Can You Pass the HR Test? (California Version)
1. Rest and Lunch breaks can be combined to allow employees the option of leaving work early, if approved by the employer.
2. If an employee takes a training class or attends an employee meeting, this would be considered work time for pay purposes unless:
a) the mandatory class occurs on an unscheduled work day.
b) the class is paid for by the employee.
c) the class is truly voluntary and failure to attend the class or meeting and both the employee and the employer believe that the failure to attend would have no adverse affect on the employee’s working conditions or continued employment
3. Which of these is a true statement?
a) With the exception of travel from home to an employee’s typical work location and back, most travel time is considered work time.
b) You do not have to reimburse employees for all out-of-pocket business expenses, including mileage, toll and parking.
c) If you require non-exempt employees to attend a conference away from their typical work place, you must pay them for the travel time to and from the conference, including the time of their usual commute.
4. Which of these is a true statement?
a) If an employee termination is involuntary, the employer must present the employee with a final paycheck at the time of termination. This would include pay for hours worked, unused accrued vacation leave, and unpaid commissions if applicable.
b) Employers have 72 hours to provide a final paycheck to an employee who voluntarily quits their job regardless of the employee’s last day of employment.
c) When an employee terminates, an employer can take certain deductions such as vacation advances from the employee’s final paycheck.
5. If an employer learns that an employee who normally works with chemicals is pregnant, the employer should immediately suggest that the employee take a leave of absence to protect the growing fetus.
6. Which of these is a true statement?
a) If an individual requests that he/she be hired as an independent contractor and signs a written contract, the employer is safe from future liability if the individual makes a claim that they should have been an employee.
b) If an individual is incorrectly engaged as an independent contractor, the only liability comes from a failure to pay employer and employee taxes.
c) If you have misclassified an individual as an independent contractor, you can be held liable for many claims and labor code violations including overtime wages, workers’ compensation benefits, civil tort liability and associated penalties.
7. In a job interview, it is a good practice to “talk up” future opportunities. Courts have found that damages are not recoverable when an employer induces an applicant to leave secure employment by knowingly making false promises regarding the terms of his future employment.
8. Which of these is a true statement?
a) The requirements of an I-9 form can easily be satisfied by telling prospective employees to bring a social security card and drivers’ license with them on their first day of work.
b) If there is an agency audit of your I-9 records, the focus of the audit will be to verify that your employees are legally able to work in the US. Missing I-9’s, missing dates and incomplete information will not be an issue or result in potential fines.
c) Expired documents are not acceptable for proving eligibility to work in the US.
9. Which of these is a true statement?
a) If work allows the employee to sit, you must provide suitable seats. If the work does not allow for sitting or it is awkward and inconvenient, there is no obligation to provide seating.
b) Employers who misclassify employees as exempt may owe the employees unpaid overtime, penalties for missed meal and rest breaks, interest and attorneys’ fees.
c) Employees are always entitled to three warnings before termination.
10. Which of these is a true statement?
a) Any perceived negative employment action (e.g., demotion, transfer, termination) occurring close in time to the filing of a harassment complaint creates an inference of retaliation for exercising his/her legally protected rights. Employees are now receiving awards because of retaliation even though the original claim of discrimination is not proven.
b) Legally, discrimination covers actions taken against people because they belong to certain protected classes. In California, marital status is not a protected class.
c) There is no way to address performance problems with employees who are in protected classes.
Correct Answers: 1(b), 2(b), 3(c), 4(c), 5(a), 6(b), 7(b), 8(c), 9(b), 10(a)
How did you do? If you’re like many managers, you are probably familiar with all of the topics. However, it is a challenge to get all of the details straight. With the risks associated with getting “it” wrong, we recommend that managers receive periodic updates on key HR issues and requirements, in addition to participating in mandated Sexual Harassment Prevention Training.