Employee Issues

Post image for New Employee Notifications for New York

My colleague, Deborah Shapiro, Esq., reminded me of a recent change to New York State employment law. In short, beginning October 26, 2009, New York employers must inform newly hired employees in writing, at the time of hiring, of their pay rate, regular payday and, if eligible for overtime, regular hourly rate and overtime rate.  […]

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Post image for How to Say Goodbye to an Employee

If last week’s post about awkward work situations wasn’t enough, firing an employee probably has to top the discomfort charts. It may be justified (the employee was cooking the books) or necessary (sales are down 40 percent because of the economy, so you need to downsize) . . . but it’s rarely a task that […]

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Post image for Hiring without the Headaches

Even small businesses need a hiring process. Making the leap from business owner to employer takes a combination of faith, a strong stomach and smart planning. After all, once you decide to become an employer, you agree to take on a bushel of issues above and beyond just paying a regular salary. There are taxes […]

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Post image for Awkward! Managing Potentially Sticky Work Situations

“Been there, lived it,” you say.  Crazy co-workers, back-stabbing co-workers, co-workers who babble on all day and won’t SHUT UP enough to let you focus and do your job, co-workers who seem to wear every sensitivity on their sleeve (as well as those who trample over you like a bull in a china shop). You’ve […]

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Post image for Moonlighting: Legal for Business Owners?

Q: If a person is a 50 percent owner in an LLC corporation, is it illegal for that person who owns another company that does the same type of work to go and do work or operate under that business?  Someone mentioned to me that it is a conflict under a law regarding corporate obligation. […]

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Post image for Basic Training: ‘Finagling’ Overtime . . . and Why That’s an FLSA Red Flag

Like cheating on taxes, playing fast and loose with Fair Labor Standards Act employee classifications can land you in a world of hot water. Do you know the distinction/difference between “exempt” and “non-exempt” employees as it relates to their duties and the paying of overtime? Q: I want to lessen my payroll by finding ways to lower […]

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Nancy and I were sitting on a chic white leather couch at Pranna, one of NYC’s newer Indo-Asian-fusion restaurants. Having a glass of wine. Exotic music thumping in the background. The after-party of a speed-networking event. Nancy has owned her consulting business for about five years, having left the stifling corridors of corporate America. She […]

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You want to hire an independent contractor. Or a freelancer. Mostly because you don’t want to get involved in the red tape and extra costs involved in hiring an employee. So you put together an independent contractor agreement, and the freelancer signs it. Are you in the clear? No. In this segment of MSNBC’s Your […]

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Post image for Basic Training: Can Employees Legally Take Your Clients?

Your employees can become your next competitors if you don’t handle the relationship carefully . . . and by “carefully,” I mean having non-solicitation agreements and other understandings (in writing!) with your employees. But some folks are “old-school,” or don’t want to spend the money.  As a result, their employees are considered working “at-will” and […]

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Post image for Avoiding a Shoot-Out with Your Freelancer ‘Gun for Hire’

I was asked recently in my Forbes.com Ask An Expert column whether you could copyright something you didn’t write.  The short answer is “no,” unless you’ve carved out a “work for hire” exception.  This is particularly relevant for entrepreneurs who outsource to freelancers for their projects. When you hire a freelancer to do work for […]

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