Connecticut Labor and Employment Law Journal

Connecticut Labor and Employment Law Journal

Category Archives: Employer Policies

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FMLA: A Painful Reminder of the Importance of Supervisor Training

Posted in Employer Policies
The importance of training supervisors on how to recognize and deal with employee leave issues cannot be overstated. And here’s a painful example of why… Grace, an employee at a group home where she provided support to residents with mental impairments, was unexpectedly hospitalized due to a mental health condition. Grace had her son call… Continue Reading

Responding to Requests for Employee Leave for Disaster Relief Efforts

Posted in Employer Policies, Uncategorized
In response to Hurricane Harvey’s destruction in Texas and Louisiana, employees may wish to take time off from work to participate in the cleanup efforts.  Employers may wonder what their obligations are when faced with requests for leave. Public Sector State employees who are certified disaster service volunteers with the American Red Cross may, with… Continue Reading

Legislature Expands Pregnancy Protections, Malloy Set To Sign

Posted in Employer Policies
Just before the end of the legislative session, Public Act 17-118: An Act Concerning Pregnant Women in the Workplace, passed and is expected to be signed by the Governor.  Effective October 1st, this Bill amends Connecticut’s existing Pregnancy Discrimination Statute, Conn. Gen. Stat. § 46a-60 by expanding the employment protections provided to pregnant women and… Continue Reading

2d Circuit Court of Appeals reverses $2.6 million jury verdict in disability discrimination case

Posted in ADA, Employer Policies
A pharmacist was terminated after he claimed he was unable to administer vaccinations to customers.  Christopher Stevens sued Rite Aid for discrimination, retaliation and failure to accommodate under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other state non-discrimination laws.  The jury awarded him $2.6 million, including $900,000 in non-economic damages. By way of background, Rite… Continue Reading

Recent EEOC Decision Highlights the Importance of Dealing with Third Party Harassment

Posted in Employer Policies
A recent judgment awarded $250,000 in compensatory damages (including emotional distress) resulting from an employer’s inaction against a customer who for more than a year engaged in a pattern of harassment including inappropriately touching the employee and stalking. In EEOC v. Costco, the EEOC proved that Costco failed to take steps to protect an employee… Continue Reading

The Future of Drug Testing and Employer Drug Policies

Posted in Employer Policies
This election, seven states and the District of Columbia passed expansive marijuana laws that permitted the recreational use of marijuana or cannabinoids.    This means that within these states and the District of Columbia people can openly smoke or ingest cannabis with no criminal repercussions. While Connecticut has not embraced this libertine attitude toward marijuana use,… Continue Reading

Public Act 16-67: New Hiring Requirements for Board of Education Personnel

Posted in Employer Policies
Effective July 1, 2016, local or regional boards of education, governing councils of state or local charter schools and inter-district magnet school operators (collectively “BOEs”), are going to have to follow new requirements for hiring education personnel.  The state legislature recently enacted Public Act 16-67 (“the Act”) in response to a new provision in the… Continue Reading

As Election Season Heats Up Employers Need to Tread Lightly About Employee Speech

Posted in Employer Policies
Election season is here and the evidence can be viewed all around an employer’s campus: from bumper stickers on the cars in the parking lots; buttons festooned to employees; even screen savers on company computers; now more than ever broadcasting your support is easy.  However, with that support may come problems for the workplace. Connecticut’s… Continue Reading

Connecticut Law Limits Criminal Inquiries on Employment Applications

Posted in Employee Benefits, Employer Policies
On January 1, 2017, Connecticut will “ban the box” for private employers, as well as public employers.  “Ban the box” laws prohibit employers from asking questions about criminal background on employment applications, with some exceptions.  Such laws are becoming increasingly common in states and municipalities throughout the United States. The new Connecticut legislation, known as… Continue Reading

Portion of Affordable Care Act Requiring Automatic Enrollment for Some Employer Plans Repealed

Posted in Employee Benefits, Employer Policies
Since the Affordable Care Act’s enactment in March, 2010, employers with 200+ employees have been awaiting the implementation of regulations that would explain the automatic enrollment rule.  Employers with 200+ employees would have had to enroll employees in the company health care plan automatically, while allowing them the option to decline coverage.  Most employer plans… Continue Reading

Connecticut Mandates Sexual Harassment Training for Supervisors – Are You in Compliance?

Posted in Employer Policies
Employers with 50 or more employees in Connecticut must provide sexual harassment training to supervisors within six months of the individual assuming a supervisory position.  While other employers are not mandated to provide such training, it is strongly encouraged to do so. Refresher training is encouraged, but not required.  It is also beneficial to provide… Continue Reading

Two Significant Changes to Law Surrounding Internships

Posted in Employer Policies, Wage & Hour
Connecticut employers need to be aware of two significant changes in the law surrounding internships. The first is a new state statute including unpaid interns in the protections afforded to employees with respect to discrimination and harassment. Employers should update their handbooks and training materials to ensure that interns receive the same protections as employees… Continue Reading

New Connecticut Law is Double Trouble for Employers

Posted in Employer Policies, Wage & Hour
Wage violations are about to get more costly for Connecticut employers.  A new statute, effective October 1, 2015, requires courts to award double damages plus court costs and attorneys’ fees if an employer has failed to pay an employee’s wages (including minimum wage and overtime owed), accrued fringe benefits, or arbitration award.  The new law… Continue Reading

New Law Will Restrict Employer’s From Accessing Applicants Facebook Page

Posted in Employer Policies
The Connecticut General Assembly recently passed Senate Bill No. 426 (2015) titled “An Act Concerning Employee Online Privacy.” This new law will prohibit employers from requiring employees or applicants to:  (1) provide their user name and password or any other access to an employee’s personal online account; (2) access an online account in the employers… Continue Reading

Snow Days Come With Employer Obligations – Are You Prepared?

Posted in Employer Policies, Wage & Hour
For employers, preparing for winter weather includes ensuring all employees are paid properly on snow days.  Many employers are surprised to learn that their payroll does not take a snow day when their employees do.  While snow days are probably the most common application of the principles discussed in this article, these rules apply to… Continue Reading

The New Connecticut Provisional Pardon Law and What you Need to Know

Posted in Discrimination, Employer Policies
On October 1, 2014 Public Act 14-27 went into effect which revamped Connecticut’s provisional pardon law (Conn. Gen. Stat. § 54-130a).  The revisions were based on the recommendations of the Connecticut Sentencing Commission and under this new bill: “a provisional pardon or certificate [of rehabilitation] creates a presumption of rehabilitation. The bill requires the state… Continue Reading