St. Croix Valley Employers Association Held Annual Labor Law Clinic

Top Secret Labor Law Clinic a Huge Success

On September 16th, 2015 St Croix Valley Employers Association held their annual Labor Law Clinic. The seminar, titled “Mission Possible: Become a More Informed Leader”, covered several timely legal issues. Included in the seminar were the following missions and takeaways from the speakers:

Mission 1: Understanding OSHA and How They Can Work for You, presented by Mary Bauer-OSHA Compliance Assistance Specialist . Mary reviewed the new changes in OSHA reporting. Within eight hours after the death of any employee as a result of a work-related incident, you must report the fatality. Within twenty-four hours after the in-patient hospitalization of one or more employees or an employee’s amputation or an employee’s loss of an eye, as a result of a work-related incident, you must report the in-patient hospitalization, amputation or loss of an eye to OSHA. Reporting must be done by phone, by electronic submission using the reporting application, or in person to the OSHA Area Office nearest to the incident.

Mission 2: Avoiding Wage and Hour Violations, Exempt vs. Non-Exempt, presented by Caitlin Gadel, Associate Attorney-Seaton, Peters & Revnew. Since 2000 FLSA claims filed by plaintiff attorneys have increased by more than 77% and proper classification of exempt employees is one of the biggest FLSA compliance issues. In order to avoid these problems, employers should stay up-to-date on all new rules and regulations, start preparing for the DOL’s new salary levels to go into effect, determine which employees may no longer be considered exempt and determine if the business will increase employees’ pay or start tracking employees’ hours in order to pay overtime.

Mission 3: Monitoring Employees…Smart or Too Much of a Risk? Presented by Jennifer Nodes, Associate Attorney-Jackson Lewis P.C. There can be several reasons for monitoring employees in the workplace. Employers may want to ensure productivity, protect trade secrets and confidential information, prevent fraud or theft, dissuade improper behavior or avoid data breaches. Whatever the reason, there are several issues that employers must be aware of before monitoring employees and almost all states have a common law tort for ‘invasion of privacy’. It’s important to assess your risks, adopt policies, develop and implement a written security program, create a culture of privacy and security and regularly reevaluate risks and policies as business and technologies develop.

Mission 4: New 2016 Requirements: All you need to know about ACA Reporting, presented by Stacy H. Barrow, Partner-Marathas Barrow & Weatherhead, LLP.  Getting ready for the ACA reporting requirements is on all of our minds. Stacy discussed what affordable coverage is, code section 6055 provider reporting and code section 6056 employer reporting. We were reminded that employers who show a good faith effort in complying with the information reporting requirements under section 6056 will not be liable for any accuracy related penalties. A great resource for updated ACA information is available in the fifth edition book, “The New Health Care Reform Law: What Employers Need to Know” by Paul M. Hamburger and Peter J. Marathas and is now available to purchase online.

Mission 5: Updates in Employment Law – Case Law Trends, Hot Issues, presented by Mike McCain, Lead Attorney-Eckberg Lammers. The top five case laws for 2014-2015 included issues related to the following:

  • Religious Accommodation
  • Wage and Hour
  • Social Media
  • Sexual Harassment
  • ADA Accommodation

This seminar is one of our most popular and the information that attendees receive from the various speakers is a great way to stay on top of important information in the human resources field.

For more information about the St. Croix Valley Employers Association, visit

Blog post submitted by Trish Norman SHRM-SCP, President of SCVEA.


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