Rebecca Watkins

Do you manage employee leave for employees in Oregon or Washington?

Check out the new Oregon and Washington Absence and Disability Management group on LinkedIn. This new group is aimed at giving employers and HR professionals a forum to share ideas and learn about changes specific to the unique laws and requirements in Oregon and Washington. Join the group and share with others who may be interested!  

October Event: Employer Disability & Leave Roundtable

KAISER PERMANENTE AND SATHER, BYERLY & HOLLOWAY EMPLOYEE DISABILITY AND LEAVE ROUNDTABLE Date: Tuesday, October 16, 2018 Time: 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Where: Kaiser Permanente- Town Hall Ballroom (3704 N. Interstate Ave., Portland, OR 97227) Cost: Free – Lunch provided Kaiser Permanente and Sather Byerly & Holloway are sponsoring a work group for Oregon and Washington employers related to leave management. This open-forum roundtable will allow employers to bring their questions and share their insights on how to address various disability and leave requirements under state, federal or local laws. Mike Moses, ADA Manager at Kaiser Permanente, and Rebecca Watkins, attorney at Sather Byerly & Holloway LLP, will lead the group in problem-solving discussions… Continue reading

Predictive scheduling: What is it and does it apply to my company?

In a nutshell, Oregon’s new law requires certain employers to provide advance schedules for their employees and imposes penalties for last minute changes. SB 828 went into effect on July 1st and BOLI recently issued final rules for the new law, found here. Does it apply to my company? The law applies to retail, hospitality and food service establishments that employ 500 or more employees worldwide. This includes chains and – a more tricky concept – integrated enterprises. If your company operations overlap with another corporate entity (think parent, subsidiary, franchisor, general contractor) then take a look at the factors that determine if the companies would be considered an “integrated enterprise.” Those factors include: Interrelation of operations of the… Continue reading

Oregon Minimum Wage Increases on July 1, 2018

The next annual rate increase for minimum wage goes into effect on July 1, 2018. The standard rate increases to $10.75 per hour. Those in the Portland Metro area increase to $12.00 per hour and for non-urban counties, the rate increases to $10.50 per hour. If you are not sure which category you fall into, check out BOLI’s website here for a link to the Portland Metro urban growth boundary and a county-by-county map of rates. If you have any questions regarding which rate you are obligated to pay, please contact me directly at (503) 595-2134.

Minimum Wage Increases July 1, 2017

Oregon’s second rate increase under 2016 legislation goes into effect on July 1, 2017. The minimum wage for your company turns on your location. The standard rate will increase to $10.25/hour and applies to most of the state. But nonurban counties have a lower rate increase to $10.00/hour. The nonurban counties include: Baker, Coos, Crook, Curry, Douglas, Gilliam, Grant, Harney, Jefferson, Klamath, Lake, Malheur, Morrow, Sherman, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa and Wheeler counties. And employers located in the Portland Metro area will have a higher rate increase to $11.25/hour. Unsure if your location falls inside the Portland Metro area for purposes of minimum wage? Visit this website and confirm: http://www.oregonmetro.gov/library/urban-growth-boundary/lookup If you have questions about wage and hour law, please give… Continue reading

Join SBH at the DMEC Chapter Meeting on June 7

Need a refresher on the ADA? Want tips about accommodating mental health issues? Join us at the DMEC Chapter Meeting on June 7th, when experts from the Job Accommodation Network (JAN) and Kaiser Permanente share their insights on the following ADA topics: accommodating depression & anxiety medical inquiries under the ADA ADA interactive process This half-day program has been approved for 3 CLMS/CPDM credits. It will take place at the Kaiser Permanente Town Hall on 3704 N Interstate Ave. The cost is $50 for members or $60 for nonmembers and includes breakfast. Parking is free. Register at the link below. http://dmec.org/2017/03/10/2017-oregonsouthwest-washington-chapter-meeting-jun-7/

Disability/Leave Roundtable for Employers

The Oregon/SW Washington chapter of the DMEC is hosting a free lunch roundtable on March 15, 2017. Employers, HR professionals, and leave administrators are encouraged to attend to discuss leave management challenges. The event is free, but registration is required. March 15, 2017 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Kaiser Town Hall – 3704 N Interstate Avenue. Register here: http://dmec.org/2016/12/20/2017-oregonsouthwest-washington-chapter-meeting-mar-15/

Federal Court Denies Injunction of OSHA Recordkeeping Rule

rebecca_watkinsOSHA issued a final rule regarding electronic recordkeeping that also included new anti-retaliation records. Read a prior blog post regarding this rule here: https://sbhlegal.com/new-osha-rules-address-post-accident-drug-testing-retaliation-claims-and-electronic-injuryillness-reporting/ A group of insurer and industry groups in Texas filed suit challenging OSHA’s authority to enact the anti-retaliation provisions of the new rule. They asked the court to enjoin OSHA from implementing the new rule until it could consider the merits of the challenge. Today, that federal court denied the motion for that preliminary injunction. The court found the plaintiffs failed to show that irreparable harm would result if the court did not stop implementation of the rule pending a final decision. As a result, the anti-retaliation provisions will go into effect on Thursday, December 1,… Continue reading

Federal Court Stops DOL Exempt Salary Changes

rebecca_watkinsOn December 1st, the Department of Labor’s new rule regarding exemptions from overtime was set to go into effect. A ruling from a federal court yesterday suspends that rule. The DOL rule in question updated exemption rules that allow employees meeting both a salary test and duties test to be exempt from receiving overtime. The rule can be found at https://www.dol.gov/WHD/overtime/final2016/. It raises the salary test from $23,660 to $47,467 for most employees, and the salary test for “highly compensated employees” to $134,004. The rule ties the standard salary level to the 40th percentile of full time salaries of employees in the lowest census region, and ties the highly compensated employees salary level to the 90th percentile of full time… Continue reading

October 5th seminar on workforce management

rebecca_watkinsJoin me and an excellent group of presenters for a full day of cutting edge topics related to disability management. Topics include emergency preparedness, ADA/FMLA challenges, productivity management, and more. This seminar is hosted by the Oregon/Southwest Washington Disability Management Employer Coalition, which has been recognized nationally for excellence by the DMEC. The meeting has been approved for 6 CPDM and 6 CDMS credits. For more information and to register, go to http://dmec.org/2016/08/01/2016-oregonsouthwest-washington-chapter-meeting-oct-5/