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Questions Answered by Rhiannon Herbert
1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Can an employer in NH make a MA resident use vacation time instead of sick time when sick with Covid?

My husband lives in MA but works in NH. Can his employer make him use his vacation time if he's sick with Covid?

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Jan 18, 2022

Yes. There are no laws that require employers to pay their employees for time off work for any reason (and additional COVID-19 laws that would apply to this situation expired in 2020), so if the employer offers any form of paid time off, it can require that it be used according to its own... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law on
Q: Is firing someone for asking questions about a specific role and salary illegal?

I was hired at an insurance firm for administration, however the broker I worked for recently promoted me to a much more difficult and work heavy position without my knowledge or consent. I had more responsibility but the same pay. When I asked him about my position more and possible salary... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Jan 18, 2022

While your situation sounds unfair, it is likely not unlawful. At-will employment states permit the employee or employer to terminate the employment relationship at any time and for any reason. As long the language in your employment contract does not alter this arrangement (which, based on your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Arkansas on
Q: I was getting my paid check and noticed I was paid for 1 hr I worked 5 hrs I know I did even my mom knew is it legal?
Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Jan 12, 2022

You must be paid for all hours you worked, so you should bring this up to your employer and explain the discrepancy. Moving forward, you should independently track the hours you work so you have your own record of your start and end times.

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law, Workers' Compensation and Employment Discrimination for Georgia on
Q: Can my employer legally pay vaccinated workers to quarantine and not pay unvaccinated?

They are requiring unvaccinated employees to use vacation / PTO & paying vaccinated employees without having to use their PTO / Vacation time. Keep in mind that the quarantine rules are the same regardless of vaccination status, 5 days for exposure and 10 days for a positive Covid test.

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Jan 12, 2022

Wage and hour laws only require your employer to pay you for time that you are working. Since employers are not required to offer pay for non-work hours, the above policy, while unfair, is permissible.

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Nevada on
Q: Is commute pay not eligible for overtime?

I work for a temp agency that sends me to several locations around the city. There is one location that is an hour and a half outside of town. We carpool to this location and are paid 2 additional hours for travel. This travel pay is never overtime. We could go to this location everyday for a week... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Jan 5, 2022

The general rule for travel time pay is that you must be paid for travel during your work day (ex. from work location 1 to work location 2) but not for travel to your first site for the day or travel home after your last site of the day. If travel to the out-of-town location you mentioned is the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Mississippi on
Q: I was asked to take a urinalysis and have been suspended for 2 weeks while waiting for the results. Is this legal?

I filed an hr complaint for harassment against an employee at work. Since making that complaint I was asked to take a urinalysis drug test after returning from lunch break. I was suspended immediately until the results come back. However it’s been two weeks with no follow up. Is it legal to be on... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Jan 5, 2022

This depends on why you were selected for the drug test. If the selection was random, or if your employer has a work-related reason to test you, then it can require you to remain out of work until the results are received. However, if you believe you were selected based on your complaint of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Colorado on
Q: If I was verball told that my contract was not being renewed but never given a written letter of non-renewal. Legal act?

I was a probationary teacher but never received a written non- renewal letter. Is there any legal action possible in this situation?

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Dec 29, 2021

This depends on the language in your old contract (the one that isn't being renewed). If your old contract states that you must be informed in writing and/or given prior notice of non-renewal, then you should discuss your situation with a Colorado employment attorney.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Texas on
Q: My Mother has worked at a nursing home for 20+years recently they have her working no days off for 4 months what do we

She has worked there for so long.Since working nonstop she has had no days off,sick days, a raise nothing to be compensated for. She is 60 years old. What can we do?

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Dec 29, 2021

There are no laws that place limits on how much an employee can be scheduled to work. Other than submitting a written request for a reduction in her hours, there isn't much that can be done here. However, if your mother is paid by the hour, she must receive overtime pay for all hours she works... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Appeals / Appellate Law for Alabama on
Q: Should I appeal my case if my employer is saying I quit when in fact I did not,?

I had to take a temporary leave of absence to take care of my disabled son while his mother an I also grieved oven the loss of our new born son.

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Dec 21, 2021

More information is needed to answer your question. You should contact an Alabama employment attorney to discuss your situation in further detail.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Tennessee on
Q: Central freight is closing with no 60 day notice to employees. Does this violate the warn act?
Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Dec 14, 2021

More information is needed to answer this question. While the WARN Act generally does require 60 days' notice prior to a mass layoff or plant closing, there are a lot of exceptions and qualifications to this general rule. You should contact a Tennessee employment attorney to discuss the... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law for Oklahoma on
Q: Non-Compete Agreement

I have a non-compete agreement with my current employer in Norman, OK. The agreement states that "To the maximum extent permitted by law, this Agreement will be interpreted under, and governed by, the laws of the State of Wisconsin." Can they enforce this agreement on me in Oklahoma or... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Dec 14, 2021

More information is needed here. The provision you quoted simply means that disputes under the agreement will be governed by Wisconsin law. The agreement can still be enforced regardless of where you live or work.

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Minnesota on
Q: If I ask for a $15 raise and my employer would like me to sign a contract to commit for 2 years. What happens if I leave

Minnesota.

I am nearing the end of my internship. The employer would like to offer me a permanent position at my current pay of $20/hr. I asked for $35/hr and my employer would like me to sign a contract committing to stay for 2 years. I would like to know if I agree and sign. And then... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Dec 7, 2021

More information is needed here, as the answer to your question will depend on the language in the contract your employer wants you to sign. You should consult a Minnesota contract attorney for a review of the specific terms in the proposed contract.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Illinois on
Q: Does a company have to pay a bonus you have earned if you leave the company?

My husband has earned a large bonus this year. He has received 3 small payments, and the bulk is to be distributed in February 2022. The contract says that the employee must be employed by the company at the end of the year to receive the last payment. My husband has already secured a new job that... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Dec 7, 2021

If the bonus contract requires your husband to be employed through 2021 to earn the bonus, then it can be denied if he doesn't work through the end of the year. If his new employer is flexible on his start date, you may want to see if his start date can be pushed back to still allow him to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Oregon on
Q: I was fired for missing work due to having cancer and getting surgery. Do I have any options?

In July of this year I was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The medical team was able to get me scheduled for surgery in Aug. August 9 I had surgery. On September 2nd my medical was canceled then on the 7th or 8th my boss called me and said this isn't working for him. At that time I felt I... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Nov 30, 2021

More information is needed to answer your question. You should reach out to an Oregon employment attorney to discuss the communications you had with your employer leading up to and during your medical leave, as well as how you took the time off (ex. whether you used FMLA leave, paid time off,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Arizona on
Q: In Az, is employer required to pay sick pay if emp works 60-70 hrs/wk and is sick 1 day?

I work in transportation and work 60-70hrs/wk. I had to leave 2 hrs into 12 hr shift due to emergency. Employer says he doesnt have to pay since I work more than 40hrs/week. And since this specific issue is not outlined verbatim he doesn't have to pay sick pay when we work beyond 40hrs.

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Nov 30, 2021

Employers are only required to pay their employees for their time spent performing work. The law does not require the payment of sick time, vacation time, or any other kind of paid time off. However, if you are paid by the hour, you must be paid at a rate of one-and-one-half times your regular... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Texas on
Q: Can an employer deny a request for unpaid PTO?

I am a healthcare professional under contract which entitles me to 80 hrs of vacation PTOs. But there are certain instances that they wont allow for more than 80 consecutive hrs PTO (even unpaid) because of problems with coverage. Can an employer deny this request even if the excess hours are... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Nov 24, 2021

Yes. There are no laws that govern what employers can do regarding scheduling, as long as you are paid for all hours that you work.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Can my employer refuse to pay me for missing work due to being positive for covid?

Owner of company knowingly put me in danger of contracting covid by making me drive in a work van while he was visibly, extremely sick. Within days of that exposure I was diagnosed as covid positive. Refuses to pay me.

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Nov 24, 2021

While numerous laws were enacted in response to COVID-19 in 2020, these extra protections all expired on December 31, 2020. Now, whether and how much pay you are entitled to is governed strictly by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The FLSA does not require employers to offer sick pay or pay you... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Employment Discrimination for Arizona on
Q: Is it legal to record someone on your phone
Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Nov 16, 2021

Arizona is a "one party" recording state. This means that you must be part of the conversation (or obtain at least one party to the conversation's consent) to record the conversation. As long as one party (whether it's you or someone else) consents to the recording, the other... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Iowa on
Q: Can an employer force you to drive a company vehicle when you weren't hired to drive anywhere to begin with

I have been there 11 years and now they are saying I need to run errands in a company car. I have a good driving record however I am always frightened to drive in the winter so I am curious if they can force me to do so when it wasn't part of my job before.

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Nov 16, 2021

Yes, there are no laws that prohibit your employer from changing your job duties at any time, either with or without notice. However, if driving in the winter makes you uncomfortable, it may be worth letting your employer know this and requesting to not drive on inclement weather days.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law for Virginia on
Q: Can a company forced me to drive an 11 passenger van if I feel uncomfortable and unsafe doing so. I’m 4’11

I tried to drive it alone and it had a lot of blind spots and the seat doesn’t go up high so it was hard to see. I explained to my manager and director it’s unsafe for me to transport my residents if I’m not comfortable driving it but I got wrote up and turned into HR and was told my job is... Read more »

Rhiannon Herbert
Rhiannon Herbert answered on Nov 10, 2021

Your employer is permitted to terminate your employment for any reason or for no reason at all, as long as the reason is not discriminatory (i.e. based on race, sex, religion, age, or disability). If you are uncomfortable driving the van due to your height, you may want to discuss whether the van... Read more »

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