OSHA Final Rule: Electronic Reporting and the End of Blanket Post-Injury Drug Testing

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently published a final rule to “Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses.”  The full text of the rule can be found here.  The rule requires electronic submission of work related injury data for some employers. In addition, the rule serves to prevent employers from illegally discriminating and/or retaliating against employees for reporting work related injuries and illnesses.  This means employers may no longer be able to use post-injury drug testing for all work related injuries. The new rule will be enforced beginning November 1, 2016.

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Employers: Watch for Notices Coming from Health Care Exchanges

Based on the regulations of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Health Care Insurance Marketplaces (also referred to as Exchanges) will begin to send out notifications to certain employers when one or more of their employees enrolls in coverage through the Marketplace and is eligible for a subsidy, or Advanced Premium Tax Credit, for one or more months. In 2016 the notices will only be sent when employees provide a complete address for the employer. This means that in 2016 employers may not get notices from the Exchange for all employees who are receiving subsidies. A sample notice can be found here.

The following are some common questions many employers have about these notices.  Continue reading

San Francisco: Updated Paid Sick Leave Effective January 1, 2017

San Francisco is ugolden-gate-bridge-388917_1920pdating their paid sick leave law, first enacted in 2007. The new changes will go into effect on January 1, 2017. Prior to January 1, 2017, employers should continue to follow the existing paid sick leave ordinance (click here to read the original ordinance). As a brief overview, the current law requires all employers to provide paid sick leave to all employees, including part time and temporary employees, who work in San Francisco. This leave can be used for an employee’s illness, injury or to receive medical treatment or to assist a family member or other designated person who is ill, injured or receiving medical treatment.

Employees in San Francisco currently begin accruing sick leave after 90 days of employment and can accrue up to 72 hours of paid sick leave. Employers with less than ten employees (including full time, part time and temporary employees), have a reduced maximum accrual of 40 hours of paid sick leave. Continue reading