OSHA Proposing New Slips, Trips and Falls Rules

Saying that many of the methods used by American industry to prevent slips, trips and falls are outmoded, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) today (May 25, 2010) is publishing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register to realign its relevant regulations. OSHA is looking to the construction and maritime industries […]

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OSHA Opens Nevada Office, Will Augment State OSH

Following a blistering critique of the Nevada OSH program in 2009, the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is opening a Nevada branch rather than shutting down Nevada’s own operation. However, one might now reasonably expect much closer review and supervision of the Nevada OSH effort; in addition, federal officials said its Nevada office […]

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DOL Expands List of Jobs Off Limits to Youths

On May 20, 2010, the Department of Labor (DOL) published a Final Rule in the Federal Register expanding the list of hazardous occupations (HOs) prohibited to youths 14 to 17 years of age. The rule builds on and amends the nonagricultural occupational standards for youths covered in the landmark Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of […]

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GINA Claims Start Pouring into EEOC

Under terms of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), employment decisions cannot be  based on a person’s genetic information or family history of genetic markers in disease and disability. The law went into effect Nov. 21, 2009, and already the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has received 80-plus complaint filings–and this despite the fact that […]

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OSHA to Beef Up Whistleblower Program, Adding 25 Agents

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), headed by David Michaels, is flexing its muscles all around, increasing fines, adding field inspectors, and now strengthening its whistleblower program by adding 25 agents to the 87 it already has. In making the announcement, Michaels lamented the high dismissal rate of whistleblower claims (63 percent) and noted […]

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Early Retiree Reinsurance Program to Start June 1

Beating the deadline of June 21, 2010, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released regulations to commence the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program on June 1 as mandated by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). The program will reimburse employers who provide health insurance for retirees between the ages of 55 […]

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HHS Releases Standards for Adult Dependent Insurance Coverage

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released rules for the health reform measure that allows parents to keep dependents on their health insurance through age 25, which takes effect Sept. 23. The rules mandate that pricing for dependents of any age be the same, though it sets no limits on the pricing. […]

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Health Worker Becomes First HIPAA Inmate

There are some cautionary tales and lessons in the strange case of Huping Zhou, 47, who once worked for the UCLA Health System–until he was fired for poor performance–and who now finds himself facing hard time for HIPAA privacy violations. Here’s where it gets strange for both UCLA and the Chinese surgeon. First, UCLA gave […]

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Reclassifying Employees as Non-Exempt a Proven Red Flag

If you find yourself reclassifying your employees as non-exempt (from previously being exempt), then you could end up in deep legal doo-doo like the Michigan Bell Telephone Company. Reason? It doesn’t take employees long to figure out that, if they’re doing the same jobs as exempt as when they were non-exempt, then they were probably […]

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DOL Mulls New Approach to Compliance

The Department of Labor (DOL), in issuing an updated regulatory agenda this past week, announced it was considering a major change in its approach to enforcement. Instead of letting businesses play what it called a "catch me if you can" game, the DOL said it will issue regulations requiring each company to develop and implement […]

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