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By Camille Toney, Molly Batsch on October 23, 2013 at 4:13 PM

BackgroundChecks The EEOC’s April 2012 Enforcement Guidance on employers’ use of criminal record screens has led many employers to question, or at least revisit, their background review procedures. This guidance not only urges employers to conduct “targeted” background screens (which consider the nature of each crime reported by prospective employees, the nature of the job in question, and the time elapsed after each crime reported), but further calls employers to engage in individualized assessments of those individuals screened out because of a background review.

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By Dennis Collins on April 17, 2013 at 12:47 PM

Performance Evaluation Attendance PaperworkClients frequently seek advice concerning tips for avoiding and/or defending against employment discrimination claims. Read this blog entry for some tips you should consider.

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By Kevin McLaughlin on April 8, 2013 at 3:26 PM

OSHA Accident Free PosterOSHA has continued its proactive approach to targeting and inspecting businesses in 2013. It’s not like it used to be, when you could expect to be clear of an OSHA inspection if you kept your employees happy (i.e., no complaints to OSHA) and safe (i.e., no reportable accidents). If you met those two goals not long ago, then you were likely in the clear to avoid OSHA inspections in any given year.

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By Molly Batsch on April 1, 2013 at 3:25 PM

Drug test results sheetThe use of medical marijuana is currently authorized in 18 states and the District of Columbia. Two of these states—Colorado and Washington—have also legalized the recreational use of marijuana. Despite these recent changes in state law, marijuana remains illegal under federal law, creating confusion as to how the passage of these laws will affect employers’ rights in the workplace.

The simple answer is that state laws legalizing marijuana (whether for medicinal or recreational use), do not change an employer’s rights. Federal law still prohibits the use of marijuana, even for medicinal purposes. 

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By Marcus Wilbers on March 25, 2013 at 3:24 PM

Man with smartphone in business buildingThe Northern District of Illinois recently certified* a class action in a case alleging that employers should pay overtime wages for time employees spend checking their e-mail after hours. The police officer who sued the city of Chicago claims the Police Department had an “unwritten policy” requiring officers to check their BlackBerry after normal working hours without compensation. Checking their BlackBerry, the officer claimed, constituted substantive police work and the department would have been significantly less successful in accomplishing its goals without regular required BlackBerry use.

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