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January 2016 Archives

How can an employment audit help my business?

Just as you need to take care of yourself with periodic checkups, you need to take care of your business with periodic audits. It should come as no surprise that most businesses receive a visit at some point by a government agency. Depending on the overall health of your business, these periodic visits may result in fines and penalties if it has been awhile since your last employment audit.

By conducting a comprehensive audit of your businesses practices and policies, you may be able to prevent unnecessary penalties and violations. Many times, business owners are aware of a scheduled government inspection. Even if you feel your business practices and policies are up-to-date and accurate, you may still benefit by periodic reviews. By holding these audits before a government inspection, you may be able to avoid a blemish on your otherwise stellar record.

Employment audits can be designed to cover all aspects of personal policies and practices. A comprehensive review can investigate everything from policy and payroll to compliance and regulation adherence. Many times an independent auditor will also interview members of management to identify any issues that may come up during a government inspection.

The main benefit of performing your own internal audit is that issues and potential violations can be identified, discuss and corrected long before a government agency imposes a fine or penalty. Periodic audits are a great way for business owners to maintain the overall health of their company. An experienced employment law attorney may be able to help business owners conduct a thorough audit and, if necessary, can make recommendations for effective and immediate resolution of any issues found.

Paying unemployment benefits to workers on strike

Generally speaking, workers that are involved in a strike or a work stoppage are not allowed to collect unemployment benefits from their employer. However, there are exceptions to this rule that would allow some employees to collect unemployment benefits. It is important for employers to know and understand their responsibility as it pertains to unemployment benefits of workers on strike.

If employees participate in a strike, they typically are not eligible for unemployment benefits. However, if the employees belong to a union and any number of them did not actively participate in the strike but lost their jobs as a result, they may be eligible to collect unemployment benefits.

For employees that did not participate in a strike and experienced a period of unemployment after the strike is over, they also may be able to collect unemployment benefits during this time. For employees that participated in a strike, most states disqualify them from receiving unemployment benefits for a certain period of time no matter how quickly the strike was resolved.

Employers may be on the hook to pay employees on a work stoppage if the layoff is due to a shutdown at another location also owned by the same employer. Likewise, initiating a lockout will result in having to pay unemployment benefits. Employers should take great care not to violate collective bargaining agreements or wage and hour laws, as any work stoppage caused by doing so may result in employees filing unemployment benefits claims.

Unemployment benefits claims and violations against unemployment insurance can cost employers a great deal of time and money. In order to stay protected, employers should speak to an employment law attorney about current laws and requirements regarding unemployment benefits.

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Kisner Law Firm, LLC
Gulf Tower
707 Grant St., Suite 2646
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
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Phone: 412-208-4263
Fax: 412-235-6704

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