South Carolina News & Analysis

  • Tips for managing suspicious FMLA intermittent leave

    Q Two of our employees are married and work at the same facility. They both have medical certifications for intermittent Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave from the same doctor. Our records show they always request intermittent leave at the same time. What can we do to curb this obvious abuse of FMLA leave?

  • Workplace Trends

    Survey finds lack of understanding of when workers will retire. U.S. employers are rethinking their approach to managing the retirement patterns of their workforces, according to a study from Willis Towers Watson. The 2018 Longer Working Careers Survey found that 83% of employers have a significant number of employees at or nearing retirement, but just 53% expressed having a good understanding of when their employees will retire. Additionally, while 81% say managing the timing of their employees' retirements is an important business issue, just 25% do that effectively. The survey found that 80% of respondents view older employees as crucial to their success.

  • Wrap up 2018 with new or revised handbook

    This year has brought an unusual number of changes in employment law. Various federal agencies got into the groove of aggressively undoing a lot of requirements their predecessors in the Obama administration had put into place. In addition, there has been an increasing number of employment-related requirements from state and local governments.

  • Internal investigations: Get it right or pay the price

    It will come as no surprise to most of our readers that in the 12 to 14 months since the advent of the #MeToo movement, we have seen a marked uptick in requests for advice about and assistance in conducting sexual harassment investigations. Below are some thoughts to keep in mind when you approach this issue on your own—and when to bring in the professionals.

  • Workplace Trends

    Research shows slow growth for middle-wage jobs. A study from CareerBuilder shows that highand low-wage job growth is overshadowing the increase in middle-wage jobs. According to the study, the United States is expected to add 8,310,003 jobs from 2018 to 2023, with just one-fourth of them in the middle-wage category. Factored into the total job growth is an expected loss of 369,879 jobs over the same period, with middle-wage occupations experiencing the majority of the decline. The research shows that a total of 121 occupations will experience a decline in jobs between 2018 and 2023, and 75 of them are middle-wage jobs. Highand low-wage occupations are expected to have the highest net job growth from 2018 to 2023 at 5.71% and 5.69%, respectively. Middle-wage employment will grow at 3.83%. STEM-related occupations will continue to dominate fast-growing occupations, according to the research.

  • The state of at-will employment in South Carolina

    My articles usually analyze a particular case and the impact of the court's decision on the relationship between employers and employees. With the release of a number of decisions addressing employment at will earlier this year and some guidance issued by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), we thought a summary of the state of at-will employment in South Carolina would be timely. Read on to see what's occurring here in this area of the law.

  • How to claim paid family and medical leave tax credit

    The tax reform law passed late last year contained a little-noticed tax credit for employers that provide employees paid "family and medical" leave and meet certain other requirements. While the IRS hasn't finalized regulations pinning down the specifics of the new credit, it recently issued some helpful guidance. Let's take a look.

  • Can you keep a secret? How to handle 'confidential' employee complaints

    The #MeToo movement just turned one. And while its long-term effects on the workplace remain to be seen, it's commonly expected that increasing numbers of women (and some men) will be informing their employers about problems with sexual harassment.

  • Be careful when terminating employees on leave

    Q One of our employees has been on short-term disability leave for the past few months. During that time, we have decided to lay off several employees in her job classification because of a lack of work. Is it OK to proceed, or do we need to find a way to return the employee on leave to work?

  • Tell me lies, tell me sweet little lies

    Everyone fudges the truth on occasion. But lies in the workplace should not be tolerated. A failure to address affirmative falsifications and lies of omission can lead to a culture where secrets, misrepresentations, and self-preservation are regularly placed above the company's best interests.