sexual Harassment Prevention in California

  • 29th April 2016

As part of the approved amendments made to the Fair Employment and Housing Act Regulations which went into effect on April 1, 2016, the amendments clarify an employer’s affirmative duty to take reasonable steps to prevent and promptly correct discriminatory and harassing conduct in the workplace and the penalties for failing to do so (Gov. Code, § 12940(k)).

Pursuant to § 11023(b) of the Act, employers shall provide employees a workplace free from prohibited employment practices. In order to maintain a workplace free of harassment, discrimination, and retaliation, the Department’s DFEH-185 brochure on sexual harassment, or its equivalent, shall be distributed to all employees. Additionally, a written prevention policy on harassment, discrimination, and retaliation shall be developed to include information on prohibited conduct, protected categories, a proper complaint procedure (which ensures employee confidentiality, timely response to complaints, impartial and timely investigations by qualified personnel, documentation and tracking for reasonable progress, appropriate options for remedial actions and resolutions, and timely closures), and makes clear that employees shall not be retaliated against for lodging a complaint or participating in an investigation.

Employers shall disseminate said written policies to all employees by one or more of the following methods:

  • providing a printed copy with an acknowledgment form to which employee shall sign and return;
  • sending via email with an acknowledgment form to which employee shall sign and return;
  • posting on a company intranet with a tracking system to ensure all employees have read and acknowledged receipt of the policies;
  • discussing policies upon hire and/or during a new hire orientation session; and/or
  • any alternative method which ensures employees receive and understand the policies.

The written policy shall be provided in English and any language that is spoken by at least ten percent of the workforce.

The Department of Fair Housing and Employment (DFEH) may independently seek non-monetary preventative remedies for a violation of Gov. Code,  § 12940(k), regardless of whether it prevails or fails on an underlying claim of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation (Code Regs. title 2,  § 11023(a)(3)).

Stay in compliance by issuing the sexual harassment pamphlets to employees. Osha4less also offers workplace harassment prevention training options that meet federal and state requirements and can help your organization achieve a respectful work environment free from harassment and discrimination.

Recommended Change to Pay Transparency Notice

  • 9th February 2016

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs has updated their Pay Transparency notice. A new layout has been created along with the addition of the logo for the OFCCP department. Lastly, contact information has been added onto the notice.

Effective date: 1/12/2016

“Notice of Coverage Options” Form Requirement

  • 24th September 2013

Are you ready?

Per federal law, employers must provide “Notice of Coverage Options” to every employee by October 1, 2013.

What is the “Notice of Coverage Options”?

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) – often called federal health care reform – requires employers to notify workers about the availability of the new Health Insurance Marketplaces.

What do I need to do?

Each employer must distribute the “Notice of Coverage Options” to ALL employees – full-time, part-time, seasonal, temporary, etc. – by October 1st. All employees must receive the Notice whether or not they are eligible for benefits at work. Going forward, employers are also required to provide all new hires with the notice within 14 days of their hire date.

Download the Notice and Get Ready to Your Employee’s Answer “Affordable Health Care Act” Questions!

If you are interested in purchasing a guide, to help you decipher the new form requirements you may purchase the material here.

Workplace Harassment Means Big Trouble. Are You Prepared?

  • 2nd May 2013

workplace harassment trainingThis month we are featuring our Harassment Training program to protect employers and employees from lawsuits and unlawful conduct in the workplace. There are many anti-discrimination laws in effect that protect employees from unlawful conduct. Workplace harassment is a form of discrimination and while not necessarily intentional happens on a day-to-day basis in harassment prone environments like restaurants, bars and office buildings. According to the U.S EEOC, Harassment is unwelcome conduct that is based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. Harassment becomes unlawful where 1) enduring the offensive conduct becomes a condition of continued employment, or 2) the conduct is severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.

Welcome to EveryCo, a fictional company in your industry.

Meet Roger, a respected, likable high-producing manager with a touchy feely style and edgy sense of humor. Everyone knows he’s got a good heart and doesn’t mean anything by it. Today, he’s meeting with Margo, an employee, about a promotion.  When Margo arrives, Roger’s on the phone, joking with a fellow manager about a gay employee who came in on casual Friday looking like “I Dream of Jeannie”. Margo’s embarrassed by the phone conversation and the picture on Roger’s desk of his wife on the beach in Rio. Enough said.

Margo’s easily offended. That irritates Roger and raises concerns re: the promotion. Roger speaks with her candidly, says she’s qualified, he wants to see her advance, but she’s uptight and distant, she makes people paranoid.  He says she needs to loosen up, be part of the team, show up at happy hour, the parties, the picnic. He jokingly says she needs to “liberate herself from that Catholic School upbringing”.

These are opening moments of a powerful, entertaining episode Kit Goldman and co-facilitator, Memo Mendez, perform in their interactive, “edutainment”-style training on Workplace Harassment — and It’s all downhill from there!

Think Roger’s behavior is over the top? Think it doesn’t happen — not here, not now in our enlightened, oh so “PC” workplaces? Please. Give me your rose colored glasses and get me a latte with an extra shot. That kind of situation and a vast number of other high-risk scenarios happen all the time, even in world class workplaces. It’s often unintentional, unrecognized, and unreported — until a lawsuit is filed or the EEOC comes calling.

It’s a ticking litigation time bomb which can be defused via meaningful, high impact, relevant training on Workplace Harassment which teaches:

  • Awareness
  • Recognition
  • Prevention
  • Response

So — any harassment in Roger’s office? Probably.  If so, Margo and Roger, like your employees and managers, have legal rights and responsibilities they need to exercise and fulfill. Do your employees and managers know how to recognize harassment and how to respond should it occur? You need them to!

Here are 3 core concepts our powerful, realistic, prime time training drives home like no other can:

1. Harassment is Unwelcome Conduct: If it’s welcome, it’s not necessarily harassment. But welcome to whom? Roger was in a private conversation with a fellow manager when Margo walked in. Maybe the conversation had sexual or homophobic overtones, but it was welcome to the people having it.  However, we work in an environment. Sound carries. Images carry. We can’t just think about what’s welcome in our direct interactions, but also to those in the work environment.

2. Intent vs. Impact: Harassment is about impact not intent. It’s defined 100% by the impact on the other person. Intentions are irrelevant. Like the NFL. You’re offside, you get caught, there’s a penalty, whether you meant it or not. As mentioned, Roger’s good hearted. He doesn’t mean anything by it. He’s just being himself.  Unfortunately, unless he’s enlightened, he’s a runaway train rumbling toward a cliff with the company’s good name and resources aboard.

3. Consenting vs. Welcome: If someone consents to something, it’s probably welcome, right? Let’s say you get off work, it’s dark, you’re in the parking lot, a stranger comes up behind you, puts a 9 MM to your head, says “give me your wallet or I’ll blow your brains out”. You going to give it up? Darn Skippy. Did you consent? Yes. Did you welcome giving up your wallet? Of course not. The law recognizes that in the workplace people consent to things they don’t welcome for a variety of reasons explored in the seminars on Sexual Harassment and Hostile Work Environment.Speaking of your wallet, when compared with the costs of lawsuits, settlements and compliance audits, Workplace Harassment training is incredibly cost effective.

And if, heaven forbid, you end up in court, your efforts at prevention and how management responded can play a huge role in the outcome.

Yet sadly, some employers choose not to do it. Here are some common reasons why:

  • Training will just stir things up
  • It’s a can of worms
  • Why open Pandora’s Box?
  • Let sleeping dogs lie

On this last, let me say dogs usually do wake up and when they do — training’s a very good thing.

Still not sure if you’ll roll out training on WORKPLACE HARASSMENT for your team? Check out this tiny sampling of headlines, then get in touch with us.

kit_promo2 (2)Kit Goldman is President and Founder of the Workplace Training Network, Inc., an OSHA4LESS.COM strategic partner, producing the most powerful, entertaining, interactive workplace training available. 

New Mandatory NLRA Posting Required after November 14

  • 12th September 2011

On August 25, 2011 the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued the final rule requiring nearly all private-sector employers to notify employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by posting a notice. The deadline for this new mandatory posting is November 14th. However the posting is not yet available and is yet to be published, with an expected release date of November 1st. Order your State and Federal Posters today and we will automatically mail your new NLRA posting as soon as it becomes available.