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Getting what you deserve

Good news for local food and service workers, hotel staffers, and others who toil especially hard in Portland during the warmer months: There's a new blog looking out for your best interests: www.wage-hour.net. So far, posts have been written by a John Thompson of the Atlanta branch of the labor law firm Fisher & Phillips, which has a branch here in Portland. In fact, a local F&P attorney -- Eric Uhl -- will talk about wage and hourly compensation issues at this year's Maine Human Resources Convention (to be held in Rockport, May 11-13).

Keeping in mind recent controversies (I'm thinking specifically of those at The Front Room and Super Great Wall Buffet), these quotes, from a Fisher & Phillips press release, seem quite relevant:

"Many Maine businesses are constantly facing employment challenges involving wage and hour issues, including everything from what constitutes compensable work time to who must be paid overtime,"  Uhl noted.  "All employers obviously want to be compliant, but doing so can be very tricky.  Almost every employer has some wage and hour issue that should be addressed." 

Uhl's presentation, "Wage and Hour Traps for the Unwary," will emphasize issues involving the classification of employees who are exempt from overtime and minimum wage, the designation of employees versus independent contractors, and rules for establishing what constitutes compensable work time. Uhl will offer guidance on how to quickly analyze if there are wage and hour violations in the workplace, and participants will leave with "Ten Steps" to gauge whether there are any lurking hour or wage violations in their respective workplaces.

Perhaps both Harding Smith and ROC-Maine will/should be in attendence.

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