DO YOU RECOGNIZE SAME-SEX MARRIAGES?
The Supreme Court ruled that all states must recognize same-sex marriages. You’ll want to review your entire array of benefits to ensure you are in compliance with the associated obligations brought about by this change. For specific questions or further guidance, please contact OGA’s preferred labor relations & employment law attorney, Matt Austin of Roetzel & Andress, LPA at MAustin@ralaw.com or 614-723-2010.
DOES YOUR EMPLOYMENT APPLICATION ASK ABOUT CRIMINAL HISTORY?
If your company’s application still includes a question asking about criminal history, make sure you don’t operate in a state that has implemented a “ban the box” law prohibiting that practice. Ohio is among the states 19 states and over 100 cities and counties that now have some form of the law. For specific questions or further guidance, please contact OGA’s preferred labor relations attorney, Matt Austin of Roetzel & Andress, LPA at 614-723-2010.
Ohio’s ban on texting while driving went into effect August 31, 2012. OGA Associate Member, Roetzel & Andress, LPA, has prepared the following summary of the new texting law as well as a reminder for employers to review or develop policies around employee cell phone usage. It is important to note that employers can still be held liable for injuries to people or damage to property caused by employees who use a cell phone when driving while on company time or in company vehicles.
CELL PHONE POLICY
In response to some member inquiries regarding cell phone policies, we contacted a full-service Human Resource and Management Consulting firm, which gave the following suggestions:
- Employees are to exercise the same discretion with personal cell phone use as for company phones – excessive personal calls can interfere with employee productivity. Employees are encouraged to make personal calls on non-work time. Failure to follow this policy could result in possible discipline as well as restrictions on use, including no use at all.
- Company-provided cell phones – employee needs to: 1) protect from loss, damage or theft; 2) produce phone for return or inspection, as requested; 3) may need to reimburse company for charges for personal use.
- Employees are to refrain from using cell phones while driving. Regardless of circumstances, employees are strongly encouraged to pull off to the side of the road safely before placing or accepting calls or text messages.
If employee job responsibilities include regular driving and accepting business calls, company will provide hands-free equipment to facilitate usage of cell phone. All employees who are issued a company cell phone are expected to abide by these same provisions. Under no circumstances are employees allowed to place themselves at risk to fulfill business needs.
- Employees who are charged with traffic violations resulting from the use of their phone while driving will be solely responsible for all liabilities that result from such actions. Violations of this policy will be subject to the highest forms of discipline, including termination.
If your company does not yet have a cell phone policy in their employee handbook, please consider the above suggestions. And, for further information or clarification, please contact our associate member, Roetzel & Andress.
OGA Associate Member Matt Austin is a Partner and management Labor Lawyer at Roetzel & Andress, LPA. Matt can be reached at 614-723-2010 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org