Many companies and individual workers in Massachusetts are still clinging to certain myths about classifying workers as independent contractors. Here are the top six often held, but misguided beliefs:
I signed a contract that says I am an independent contractor, so I must be one, right? (Actually, employers cannot avoid the obligation to properly classify . . . → Read More: Top Six Myths About Independent Contractors in Massachusetts
Severance agreements are usually drafted with the employer in mind. While the agreement may give some weeks or even months of severance pay to the employee, the exchange may or may not be fair. If the agreement hasn’t been negotiated, there is a good chance that it has been written by the company’s attorney to . . . → Read More: Severance Agreements and Collecting Unemployment Benefits
Signed severance agreements in Massachusetts are contracts that outline the rights and responsibilities of the company and the employee. Typically severance agreements are drafted by the company to protect its interests. Despite the fact that the severance agreement may be one-sided, employees often just sign the agreement without fully understanding it.
It is important that . . . → Read More: Negotiating Massachusetts Severance Agreements
Home care workers who take care of the elderly, house bound and infirm in Massachusetts are protected by state laws on minimum wage, overtime and meal breaks. Home care workers in New York State just resolved a class action lawsuit, claiming that they weren’t paid overtime and worked “off the clock.” You can read about . . . → Read More: Rights of Home Care Workers in Massachusetts
For a discussion of tip sharing practices in Massachusetts, read this post by Boston labor and employment attorney, Maura Greene . . . → Read More: Tip Pooling Practices and the 20 Per Cent Tip
Waitstaff in Masssachusetts may not be required to share their tips with restaurant owners or managers. This is true whether there is a tip jar on the counter, the customer leaves cash on the table or the tip is on a credit card. The owner of the restaurant may not require servers to give up . . . → Read More: Tip Pooling Laws and Servers’ Rights in Massachusetts
The Massachusetts Tip Pooling Act protects the tips of waitstaff from being distributed to employers, managers and employees who are not serving restaurant customers directly. Three types of restaurant employees may share tips: wait staff, service employees and service bartenders.
Employees who do not serve customers directly, such as kitchen staff, administrative staff and expeditors . . . → Read More: Massachusetts Tip Pooling Act And Protections for Waitstaff
Many Massachusetts companies and their managers ask their employees who are not exempt from overtime to work “off the clock,” meaning that the employee isn’t being paid for all of the time spent on the company’s business. Some of these activities include the following: (1) Attending meetings before the employee’s regularly scheduled shift; (2) Driving . . . → Read More: Massachusetts Employees and Working “Off the Clock”
Since Massachusetts amended its laws in 2004, it has been very difficult for companies to legitimately treat workers as independent contractors. Although many companies have now put those “independent contractors” on the payroll, many still have not.
For a worker to be an independent contractor in Massachusetts, that worker would have to meet the following . . . → Read More: Independent Contractors in Massachusetts
Home care workers in Massachusetts are entitled to overtime pay under state law. As such, companions and caregivers for the elderly or infirm are entitled to time and a half after forty hours. The Massachusetts Labor and Workforce Development’s website has a nice short article on home care workers and overtime.
In Massachusetts, home care . . . → Read More: Home Care Workers in Massachusetts Entitled to Overtime Pay