Human Resources News Letter

Best of Citrus Heights 2010
Voted the best HR Consulting Company for 2010


Contacts

Allardyce Resources LLC
PO Box 2031
Carmichael, CA 95609
P 916.487.4344
F 916.644.8989

E-mail

 


Common Human Resource Questions

Below are the most common questions Allardyce Resources has recently received and their corresponding answers. Have a question for us? E-mail and we’ll get back to you shortly!

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Our Company needs to find some ways to save on payroll.  I am planning to reduce all employee's hours by 4 hours per pay period. Are there any implications or special rules I will need to follow?

A company always has the right to schedule employee work shifts to meet the company's needs, so scheduling fewer hours will work just fine for your hourly (non-exempt) employees. 

The DLSE just issued a new opinion letter that will also enable you to reduce exempt level employees in conjunction with a reduction in work hours, provided that the change is due to severe financial conditions within the company, and that the reduction in hours and pay is temporary in nature.  Once the economic hardship improves, the pay must be restored to the prior salary.

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I recently hired a couple of new managers, do I have to conduct a special session of the Sexual Harassment Training for Managers that I already conducted this year with the rest of my employees?

Under California law, if you employ more than 50 employees, and have any employees in California, you must provide a two (2) hour interactive training session for managers and supervisors who supervise any employee in California.  The training must be provided by a qualified trainer for new managers and supervisors within 6 months of their date of hire and then re-training for the new manager may then happen on schedule with the rest of your managers in the following 2 year retraining session.

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One of my employees just asked for time off to spend with her husband who is home on leave from his deployment in the middle east.  We are really busy at this time of year and I really can't afford to have her take time off, can I deny her request?

Under the new California law, e mployers with 25 or more employees are now required to provide up to 10 days of unpaid leave for the spouse of any active duty military service person who is granted leave time during their deployment during a period of military conflict.  Because of the existing laws regarding Registered Domestic Partners, this law would apply to the Registered Domestic Partner of a military service person as well.

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1I have an employee who just started to work for us, but now is not able to provide us with the documentation required for an I-9 form. Do I need to pay the person for the hours they have already worked for the company?

The law requires that all employees complete an I-9 within three days of commencing work for an employer, and that they provide documentation of their right to work in the United States within that three days. The documents that are acceptable are outlined on the I-9 form. 

If an employee is unable to provide appropriate documentation within the three days, the employer should not permit the employee to work any further hours until the employee provides the documentation. The employer is required to pay the employee for the hours worked. If the employee has not been able to provide a valid Social Security card, the employer should pay the employee and report the wages on their DE-6 and 941 showing the employee’s name using a Social Security number of 999-99-9999.

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With the new law if California prohibiting the use of a cell phone while driving, as an employer am I required to provide my employees with a hands free ear piece for company cell phones?

If you provide employees with a cell phone that is expected to be answered while employees are driving, you should also provide them with a hands free device for use in the car.  However many companies do not require the use of the cell phone while driving, and their policies specifically prohibit employees from talking, sending text or emails on a cell phone while driving if that use requires them to take either hand off the steering wheel.  Enforcing that policy may be very difficult, and liability for any accident while the employee is driving during work hours may fall to the employer. So providing the hands free head set may be a helpful way to prevent an accident.

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I have an employee who is going to be returning from active duty in the military.  Our office has changed significantly since this employee was called to active duty over 2 years ago.  Now we don't have a position open for this employee, can we let the employee know that we have no available positions and let them go?

Under the USERRA law, military service members returning to the workforce are entitled to reinstatement with their former employer provided they are ready and able to return to work within a 5 year period of time. There are very few exceptions to this requirement, and considerable burden of proof placed on the employer to demonstrate a valid reason not to return the service member to the position and status that they would have gained has they remained in your employment during the entire course of their military service. This requirement includes the sonority level, promotional opportunities, as well as wage increases that would have (and did occur) for other employees in the same of equivalent position(s) as the person who served in the military. Any employer who feels that they may have a legitimate basis for refusing to rehire an employee returning from military service would be wise to consult with their labor attorney before taking action with the returning service person.

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