New Hampshire News & Analysis

  • New tax credit rewards companies that offer paid FMLA leave

    Employers that offer paid family and medical leave may get an unexpected tax benefit next year at tax time. The tax reform law that passed earlier this year contains a little-noticed tax credit for employers that provide qualifying types of paid leave to their fulland part-time employees. The credit is available to any employer, regardless of size, if:

  • WHD issues more opinion letters

    In a follow-up to its recent reissuance of 17 opinion letters that had been issued (by the Bush administration) and withdrawn (by the Obama administration) in early 2009, the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) has already issued two more opinion letters. As you may recall, the agency had stopped providing such letters during the Obama administration, but the Trump DOL has revived the practice.

  • Investigation limitations: Consider hiring outside help in #MeToo era

    In the era of #MeToo, HR managers are finding that their jobs involve more and more internal investigations. Very few of us entered the field of personnel management because we love questioning alleged victims and suspects. Nevertheless, that is an essential part of addressing internal complaints. So what is an HR manager to do? Well, a new poll indicates that the best option may well be to hire outside investigators.

  • Agency Action

    DOL issues opinion letters on FLSA. The U.S. Department of Labors (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) in April announced three new opinion letters related to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and other laws. The letters released on April 12 concern (1) what counts as work time under the FLSA when employees travel for work, (2) whether 15-minute rest breaks required every hour by an employees serious health condition must be paid or may be uncompensated, and (3) whether certain lump-sum payments from employers to employees are considered earnings for garnishment purposes under Title III of the Consumer Credit Protection Act. An opinion letter is an official document authored by the WHD on how a particular law applies in specific circumstances presented by the person or entity requesting the letter. Opinion letters represent official statements of agency policy. (For more on these opinion letters, see WHD issues more opinion letters on pg. 10.)

  • Workplace Trends

    Women more likely to see pay disparity, survey finds. Nearly a third of women (32%) participating in CareerBuilders Equal Pay Day survey in April said they dont think they are making the same pay as men in their organization who have similar experience and qualifications. That compares to 12% of men who think that way. The survey also found that men are more likely to expect higher job levels during their career, with 29% of men saying they think they will reach a director level or higher, compared to 22% of women. The survey also found that 25% of women never expect to reach above an entry-level role, compared to 9% of men. Almost a third of the women in the survey (31%) said they think theyve hit a glass ceiling within their organizations, and 35% dont expect to reach a salary over $50,000 during their career, compared to 17% of men who expect that salary.

  • Union Activity

    Teamsters president slams threat to publicsector unions. Teamsters General President James P. Hoffa spoke out against the U.S. Supreme Court case Janus v. AFSCME during an April conference, saying the case is about politics and people who hate unions. The case could remove the requirement that nonunion members pay certain union fees to cover costs of collective bargaining. In March, Hoffa also met with Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) to discuss the threat the Janus case poses to public-sector unions.

  • New DOL program offers self-reporting of wage and hour violations

    The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced in March 2018 that it is launching a program to allow employers a chance to self-audit their wage and hour practices—and report any violations they find—in exchange for limited protection from additional liabilities and claims. The program, dubbed the Payroll Audit Independent Determination (or PAID) program, will start as a six-month pilot, after which the DOL will decide whether to offer it on a permanent basis.

  • Congress pins down tip-pooling requirements

    When Congress passed another spending bill in March 2018, few people were expecting it to resolve a somewhat obscure and highly technical dispute over how employers allocate tips among their workers. Nevertheless, that's exactly what the law does, and the result is much-needed clarity on the topic. Let's take a closer look at tip pools, their history, and what the new law accomplishes.

  • Agency Action

    DOJ sues California over immigration. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced in March 2018 that the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) had filed a lawsuit against California based on the state's enactment of laws seen as creating "sanctuary" jurisdictions. The DOJ says three different state laws "intentionally obstruct and discriminate against the enforcement of federal immigration law." The department contends that the laws are preempted by federal law and "impermissibly target the Federal Government, and therefore violate the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution."

  • Workplace Trends

    Survey finds global engagement levels at all-time high. Global employee engagement levels hit an all-time high in 2017, according to research from Aon, a global professional services firm. The 2017 figures follow a dip in engagement levels the previous year. Aon's analysis of more than five million employees at more than 1,000 organizations around the world found that global employee engagement levels reached 65% in 2017, up from 63% in 2016. The percentage of employees who were highly engaged increased from 24% in 2016 to 27% in 2017. Aon research shows that a five-point increase in employee engagement is linked to a three-point increase in revenue growth in the subsequent year.