Articles by Richard D. Alaniz

Ricci v. DeStefano: Sotomayor's Headache or Yours?

In her confirmation hearings, perhaps no part of Sonia Sotomayor’s judicial work received more attention than her opinion in Ricci v. DeStefano. This case illustrates the problems employers face in trying to make employment decisions without running afoul of Title VII - the law prohibiting employment discrimination.
Read More

Getting to Know GINA - The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act

It may sound like the plot from a science fiction movie - through genetic testing, someone finds out she may develop a serious disease, her company finds out and fires her, and she can’t get health insurance because of this future health risk. Congress, though, took steps to ensure this scenario does not become reality.
Read More

Laying Off Employees? Don't Get Bit by Recent Changes to COBRA

The changes to COBRA provide an employee with a subsidy from the government that covers 65 percent of the cost of COBRA health insurance coverage. The subsidy is a nice idea. But as always, the government decided to create a bunch of new administrative red tape for employers to deal with.
Read More

Lilly Ledbetter: Wait, That Happened How Long Ago?

Trivia question: What was the first law that President Obama signed into law after being elected? Answer: President Obama’s first act upon taking office was to sign the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009. Although it hasn’t received much fanfare, the ramifications of the Act are only now starting to be understood.
Read More

New Law Eliminates Employers' Best Defense to ADA Claims

Why do you need to worry about recent changes to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)? If you answered, “Because I’m going to start losing lawsuits,” you would be right. In a nutshell, the amendments expand the definition of disability and broaden the number of employees who will be covered by it.
Read More

The New FMLA: It's Not Just for Pregnancies Anymore

When someone mentions the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), many people immediately think of pregnancies. And FMLA is a resource for employees impacted by pregnancies, but it’s much more than that. New regulations governing the FMLA have become effective, so it’s a good time to review FMLA issues.
Read More

Can You Keep a Secret? More Importantly, Can Your Employees?

A recent survey found that a substantial number of employees admitted to stealing confidential employer information. Your proprietary company information is vital and there are a number of steps you can take to greatly reduce your risk of theft.
Read More

Background Checks: Is an Honest Employee Too Much to Ask For?

In the old days, a background check consisted of a couple phone calls to a former employer and a reference check. Modern background checks involve a comprehensive investigation. But the law draws some clear limitations on what can be considered valid criteria and what crosses the line into unfair discrimination.
Read More

Discrimination by Association - What Employers Need to Know

“Association discrimination” claims arise when an employee claims he or she has been discriminated or retaliated against because of an association or relationship with a disabled person. Employers need to tread carefully in this area.
Read More

Companies Need to Prepare Now for ADA Changes

When President Bush signed the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) Amendments Act of 2008 into law, it signaled major changes in the legislation that prohibits workplace discrimination against people with disabilities. When the law becomes effective on Jan. 1, employers need to be prepared for those changes.
Read More



Image Galleries

2014 SMACNA Annual Convention

Views from the 2014 SMACNA Annual Convention in San Antonio.


NEWSMakers: Chris Mathis

Chris Mathis, president of Mathis Consulting Co. and vice chair of ASHRAE’s residential ad hoc committee, talks about ASHRAE’s exploration into the residential market. Posted on Oct. 17.

More Podcasts


NEWS 10-27-14 cover

2014 October 27

Check out the weekly edition of The NEWS today!

Table Of Contents Subscribe


DOE has denied AHRI’s petition for reconsideration of walk-in standards. Is it getting harder to reach consensus on efficiency standards?
View Results Poll Archive


2015 National Plumbing & HVAC Estimator

Every plumbing and HVAC estimator can use the cost estimates in this practical manual!

More Products

Clear Seas Research


Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications, Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.


Magazine image
Register today for complete access to Get full access to the latest features, Extra Edition, and more.


facebook icontwitter iconyoutube iconLinkedIn i con