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The Modern Workplace

Posts from November 2011.
Foreign nationals are often among the most highly-qualified applicants for permanent positions at colleges and universities in the United States.  In order to hire and retain foreign national candidates for permanent positions, colleges and universities need to follow a series of steps to assist the qualified foreign national candidate in obtaining work permission and, if desired, permanent residence status in the U.S. Permanent residence status confers on foreign nationals the right to live and work in the U.S. without time limitations.  One of the more common ways to obtain ...
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This week we see the push and pull between the benefits that new technology can provide and the difficulties it creates when we try to integrate it into our current systems. A number of problems have arisen recently based on the availability of cell phone GPS data and the security of data organizational and protection software. These, and other technological issues affecting our lives, have been collected below.
Technology and the Law
Conflict Between Circuit Courts on Legality of Cellphone Tracking (SecurityNewsDaily)
Legality of Malls Tracking Shoppers Using their ...
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Technology definitely changes faster than the law. It can take anywhere from several months to several years for the law to recognize and sort out causes of action created by new technology. In the news this week, we see that courts and legislatures are getting more up-to-date on technology, and that problems sometimes result. Below are some links showing how the law has and hasn't kept up, as well as what has been changing in the world, the workplace and the law.
Technology and the Workplace
Who Owns Your Company's Twitter Account? (DelawareEmploymentLaw)
Most Hospitals ...
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The recent, shocking news floating around Penn State University has understandably caused some employers to reflect on their obligation to report and take meaningful action in response to suspected criminal sexual activity.  Most states have statutes that establish when reporting of the abuse of a minor is required, but employers who do not serve or supervise minors may have little knowledge of mandatory reporting laws. Common law, which also varies from state to state, may create a duty of care for employers that requires reasonable attention to the safety and security of employees ...
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The work of those in highly visible positions (political figures, executives, business owners and litigants) is subjected to a great deal of public scrutiny. Women who are in these roles are no exception, and views about their performance, strengths, weaknesses and personality are widely discussed in the media. The articles below discuss some of the current technological and legal issues that have come up this week, both those involving women and the world at large.  
Technology and the Workplace

The Newest Tech Start-Ups and the Women Who Founded Them ...
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Recent news coverage of Republican Presidential Candidate Herman Cain reminds us that sexual harassment in the workplace is still a powerful issue.  The events alleged by Mr. Cain's former employees took place before social media emerged as the force it is today, so its doubtful that email, text messages, or other forms of electronic communication were relevant to the investigations done by the National Restaurant Association back in the 90s.  In todays technology-saturated workplace, however, any and all forms of electronic communication may be critical sources of information in ...
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Posted in Immigration
We have received information that the Department of Homeland Securitys Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency recently initiated a new round of I-9 audits.  Although ICE has not yet issued a public announcement about a new wave of audits, there have been multiple reports of businesses receiving Notices of Inspection beginning last Wednesday, November 2, 2011.  Our July 1, 2011 Modern Workplace blog post provides information regarding the I-9 audit process and tips for how to respond to a Notice of Inspection.
In light of ICEs continued focus on I-9 audits, it is now more ...
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Performance reviews can be a managers least favorite part of the job. They can be uncomfortable, confrontational and emotional. So, often, instead of addressing incidents of misconduct or poor performance with the employee, managers avoid the issue, and may even give a neutral or positive review. Then, when the manager concludes that discipline or termination are warranted, there is no documentation to back-up assertions of negative job performance, which can make things difficult if an employee later claims the action was taken for unlawful reason.  But even leaving aside the ...
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As written about previously on this blog, there has been a major shift recently from closed source work technology to open source work technology. Many employers are allowing their employees to use their own personal devices, be it smartphone, tablet or laptop, at work. From the employers side this can increase productivity, but can create confidentiality issues. Also to be taken into account are technology problems. The more power and control technology has over our lives the more vulnerable we are to viruses, mistakes and software problems. What can go wrong? Many things.

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