Blog Posts: Taking Care of HR Business

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Human resource professionals, supervisors, and company executives alike face a constantly changing and evolving legal landscape. Verrill's Taking Care of HR Business blog is here to keep you up to date on the newest and most important legal developments for employers.

Myth Buster: Employers, Vaccine Information, and HIPAA

With the nation’s ongoing focus on COVID-19 vaccinations, you may be hearing information—and misinformation—about your obligations under HIPAA, the federal Health Information Portability and Accountability Act. In this segment of Myth Busters , we address some common misconceptions about HIPAA and its applicability to employers and employee health information...
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HR Power Hour with Robert Brooks- What's Covered? COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate

On this episode of HR Power Hour, join Verrill attorney Tawny Alvarez as she talks to fellow Verrill labor and employment attorney Robert Brooks , about vaccine mandates at work. This episode discusses how the government has authority to mandate vaccines at work, how to implement a vaccine mandate...
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HR Power Hour with Humza Khan – First Five Steps for DE&I

On this episode of HR Power Hour, join Verrill attorney Tawny Alvarez as she talks to Humza Khan, founder of Inclusion Maine, about all things diversity, equity and inclusion. This episode discusses the foundation of building a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion program and the first five steps any organization...
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What Does The Proposed Federal Minimum Wage Mean For My Business?

On July 22, 2021 the U.S. Department of Labor proposed a rule titled “Increasing the Minimum Wage for Federal Contractors” [1] formalizing the Biden Administration’s Executive Order 14026. The rule calls for federal contractors to pay their workers $15/hour and tipped workers $10.50/hour beginning on January 30, 2022. Both...
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Employers Check Your Handbooks: New NLRB General Counsel Sets Course

On August 12, 2021 National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) General Counsel Abruzzo published her first memo setting forth the NLRB’s priorities. The memo identifies recent cases where the Board overruled past legal precedent in addition to noting several areas as requiring careful examination. One of the doctrinal shifts the...
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Federal Vaccine Mandates – What We Know and What We Don’t

On September 9, President Biden announced plans to require that federal workers, federal contractors, and employees of employers with 100 or more employees are vaccinated or tested weekly for COVID-19. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force have been tasked with drafting regulations...
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This Week's Show: Beth Smith – What’s Covered? Workers’ Compensation 101

On Saturday, August 7, Tawny Alvarez, Verrill attorney and co-host of HR Power Hour, interviewed fellow Verrill attorney Elizabeth Smith for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, Tawny and Beth discuss pre-existing injuries, emotional wellness, stress, a skiing accident—are they covered by workers’ compensation? Beth has...
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Connecticut Employers Take Note – Cease Seeking Past Pay Information

Big changes are coming to Connecticut employers and with it, many organizational hiring practices with the passage of HB Number 6380. HB Number 6380 limits the disclosure of wage information from past positions. Currently, Connecticut employers are prohibited from asking (or directing a third party to ask) about an...
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This Week's Show: New Tools to Coach, Counsel, and Cheer

On Saturday, July 17, David Ciullo, co-host of HR Power Hour, interviewed Christopher Lee, the Chief Human Resources Officer for William & Mary, for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, David and Chris discuss how Leaders need new tools to coach, counsel, and cheer their teams...
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This Week's Show: COVID-19 and Return to Work

On Saturday, July 10, Tawny interviewed Emily Waddell, Associate Attorney in Verrill's Employment & Labor Group, for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, Tawny and Emily discuss returning to work and COVID-19. Emily provides tailored legal solutions to support her client’s human capital and organizational objectives...
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This Week's Show: Innovation and Leadership Skills Needed in 2021 and Beyond

On Saturday, July 3, David Ciullo, co-host of HR Power Hour, interviewed Ryan Estis, national speaker, consultant, coach, and advisor , for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, David and Ryan discuss innovation and leadership skills needed in 2021 and moving forward. Ryan understands the challenges...
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This Week's Show: Wellness for Modern Teams

On Saturday, June 26, Tawny interviewed Mike Vien, CEO and Co-founder of Wallit, for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, Tawny and Mike discuss wellness for modern teams. Mike Vien is the CEO and co-founder of Wallit, an enterprise wellness platform for modern teams. For more...
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OSHA Issues Emergency Temporary Standard for Healthcare Settings

Earlier today (June 10, 2021), OSHA issued COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) Subpart U applicable to healthcare settings. While OSHA has indicated that future guidance may be provided for other industries, today’s guidance is limited to the healthcare setting. The first question: Does the ETS apply to your organization...
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Massachusetts COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave Forms

As many readers know, on May 28, 2021, An Act Providing for Massachusetts COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave was passed. The Act creates a fund for the Commonwealth to reimburse eligible employers who provide employees with COVID-19 emergency paid sick leave. This statute provides that between May 28, 2021...
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This Week's Show: Navigating the Medical Minefield Today

On Saturday, June 5, David Ciullo, co-host of HR Power Hour, interviewed Dr. Shantanu Nundy , Chief Medical Officer of Accolade, for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, David and Dr. Nundy discuss how to navigate the medical minefield of today. Shantanu is a physician, entrepreneur...
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This Week's Show: Change Leadership

On Saturday, June 5, Tawny interviewed Mary Axelsen, WeMaax Consulting Founder & CEO, for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, Tawny and Mary discuss CARE Change Framework and the work that WeMaax Consulting does in the Change Leadership arena. Mary comes with 20 years of experience...
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Public Accommodation Laws and Vaccination Inquiries

Last week, the EEOC provided updated COVID-19 guidance to employers on vaccines and vaccine incentives in the employment realm. One area, however, in which the agencies has been silent is in the public accommodation space and what organizations can/must/should do to protect themselves and their employees from claims of...
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ICE Extends I-9 Compliance Flexibility

Those responsible for employee onboarding can breathe a sigh of relief after U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement last week announced that they would extend flexibilities that were instituted last year as a result of COVID-19. Specifically, the announcement extends the agency’s previous rules until August 31, 2021. The rule...
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This Week's Show: Identifying Impairment in the Workforce

On Saturday, May 29, Tawny interviewed Scot Mattox, CEO of Dirigo Safety, for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, Tawny and Scot discuss identifying impairment in the workforce. Scot Mattox retired in September 2013 as a Sergeant with the Portland Police Department after 26 years in...
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This Week's Show: What is Covering?

On Saturday, May 15, Tawny interviewed Elizabeth Johnston, Associate in Verrill's Employment & Labor Group, for this segment of HR Power Hour. For this episode, Liz and Tawny discuss what it means to cover in the workplace, as well as HR best practices for diversity and inclusion. A regular...
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“Policies to Guide Employee Conduct and Respond to Misconduct,” a chapter in MCLE’s Drafting Employment Documents in Massachusetts

Scott Connolly , partner in Verrill’s Employment & Labor Group, has authored the chapter “Policies to Guide Employee Conduct and Respond to Misconduct” in MCLE’s book, Drafting Employment Documents in Massachusetts (4th Edition 2021). The book is published by MCLE and is an essential resource for Massachusetts employers, employment...
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COVID-19 Vaccination Policies: Top 4 Legal Concerns

There are many unresolved legal questions to consider when it comes to COVID vaccination employee policies. Employment and labor attorney Tawny Alvarez and MP’s HR consulting team have compiled key advice for reducing legal risk when it comes to COVID vaccination. To learn about four major areas of legal...
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The COVID Vaccine: HR Policy Development Playbook

In March 2021, we worked with MP HR & Payroll Solutions who created an eBook as a resource for employers, "The COVID Vaccine: HR Policy Development Playbook," that assists employers on what to do about the COVID-19 vaccine and employees begin to return to work. The guide covers vaccination...
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NLRB General Counsel Says “Rat’s It”: Scabby the Rat Here to Stay

Who is Scabby? Scabby is an inflatable rat, sometimes installed by unions at protests and on picket lines. Scabby has been around since the late 1980s and is a well-known symbol to passersby of an ongoing labor dispute. At the beginning of February, the General Counsel of the National...
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Firm Highlights

News

New COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate Impacts Many Maine Employers and Workers

News

65 Verrill Attorneys Recognized by Best Lawyers® 2022, Including Eight Named Lawyers of the Year

(August 31, 2021) – 65 Verrill attorneys were recognized as "Best Lawyers" by Best Lawyers® 2022 , including 8 attorneys named “Lawyer of the Year,” a distinguished recognition for only a single lawyer in...

Blog

Myth Buster: Employers, Vaccine Information, and HIPAA

Publication/Podcast

Workers' Compensation and Employers' Liability Committee

In the spring of 2021, employment and labor attorney Beth Smith published an article in the American Bar Association's The Brief publication. Entitled "Workers' Compensation and Employers' Liability Committee," Beth discusses how this committee...

Publication/Podcast

Portland Maine Business Podcast with Tawny Alvarez

On this week's Portland Maine Business Podcast , a podcast with Shelby Turcotte of Shelby Trained, he interviews employment and labor attorney Tawny Alvarez who shares stories that contributed to shaping her as a...

Blog

Myth Buster: Employees Do Not Have to Be Affiliated With An Organized Religion to Be Entitled To A Religious Accommodation

Blog

Breaking: OSHA Releases Emergency Temporary Standard for Employers with 100 or More Employees

IMPORTANT UPDATE- 11-11-21 The federal court of appeals for the Fifth Circuit has suspended OSHA’s Temporary Emergency Standard in response to a lawsuit filed last Friday by a number of Plaintiffs, which included the...

News

32 Verrill Attorneys Named 2021 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

(November 22, 2021) – The 2021 edition of New England Super Lawyers and Rising Stars© has recognized a total of 32 Verrill attorneys for excellence in their individual areas of practice. Only the top...

Event

Complying with OSHA's Vaccine Mandate Webinar

Join Verrill attorney Tawny Alvarez Friday, November 19th at 7 am or Thursday, December 2nd at 4 pm for a webinar explaining the new OSHA Vaccine mandate, the requirements of business, and what the...

Publication/Podcast

Breaking: OSHA Releases Emergency Temporary Standard for Employers with 100 or More Employees

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