Archive | August 2009

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Employee Insurance Concerns Mounting!

On June 9, 2009, Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Co. released results of a nationwide survey that it conducted of 1,181 full-time employees.  Eighty-seven percent (87%) of the employees surveyed were enrolled in an insurance program provided by their employer or spouse’s employer.  Most of the respondents reported changes to their employer-provided insurance coverage.  The […]

Federal Job Preferences to Military Spouses

On August 12, 2009, the Office of Personnel Management issued guidelines that permit eligible spouses who apply for a federal job to ask that recruiters allow them to bypass the traditional hiring process.   An executive order issued by President George W. Bush established the guidelines in September, but the Obama administration delayed approving the guidelines […]

House Bill Proposes Increasing Penalties for Misclassifying Employees as Independent Contractors

On July 30, 2009, Representative Jim McDermott (D-Wa.) introduced the Taxpayer Responsibility, Accountability, and Consistency Act of 2009 (H.R. 3408).  The legislation would make it more difficult for employers to avoid employment tax liability if they have misclassified a worker as an independent contractor and significantly increase employer penalties in the event of the misclassification.

All-Inclusive ENDA Introduced in the Senate!

On August 5, 2009, a bipartisan bill (S. 1584) was introduced in the Senate that would provide employment discrimination protections to individuals based on their sexual orientation and gender identity. This is the first time that a transgender-inclusive version of the bill has been introduced in the Senate. The House introduced an inclusive version of […]

DOT Reinstates Direct Observation of Urine Testing Rule

On July 30, 2009, the Department of Transportation published a notice reinstating a 2008 final rule mandating that transportation industry workers in safety-sensitive positions submit to direct-observation urine testing for all return-to-duty and follow-up drug tests. Pursuant to the rule, collective bargaining agreements between employers and unions that prohibit or limit the use of direct-observation […]

Pending FMLA Military Family Leave Legislation

On July 30, 2009, Senator Christopher Dodd (D-Conn) and Representative Lynn Woolsey (D-Cal) introduced legislation entitled “The Supporting Military Families Act” (S. 1543/H.R. 3403).  The legislation would extend up to 26 weeks of unpaid leave to family members of injured veterans for five years after the veteran leaves service, provided the veteran develops a service-related […]