MANAGEMENT TRAINING, LABOR AUDITS, AND WORKPLACE INVESTIGATIONS FOR EVERY BUSINESS, IN EVERY INDUSTRY
Our counseling practice has taught us the value of management training. We believe that the best way to avoid litigation is to ensure that employers are aware of the legal issues which may cause problems in the workplace. This is the foundation of our "preventive" philosophy. To increase this awareness, our attorneys regularly provide management training on legal and employee relations issues.
Our employment law attorneys offer practical training for all employers, including all levels of management. We provide tools to teach managers not only how to identify legal issues within their organizations, but how to successfully navigate around them and use the law as a tool for making necessary personnel decisions. To further facilitate these goals, our training sessions are specifically tailored to each client’s objectives and incorporate many unique California-specific rules and regulations.
We conduct training programs for private and public-sector employers of all sizes. Our attorneys develop and conduct training programs for both supervisory and non-supervisory employees. The training programs and workshops are designed to meet a client's specific needs in a wide variety of workplace issues, such as:
- Equal Employment Opportunity Compliance
- Family Medical Leave Act Compliance
- Harassment and Discrimination Prevention
- Trade Secrets and Proprietary Issues
- Investigating Employee Misconduct
- Compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act
- Social Media and Privacy Issues in the Workplace
- Effective Discipline and Discharge
- Labor Relations and Union Organizing
- Wage and Hour Compliance
- Workplace Violence Prevention
- Independent Contractors Classifications
Many companies mistakenly believe that audits are the result of an employee complaint. While that may sometimes be true, the reality is that the California Department of Labor and the United States Department of Labor routinely perform random audits of companies (including small businesses) to ensure compliance with wage and hour laws, unemployment insurance laws, and to ensure proper classification status. Companies that do not retain an audit attorney place themselves at an extreme disadvantage before the audit has even begun. In order to avoid penalties from the California Department of Labor Standards Enforcement, the United States Department of Labor or other state or federal agencies, companies should be prepared with accurate information and documentation.
During a government audit, our Firm analyzes appropriate records and information to ensure that your company’s rights and privileges are fully protected and provides only what is required by law to successfully complete the audit and reduce any potential audit liability. Once the audit is complete, PKWH will work with your company to ensure that you will be prepared for any future compliance audits.
A comprehensive internal audit should cover all of the following:
- Recruitment and Hiring Policies and Practices;
- Assignments, Promotions, Transfers, and Evaluation Policies and Practices;
- Existence and Components of Training Programs;
- Wage and Hour Compliance;
- Leaves of Absence Policies and Practices;
- Trade Secret and Confidential Information Protections
- Record Keeping and Responsibility;
- Communication of Policies and Practices;
- Employment Handbook and Written Policy Review; and
- Individual Employment Contracts.
In many cases, employers hire employment law attorneys to perform investigations into workplace wrongdoing. Internal investigations can have serious consequences for employers, so selecting the right investigator is critical. PKWH has been brought in as outside investigators in the most sensitive of circumstances—those calling for highly skilled, independent professionals whose judgment and integrity you trust implicitly.
Investigations are typically performed to find what actually occurred in an incident and/or to verify the facts relating to allegations. Oftentimes, this is not an easy task because the investigators must evaluate documentation, ascertain the credibility of witnesses, and connect related facts to either corroborate or refute evidence. In addition, complaints may be made against high-level personnel within the company, which may make it difficult for internal investigators to appear or actually be neutral. In these circumstances, it is always better to use a third party, such as an attorney. A third-party can evaluate allegations in an objective manner and an experienced employment law attorney can handle complex employment law issues. If ever called to testify, an employment law attorney will generally have more credibility than an employee of the company who may be loyal to the employer. In addition, investigations can be very time-consuming. An outside investigator can provide a detailed report of not only what occurred, but also a legal opinion of any violations of state or federal laws, and recommendations for the steps that should be taken as a result of any violations.
Clients call upon the attorneys at PKWH when they need to truly understand what is happening or what has happened in their workplace and whether polices or employment laws have been violated. We appreciate the risks that go along with employee complaints or potential compliance violations. We know how to get to the bottom of these situations and evaluate evidence so that you can make effective decisions.
Typical workplace investigations include:
- Allegations of Harassment, Discrimination or Retaliation
- Whistle Blower Claims
- Wage and Hour Violations
- Workplace Violence
- Employee Misconduct and Poor Performance