9

Apr

2019

Traditional Benefits Are Not Enough - Employees Want More

Author: Sara Sosnowski

According to MetLife’s 17th Annual U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study 2019, 80% of employers agree that benefits play an important role in workplace culture, and 78% say that benefits even help employees to be more productive.  Benefits are also an important factor when it comes to attracting new talent with 6 in 10 employees citing benefits as an important reason why they joined their company.  But if benefits are so important, why are only 67% of employees satisfied with...

9

Apr

2019

Does a Pay Disparity Finding Mean That Pay Discrimination Occurred?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

The hottest issue in the EEO area is pay discrimination.  In the news it is often written that women earn approximately 20 cents or more less than a male counterpart.  When it is broken down by race, the disparity grows even larger.  However, does disparity mean discrimination?

12

Mar

2019

More Information on the Proposed Regulation on Exemption Salary Level Test Released

Author: Michael Burns

As reported last week in an ASE breaking news update, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its long-anticipated changes to its white-collar exemption regulations. The big change was a “split the baby” approach to resolving a regulatory agency overreach by the DOL back in 2016.

8

Mar

2019

U.S. DOL Sets Salary Level Test Threshold at $35,308/yr.

Author: Michael Burns

Late yesterday, the U.S. Department of Labor published its new proposed rule raising the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) “white collar” exemption to $35,308/year or $679/week from $23,660/yr. or $455/week. The salary level test is one of three criteria that must be met to legally exempt an employee from overtime and some recordkeeping requirements.

26

Feb

2019

Can Medicare-for-All be a Viable Solution?

Author: Anthony Kaylin

A number of Democratic contenders for president have signed on to the slogan, Medicare-for-All.  But there is confusion as to what it means and how to pay for it. 

19

Feb

2019

Which Unique Benefits are Being Used the Most by Employees?

Author: Heather Nezich

Employers are increasingly broadening their scope of employee benefits to meet the changing demands of the workforce. Telemedicine, employee discount programs, and elder-care resources top the list of most used employee benefits in 2018.

19

Feb

2019

Paid Time off for Parental Leave is on the Rise

Author: Kristen Cifolelli

While Michigan employers are preparing for the new Michigan Paid Sick Leave Act that takes effect on March 29th, another paid leave benefit is on the rise.  Employers offering paid parental leave benefits rose significantly between 2016 and 2018 according to SHRM.  Employers offering paid maternity leave increased from 26% to 35% in 2018, and paid paternity leave increased from 21% to 29% during that same time period.  Paid adoption leave increased from 20% to 28%, foster child...

22

Jan

2019

Fluctuating Workweek Method to Determine Regular Rate of Pay

Author: Michael Burns

Last week’s EPTW article, Keeping up on Your Fair Labor Standards Act Understanding, reviewed the recent Department of Labor Opinion Letter (FLSA 2018-28) outlining a legal method to calculate a regular rate of pay when more than one pay rate is paid to an employee. The Opinion Letter stated an employer may not arbitrarily set a regular rate from two or more pay rates that it uses to calculate overtime from. It must calculate the regular rate by averaging hours worked and the different...

14

Dec

2018

Breaking News - Governor Snyder Signs Michigan Minimum Wage and Earned Sick Time Laws

Author: Michael Burns

Late Thursday, Governor Snyder signed the Minimum Wage law (SB 1171) that takes Michigan’s minimum wage to a maximum of $12.05/hr. in 2030 and removed the future indexing of the minimum wage to inflation. He also signed the Earned Sick Time law (SB 1175) that implements paid time off for employee or family member illness, injury, domestic violence, and sexual assault. The new law applies to employers with over 50 employees.

4

Dec

2018

Michigan Paid Time Off and Minimum Wage Laws in Process of Amendment

Author: Michael Burns

The Michigan Legislature wasted no time addressing the amendment of the expensive and poorly constructed Minimum Wage and Earned Sick Time laws passed earlier this year. Last evening the State House of Representatives followed the Senate’s passing of both laws and sent them to the Governor's desk for signature.

27

Nov

2018

Michigan’s Paid Time Off Law, Whether Repealed or Amended, Compels Employer Review of Its Paid and Other Time Off Policies

Author: Michael Burns

As covered in the November 21st issue of EPTW, Michigan employers have to monitor what paid time off benefits will be required of them going forward. Will Michigan’s GOP-led legislature repeal the Michigan’s Earned Sick Time Act entirely or just amend it in order to relieve some of its expense to smaller employers? It appears that pro-business parties may just go for amending the law down to some “reasonable” degree.

20

Nov

2018

Employees Could Eventually Experience Higher Taxes from Tax Cuts

Author: Anthony Kaylin

With the new tax law (The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 or TCJA), the tax brackets were reduced so many would recognize greater cash in their wallet at the end of the day.  However, what was not highly publicized was that the TCJA mandated a change from the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) to the Chained Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (chained CPI). The impact of this tax law change is not beneficial to taxpayers but will be to tax revenues in the...

20

Nov

2018

Better Family Policies Key to Fixing Labor Participation Rate

Author: Kevin Marrs

Is your organization struggling in this new era of full-employment?  According to a study from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco the U.S. is now at full employment.  And while most would look at full employment as a good thing, it does bring with it some challenges.  Notably, a lack of qualified talent and meeting the demand to increase salaries in order to attract and retain talent, to name a few.

29

Oct

2018

Trump Administration Making Benefits Easier for Small Businesses

Author: Anthony Kaylin

Last week was a big push by the Trump administration to reduce benefit burdens on small businesses by re-energizing Health Reimbursement Accounts (HRAs) and 401Ks.  These efforts will make an impact towards coverage of small employer employees with both healthcare and 401K access and allow these employers to be more competitive in the war for talent.

29

Oct

2018

Paying Employees to Sleep

Author: Kevin Marrs

Looking to take your companies wellness program to the next level?  One Japanese company may have landed on an idea to do just that.  Bloomberg reported that the wedding organizer firm Crazy Inc. is paying its employees to get a good night’s sleep.  Employees who sleep at least six hours a night for at least five nights will be awarded redeemable points for food in the company’s cafeteria.  According to the report, the sleep is tracked by an app made by a...
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