Human Resources and Employee Benefits

EEOC Issues New FCRA Notice

Many employers elect to consider the backgrounds of applicants when making hiring decisions, such as investigating an applicant’s work history, education, criminal record, and financial history.  We note that employers must be careful to comply with state and federal laws that protect applicants from discrimination, but that is not the subject of this discussion. When…

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Companies Need to Review and Maintain Their 401(k) Plans

Depending on the size of your company and your qualified retirement plan, many of the plan functions are handled by third parties – administrators, consultants, recordkeepers, and investment fiduciaries, among others. There is no shortage of advice you can secure for your plan that will help the HR department with its administration and your participants…

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Is Your 401(k) Plan Part of a Controlled Group?

You may inadvertently put your 401(k) plan at risk if your company structure includes businesses that have common ownership and not all employees of all the businesses are given the same opportunity to participate in the plan. Under the tax code, businesses that are under common control may constitute a “controlled group.” All of the…

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Overtime Rules in Limbo

We last discussed the new overtime rules in August (“What Are You Doing About Overtime?“).  Since then, a new President has been elected, the Department of Labor (DOL) has been blocked from implementing the rules, and the Trump administration is now studying what to do about them. The new rules were scheduled to take effect…

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Board Agenda Topic: 401(k) Plan Status Report

When was the last time your 401(k) plan structure and compliance procedures were discussed at a Board meeting?  If you cannot remember the last time, or if you cannot remember the details of what was reviewed, then the topic belongs on an upcoming Board meeting agenda. While day-to-day administration of the plan would fall to…

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What Are You Doing About Overtime?

You probably know that the new salary threshold for the “white collar” exemption to overtime eligibility is going up (to $47,476) in a few months. But here is why just paying more than $47,476 per year may not solve your overtime issues: Exempt employees must be paid on a true salary basis – meaning their…

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Employee Handbooks under Fire

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) continues its assault on employee handbooks. A recent example involves Chipotle (as if they don’t have enough trouble). Chipotle terminated an employee for gathering signatures on a petition protesting working conditions. The NLRB ruled Chipotle’s actions violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by inhibiting the employee’s right to…

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