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Employment Law

The Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA represents employers and employees in connection with most workplace issues and claims. Such matters may include:

Discrimination

Everyone knows that the law prohibits discrimination based on sex, age, religion, or ethnicity, but there are many other areas that can be troublesome for an employer.  With state and Federal law constantly evolving, having an employment attorney aid you in making the correct decisions and avoiding litigation.

Employee Handbooks

There are constant and ongoing changes occurring within employment law. These changes can result from many sources including the legislature, various regulatory agencies, and court cases. To avoid litigation, your company’s policies and procedures should reflect the latest state of the law. A comprehensive employee manual is a great way to start, but if you fail to regularly update that manual to reflect the current laws and standards, it isn’t worth much. A company audit is an ideal way to ensure that you are in full compliance.  The Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA can help you protect your business by keeping you apprised of current employment law.

Employment Agreements

An employment agreement must be carefully drafted in order to ensure that the duties and responsibilities of the employee and the employer accurately reflect what is intended.  In addition, employment agreements can unintentionally violate tax provisions which could result in significant penalties if not drafted carefully.  Having a lawyer draft or review an employment agreement is an essential process in protecting the company’s interests.

Employment Policies and Procedures

In addition to your employee handbook, it is important to have written policies in place that address issues such as sexual harassment restrictions, as well as email and Internet use. The Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA provides legal advice in these areas.

FLSA

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) regulates minimum wage, overtime, equal pay, recordkeeping, and child labor for employees of enterprises engaged in interstate or foreign commerce and employees of state and local governments.  Are you properly compensating your employees under FLSA or are you setting yourself up for a large lawsuit?

FMLA

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) requires employers to grant eligible employees up to twelve weeks of unpaid leave for the care of a child or a family member with a serious health condition, or when the employee is unable to work because of his or her own serious health condition. When in doubt, it is always best to consult with an employment law attorney to avoid FMLA violations.

Harassment

State law may hold employers liable for harassment or retaliation, be it sexual harassment or for other reasons, even if it was not a supervisor who engaged in prohibited activity. If a supervisor or a managerial employee learns that a worker is being harassed by another employee, it is imperative that immediate remedial steps are taken to avoid liability. It is a good idea to consult with an employment law attorney to avoid problems.

Negligent Hiring Prevention

An employer may be held liable for an intentional or illegal act committed by his employee. The employer’s knowledge of past acts of impropriety, violence, or disorder by an employee may be sufficient to forewarn the employer that the employee may engage in future wrongful conduct. The Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA can help counsel you in hiring responsibly and what to do if you find yourself the target of a negligent hiring suit.

Non-Competition Agreements

Many companies find it necessary to have agreements with employees that protect against competition and the use of company trade secrets by departing employees. The laws regarding enforceability of these agreements are complicated and subject to state interpretation.  The Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA can offer you legal counsel in this matter.

Severance Agreements

There are two primary goals of employers in offering severance packages to employees: first, extending fairness and compensation to longer-term employees and second, reducing the employer’s exposure to potential liability in a lawsuit or administrative claim. Severance packages are complicated and best offered under the direction of an employment law and employee benefits attorney.

Termination

It is inevitable that there are times when an employer will have to perform the unpleasant task of firing one or more employees. With a little preparation, termination can be handled in a manner that minimizes an employer’s potential liability. Our legal team can provide assistance with termination situations.

Employee Benefits/ERISA/Executive Compensation

Executive compensation and employee benefits are diverse and rapidly changing areas of the law and their significance to affairs of business continues to increase. At the Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, P.A., we represent a variety of clients including business entities, financial institutions, individual executives, small businesses and entrepreneurs, and individual and corporate trustees of employee benefit plans on a full range of executive compensation and employee benefits issues.

Health Care Reform

Do you know what it takes to be compliant with Health Care Reform?  Do you know what changes have to happen this year?  The Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA can walk you through Health Care Reform and tell you how much this will affect your business and what you can do to control costs.

Qualified Retirement Plans

We design, amend and restate pension, profit sharing, 401(k) and other qualified retirement plans. These qualify for certain tax benefits under the Code, including deferral of taxation on contributions made on behalf of participants, immediate deductibility for the employer with regard to such contributions and deferral of earnings on such contributions. In the event of problems stemming from the operation of your qualified retirement plan, the Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA has extensive experience in correcting these issues through the IRS and DOL voluntary compliance programs, as well as dealing with the IRS and DOL in negotiations throughout the audit process.

Welfare Benefit Plans

Our clients are increasingly concerned with providing adequate health, life, accident and disability coverage to their employees at the least possible cost. This area has been the focus of much legislative debate in recent years. The firm also has experience in the areas of welfare benefits, including the increasingly important area of retiree medical liability.

Retirement and Welfare Benefit Plans of Not-for-Profit and Governmental Entities

The Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA has extensive experience working with the benefit programs of non-profit organizations and governmental entities. In this regard, we have designed, drafted and maintained 403(b) and 457(b) plans for our clients. In addition, we can help design and draft other types of nonqualified deferred compensation plans under 457(f) for our clients.

Executive Compensation Arrangements

We often negotiate executive officer agreements on behalf of our corporate clients and individual executives. Our practice includes drafting and negotiating a wide variety of agreements, including employment, consulting and severance agreements. We work closely with our clients’ compensation consultants to implement plans that accord with market norms and provide the maximum retentive effect for our clients’ officers.

Non-Qualified Deferred Compensation Agreements

We work with our clients in establishing non-qualified deferred compensation arrangements to enable them to provide more retirement security to their officers. We also advise our clients on related deferred compensation arrangements such as supplemental executive retirement plans (SERP) and excess benefit plans. In addition, we have extensive experience with respect to issues raised by Section 409A of the Internal Revenue Code and non-qualified deferred compensation arrangements maintained by investment managers with offshore funds.

Incentive Programs

Executive incentive programs range from annual bonus plans to both cash-based and equity-based long-term incentive plans, including qualified and nonqualified stock options, stock appreciation rights, phantom stock, restricted stock and partnership profits interests. For our clients who are publicly traded, we use our practical experience and knowledge to design incentive plans to comply with Code Section 162(m), as well as to ensure that appropriate securities law disclosure of executive compensation arrangements is made in a timely fashion. We specialize in designing customized incentive programs covering either senior officers or a client’s larger employee population.

Golden Parachutes and Similar Arrangements

Golden parachute arrangements condition payment or property transfers to certain key individuals on a change of ownership or control of the employer or a transfer of a significant portion of its assets. This is one example of certain arrangements that can be used to motivate employees to work toward the common goal of completing a transaction. At the Law Offices of Scott D. Segal, PA, we have substantial experience in designing these arrangements with a view toward their treatment under Code Sections 280G and 4999, as well as Code Section 409A knowledge to avoid any additional excise taxes under that section of the Code.

Fiduciary Responsibility and Plan Investments

Our practice can assist on Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) issues that arise for our clients, including issues relating to protection under ERISA Section 404(c) and ensuring that your plan fiduciaries are not exposing themselves to individual liability.