Misclassifying workers as independent contractors now carries an even steeper price.
California now has the nation's most punitive laws against worker misclassification. While misclassification has always been illegal, businesses found to have incorrectly classified employees as independent contractors now face civil penalties ranging from $5,000 to $15,000 per employee, and $10,000 to $25,000 per employee in instances involving “a pattern and practice” of misclassification.
Today’s workplace has its own brand of bully. Instead of fists and feet, the adult bully uses an array of psychological tactics to exert control. But interestingly, adult bullies rarely view themselves as powerful.
They may even be overwhelmed – overreacting to minor setbacks, or interpreting everyday occurrences as personal slights.
Whether you work in human resources, or simply read the newspaper, it’s easy to recognize the frequency with which employers get sued. In 2004, the EEOC recovered $251.7 million on behalf of complainants for the over 85,000 charges it resolved. In addition, the EEOC collected $168.3 million for the cases that the EEOC was involved in litigating. Court records indicate that twenty-five percent, or one-quarter, of all the litigation matters in federal court are employment-related disputes, and even more cases alleging discriminatory acts in employment are brought in the state courts.
This sample program follows the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) "Safety and Health Program Management Guidelines", published on January 26, 1989 in the Federal Register. These guidelines were drawn from the experience obtained enforcing the OSHA Act, from the Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP), OSHA programs to recognize excellence in worksite safety and health, from OSHA’s Consultation Program, and from public commentary. This sample program is especially written for the small, independent business owner, but the outline can be applied to any size business.
Could it possibly be equally as unlawful to lie about your age as it is to download trade secrets from your employer's computer? Some say that both may constitute a violation of the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1030 (“CFAA”), and therefore the statute must be amended.
In recent years, the number of prosecutions under the CFAA has increased.