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Q: One of my employees is injured at the moment. Can I temporarily lay him off and hire a new employee to perform his job until he returns?
A: Yes, you may hire additional employees, but you must return the injured employee to work once he is released to full duty.
Q: If I terminate an employee for misconduct, will she still be able to collect unemployment benefits?
A: In most states, an employee will not receive unemployment benefits if he or she is terminated for misconduct. But the action for which the employee is fired must be serious enough to constitute misconduct and justify the denial of benefits. Examples of disqualifying misconduct include: revealing trade secrets, sexually harassing coworkers, chronic tardiness, dishonesty, and extreme insubordination.
Q: When do I have to give an employee his or her final paycheck?
A: Under federal law, employers are not required to give former employees their final paycheck immediately upon termination – the employee may be paid on the regular pay day for the last pay period that he or she worked. However, some state laws may require immediate payment or dictate other terms regarding final pay.
Q: A member of my management staff is constantly being disrespectful to a fellow associate. Can I terminate him for his behavior?
A: Disrespectful behavior can serve as a ground for termination, as employers are obligated to provide a safe and non-hostile working environment for all employees.
Q: Are all employees protected from age discrimination?
A: No. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) does not cover employees under age 40, nor does the ADEA apply to employers who have less than 20 employees. However, some state laws provide additional protections.
This information should not be considered legal advice. NFIB and the NFIB Small Business Legal Center are not responsible for any errors or omissions. NFIB members with additional questions should call the NFIB Employer Hotline, which provides free information on employment issues. For more information on the hotline, call (800) NFIB-NOW.
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