Lessons on Social Media in the Workplace

485226707The following is a guest blog post by Tyler M. Paetkau, a partner with Hartnett, Smith & Paetkau in Redwood City. Tyler represents employers in all aspects of labor and employment law. He’s a frequent author and speaker on labor and employment law issues, and the former Chair of the Executive Committee of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar of California.

The workplace has certainly been affected by the explosion of social media. Courts and administrative agencies are grappling with complex issues involving employee personal privacy, harassment, defamation, trade secret misappropriation, and union-organizing efforts in the age of social media. Although the rules are far from clear, there is some guidance for employers out there. Continue reading

Should You Go on the Offense Against a Wrongful Termination Plaintiff?

493444849When sued by a former employee for wrongful termination, many employers feel that the best defense is a strong offense and want to attack back with a cross-complaint. But is this a good game plan? Continue reading

Conducting a Fair Workplace Investigation

475850687Every employment attorney at some point will be asked either to conduct or assist with a workplace investigation. Attorneys taking on this role will need to act as a neutral fact finder and refrain from zealous advocacy, a change a pace for many. Continue reading

Action Plan for Handling Harassment Claims

79166511Just in case employers have forgotten how critical it is to avoid and properly handle harassment claims, the recent $1.5 million settlement against JPMorgan should serve as a reminder. Advise all employers to take action and have a plan to protect employees and minimize harassment claims. Continue reading

Protecting Company Secrets: Checklist for Making a Plan

186300420If you represent businesses, you know how important it is to protect their trade secrets. A crucial part of that effort is developing and implementing a trade secret protection plan. Specific company needs may vary, and plans have to be crafted with those needs in mind, but some elements should be included in any trade secret protection plan. Continue reading

When Paramour Preference Is Problematic

187471299With love in the air on this Valentine’s Day, here’s a friendly reminder to keep it under check in the workplace. Preferring a lover over others at work may be a natural inclination, but it can lead to a sexual harassment claim. Continue reading

Drafting a Healthy Sick Leave Policy

115653553(1)Attorneys representing start-ups are presented with a wide-range of tasks to do. If you find yourself drafting a sick leave policy, keep these guidelines handy so you don’t miss any essential steps.

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Disability Accommodation: The Big Picture

162815624For employers, the disability accommodation process can be complicated and time-consuming. It’s important that company representatives have a clear view of the common “big picture” issues that come up during the process. Continue reading

Pros and Cons of Paycards

163741759Much of our economy today uses electronic technology, so it seemed inevitable that employers would look into electronic pay. Continue reading

Need to Improve Employee Performance? Have a Plan.

blog76806702bProviding frank feedback to employees can be difficult for even the most experienced human resources personnel. The process is more difficult if an employee is having performance problems that require correction. Don’t ignore the problems; set up a plan.

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