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Archive for August, 2009

Breaking the BankAn appeals court in California just decided that a CEO, CFO, and a manager at a hotel could be held personally responsible for payment of back wages and accrued vacation time of employees who filed a suit in federal court under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  The amount has not been decided yet, but the plaintiffs went after the individuals because the hotel/casino was in bankruptcy, and therefore could not be made to pay the claims.

Whether you own your ambulance service or are just an employee like the rest, if you have the responsibility to make decisions about how people get paid or record their time, this case tells us that the government can go after YOU if employees are not paid correctly.  Your employer can buy insurance that covers you even after bankruptcy, or after you don’t work there any more. This is a good reminder to do a periodic audit of your coverage, both personally and corporately.  Talk to your lawyer, insurance agent, CPA.  And of course, the best way to avoid a court order to pay back wages is to pay them correctly in the first place.

In New Jersey, depending on the way they write and communicate their policies, private employers may not have to pay out accrued leave when an employee quits or is terminated.  However, your actual practices have to reflect your written policies.  Having a policy and not following it consistently can be worse than not having a policy at all.

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 The New Jersey State Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division is looking for volunteers to help first-responders in Cape May.

The division is working with the Wills for Heroes Foundation, a nonprofit group that helps emergency aid workers obtain free estate planning documents.   The Saturday event will be held at the Cape May County Public Safety Training Center in Cape May Courthouse.  It starts at 8:30 a.m. Attorneys do not need special qualifications.

Volunteers can serve as attorneys, witnesses or notaries. To volunteer or find out more, contact Karen Weiss at kweiss@sternslaw.com.

Following the event, Cooper Levenson April Niedelman & Wagenheim will host a reception at the nearby Bellevue Tavern.

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